I accidentally pressed Ctrl+Alt+F12 and my display turned to black... I then had to make a reboot.. What did it do to my system? Also what does Alt+ F8 to F10 do?
Often we talk about a virtual console as a usable text console. So we often say there are six virtual consoles, accessible with Alt+F1 through Alt+F6 (holding down Ctrl too if you're in the GUI when you want to switch). And we often say that then, separately, is the GUI, which can be switched (back) to with Alt+F7.
But in fact,
Virtual consoles higher than
Thus, when you press Ctrl+Alt+F12, you get a blank screen because you are now on
As an interesting exercise, you might try running:
Then press Alt+F12 (or Ctrl+Alt+F12 if you're in the GUI rather than one of the first 6 virtual consoles).
This will bring you to
(If you wanted to permanently create usable text-based consoles on higher-numbered virtual consoles, then you should configure
Here is a brief explanation:
The following Keys are for going to the Terminal (The black background, white letters way):
Ctrl+Alt+F1 - Will send user to
Ctrl+Alt+F2 - Will send user to
Ctrl+Alt+F3 - Will send user to
Ctrl+Alt+F4 - Will send user to
Ctrl+Alt+F5 - Will send user to
Ctrl+Alt+F6 - Will send user to
For GUI Terminals (Where X is typically running, or better said, where you land when Unity appears and everything looks good. The default one where you start the GUI would be F7):
Ctrl+Alt+F7 - Will send user to the 1st GUI Terminal
Ctrl+Alt+F8 - Will send user to the 2nd GUI Terminal
Ctrl+Alt+F9 - Will send user to the 3rd GUI Terminal
Ctrl+Alt+F10 - Will send user to the 4th GUI Terminal
Ctrl+Alt+F11 - Will send user to the 5th GUI Terminal
Ctrl+Alt+F12 - Will send user to the 6th GUI Terminal
The thing to note here is that you can go from one terminal to the other by pressing the corresponding keys. You should also note that, since you are running one instance of the X server (one Unity running) you will only have F7 working for the GUI Terminals. If you open another X Server session, it will start in F8 and you can switch between both by pressing the correct keys. You can keep doing this for a total (default) of 6 times which would be F7 up to F12.
Pressing Ctrl+Alt+f12 will take you to the ubuntu system console wich sometimes replaces the terminal on some ocasions like installing a driver.