Without unplugging my keyboard I'd like to disable it from the terminal; I was hoping that this could be done using rmmod but based on my currently loaded modules it doesn't look like it is possible.

Does anyone have any ideas?


There are pretty good directions on doing it here, titled: Disable / enable keyboard and mouse in Linux.


You can list the devices with this command.

$ xinput --list
"Virtual core pointer"  id=0    [XPointer]
"Virtual core keyboard" id=1    [XKeyboard]
"Keyboard2"     id=2    [XExtensionKeyboard]
"Mouse2"        id=3    [XExtensionKeyboard]

And disable the keyboard with this:

$ xinput set-int-prop 2 "Device Enabled" 8 0

And enable it with this one:

$ xinput set-int-prop 2 "Device Enabled" 8 1

This only works for disabling the keyboard through X. So if you're on a system that isn't running X this won't work.

List of properties

You can use this command to get a list of all the properties for a given device:

$ xinput --list-props 2
Device 'Virtual core keyboard':
    Device Enabled (124):   1
    Coordinate Transformation Matrix (126): 1.000000, 0.000000, 0.000000, 0.000000, 1.000000, 0.000000, 0.000000, 0.000000, 1.000000
  • 2
    Will it be reactivated if unplugged and plugged back in? Might be tricky to get a response from the machine (unless it's a laptop) otherwise :) – terdon Sep 17 '13 at 16:13
  • Yeah these disable device questions always seem loaded for the "ok so how do I re-enable it" piece. – slm Sep 17 '13 at 16:15
  • I would add that this disables the keyboard only for X11 and not for any TTY. Also you can still switch to the TTYs with Ctrl+Alt+F? – Raphael Ahrens Sep 17 '13 at 16:33
  • @RaphaelAhrens - yeah I said that in the answer, but thanks for re-iterating it. – slm Sep 17 '13 at 16:34
  • 2
    @terdon Make sure you have a working SSH connection before experimenting. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Sep 17 '13 at 22:37

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