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KEYBOARD(5)                        Console-setup User's Manual                        KEYBOARD(5)

       keyboard - keyboard configuration file

       The  keyboard  file describes the properties of the keyboard. It is read by setupcon(1) in
       order to configure the keyboard on the console.  In Debian systems  the  default  keyboard
       layout is described in /etc/default/keyboard and it is shared between X and the console.

       The  specification of the keyboard layout in the keyboard file is based on the XKB options
       XkbModel, XkbLayout, XkbVariant and XkbOptions.  Unfortunately, there is little documenta‐
       tion  how  to use them.  Description of all possible values for these options can be found
       in the file xorg.lst.

       You might want to read “The XKB Configuration Guide” by Kamil Toman and Ivan U. Pascal:


       Other possible readings are:


       The complete XKB-specification can be found on


       The file keyboard consists of variable settings in POSIX format:


       Only one assignment is allowed per line.  Comments (starting with '#') are also allowed.

       The following variables can be set.

              Specifies the XKB keyboard model name.  Default: pc105 for most platforms.

              Specifies the XKB keyboard layout name. This is usually  the  country  or  language
              type of the keyboard. Default: us for most platforms

              Specifies the XKB keyboard variant components. These can be used to further specify
              the keyboard layout details. Default: not set.

              Specifies the XKB keyboard option components.  Options usually relate to the behav‐
              ior of the special keys (<Shift>, <Control>, <Alt>, <CapsLock>, etc.)  Default: not

              Determines the behavior of <BackSpace> and <Delete> keys on the  console.   Allowed
              values: bs, del and guess.  In most cases you can specify guess here, in which case
              the current terminal settings and the kernel of your operating system will be  used
              to  determine  the  correct  value.   Value bs specifies VT100-conformant behavior:
              <BackSpace> will generate ^H (ASCII BS) and <Delete> will generate ^?  (ASCII DEL).
              Value del specifies VT220-conformant behavior: <BackSpace> will generate ^?  (ASCII
              DEL) and <Delete> will generate a special function sequence.

       KMAP   Usually this variable will be unset but if you don't want to use a  XKB  layout  on
              the  console,  you  can specify an alternative keymap here.  Specify a file that is
              suitable as input for loadkeys(1) on Linux or for kbdcontrol(1) on FreeBSD.

       The standard location of the keyboard file is /etc/default/keyboard.  Description  of  all
       available   keyboard   models,   layouts,   variants   and   options   is   available   in
       /usr/share/X11/xkb/rules/xorg.lst.    In   most   cases,   in    /usr/share/keymaps/    or
       /usr/share/syscons/keymaps/  you will find several keymaps that can be used with the vari‐
       able KMAP.

       In Debian systems, changes in /etc/default/keyboard do not become immediately  visible  to
       X.  You should either reboot the system, or use

           udevadm trigger --subsystem-match=input --action=change

       When a triple-layout is used, i.e. a layout with three XKB groups, then the group toggling
       happens in the following way: Group1 -> Group2 -> Group1 -> Group3.

       On FreeBSD triple- and quadruple-layouts are not supported (only the first and the  second
       layout are taken into account).

       The option grp:shifts_toggle is not supported.

       The  following  configuration  will  give you the standard US QWERTY layout (us).  The key
       <Menu> will act as a compose key (compose:menu) and <CapsLock> will act as  third  control
       key (ctrl:nocaps).


       In the following configuration the right <Alt> key (grp:toggle) will toggle between US QW‐
       ERTY layout (us) and Greek (gr) layout.  The option grp_led:scroll is ignored on the  con‐
       sole  but  in  X  in means to use the ScrollLock keyboard led as indicator for the current
       layout (US or Greek).


       In  the  following  configuration  the  <Control>+<Shift>  key  combination  will   toggle
       (grp:ctrl_shift_toggle)  between  French  keyboard (fr) without dead keys (nodeadkeys) and
       British (gb) “Dvorak” (dvorak) keyboard.  The right <Win> key will be a compose-key  (com‐
       pose:rwin) and the right <Alt> key will function as AltGr (lv3:lalt_switch).


       setupcon(1), ckbcomp(1), console-setup(5), loadkeys(1), kbdcontrol(1)

console-setup                               2011-03-17                                KEYBOARD(5)

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