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Is it possible to disable keyboard shortcut overlay in Ubuntu 12.04?

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One reason to disable this, or to delay the appearance of the shortcut key overlay, is that it interferes with taking screen captures with the easy screen capture function normally launched by <Super>Button 1. The hints in the overlay appear in the screen capture, which is usually not what you want. – user79495 Jul 26 '12 at 18:16
I'm not using 12.10 but as far as I know this option has not been removed. You can try reseting your compiz/unity settings with $ compiz.reset, logout and login then execute $ dconf write /org/compiz/profiles/unity/plugins/unityshell/shortcut-overlay false. – Jesse Apr 4 '13 at 2:13
up vote 15 down vote accepted

For Ubuntu 12.04 and below:

The keyboard shortcut overlay is controlled by an option in the compiz unity plugin.

enter image description here

In the experimental tab of ccsm you can untick the option shown.

Remember the use of CCSM is strongly discouraged - you can achieve the same via gconf-editor

enter image description here

untick the option shown in the path /apps/compiz-1/plugins/unityshell/screen0/options/shortcut_overlay

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On my fresh 12.10 install, /apps/compiz-1/plugins/unityshell is not present. – Bart van Heukelom Nov 14 '12 at 19:59
Why is using gconf-editor preferred over using ccsm ? – Kristopher Ives Jan 22 '13 at 22:41
@KristopherIves - this Q&A will explain your question:… – fossfreedom Jan 22 '13 at 23:16
On my fairly fresh 14.04 installation, /apps/compiz-1/plugins/unityshell is also not present. – Tom Swirly Jul 19 '14 at 19:13

For Ubuntu 12.10:

You can disable this behavior following this steps:

  1. Install Ubuntu Tweak Install-It
  2. Open the label Tweaks and choice Unity


  3. Now you have to look at the second option called Shortcuts hints overlay


  4. Now click at the box to turn this feature off, so this remains as this:


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Out of curiosity, how would this be done on the command line? – Kupiakos Apr 11 '13 at 20:17
I have no idea if this is changing some specific option in the gconf schema. If so, there should be – Lucio Sep 7 '13 at 21:44

For those like me that prefer the command line:

Ubuntu 12.04 and below:

sudo apt-get install gconf-editor
gconftool-2 --set /apps/compiz-1/plugins/unityshell/screen0/options/shortcut_overlay --type bool false

Ubuntu 12.10+:

dconf write /org/compiz/profiles/unity/plugins/unityshell/shortcut-overlay false
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