Sunday, 4 May 2008
Ubuntu makes certain things that should be difficult, easy and some things that should be easy, difficult, like assigning keys to commands. I'm a keyboard jockey, I'm way happier using the keyboard than the mouse> I tell my self this is because the keyboard is quicker, but it's probably because I cut my teeth in the days before mouse, and and in Emacs where key chords are king!
This means I am lost without my keyboard shortcuts, in Windows such things as W+L to lock (where W is the Windows key). I use Windows a lot, and if I'm using Ubuntu I'd like the same keys to work. This should be easy, however it appears that having Compiz enabled, Compiz and Gnome clash!. Gnome has dialogs to set up keybindings, but you have to jump through hoops to get it to work.
First hoop is getting Ubuntu to recognise the Windows key (called the Super key in Linux) as a key modifier, like Control and Alt. To do this go to System..Preferences..Keyboard, select the Layouts tab and then Layout Options. From here select Alt/Win key behavior and then choose "Super is mapped to the Win-keys"
Once you've done this you can now edit the Gnome keyboard preferences. From System..Preferences..Keyboard Shortcuts, scroll down to Desktop. Here you can click on the "Show the panel run application dialogue", select this and hit WindowsKey + r on the keyboard. Do the same for Run a terminal, but select WindowsKey + t. You may think you can do the same thing for the Search, Home Folder and Lock screen commands (assign them to Windows + f, Windows + e and Windows +l respectively), however, those commands cannot be assigned from here and if you try, not only will the commands not work but you may have trouble re-assigning the keys elsewhere. Instead to assign these key you will need to you the Compiz Configuration Manager
Select System..Preferences..Advanced Desktop Effects Settings. In the dialog box select General and then Commands. I have my first three commands set to "beagle-search", "nautilus" and "gnome-screensaver-command --lock" respectively and the key bindings set to
There's more here on this.
Now, if only I can get Ctrl+Esc to bring up the main menu!
Posted by Generalat 12:21 PM in