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I've just upgraded to beta 2 of Oneiric/11.10 and the typing break has gone.

I've gone into the system settings and looked in "Keyboard Layout" and "Keyboard" and can't find anything. Has it just been dropped?

Is there some hidden way to re-enable it?

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5 Answers 5

up vote 14 down vote accepted


Gnome 3 developers have dropped this from gnome-control-center with a recommendation that it be repackaged and available as a separate application. A launchpad wishlist item was requested.

An alternative in for typing break is workrave. It is now available as a backport:

sudo apt-get install workrave

You need to white-list this application to appear in the Unity indicator-applet. Read this question if you want a more detailed explanation about what to do.


An enterprising developer has resurrected DrWright for Precise. The package is available from a PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:drwright/stable
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install drwright


Note, that for 12.10,13.10,14.04 ppa is not up to date, so you have to use precise repositories:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/drwright/stable/ubuntu precise main
deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/drwright/stable/ubuntu precise main

Find the applet in the Control-Center to launch:

enter image description here

image and source for the information

In a similar manner as for 11.10, workrave is available from the Precise Universe repository if you do not wish to use a PPA.

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Any update for 12.10? –  takeshin Jan 19 '13 at 12:29
@takeshin: same as for 12.04 –  Hamish Downer Feb 7 '13 at 10:38
@HamishDowner Thanks, works after downgrading to precise repos –  takeshin Feb 7 '13 at 11:11
It's not working for 14.04 –  Moreno Aug 11 at 16:37

The typing break is back in Ubuntu 14.04, as mate-typing-monitor (part of the MATE desktop). I'm not sure what package it is included in, though. It works fine for me even under XFCE.

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RSIBreak is a good alternative for Workrave! You can easily get it via Ubuntu Software Center!

It is a KDE application (so it will it install alot of the KDE packages) - however it works OK in Unity.

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I have made Workrave kinda working again in Unity, via a floating xfce4-panel:


It is a hack, but I use it now and it works.

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Patched for unity and set default to disabled. After you install it, log out / log in. You can find it in gnome control center.

You can convert the drwright rpm to a deb package:

sudo apt-get install alien  
sudo alien -c drwright-3.2.2-1.fc17.i686.rpm  
sudo dpkg -i drwright_3.2.2-2_i386.deb  

Once you install it, typing breaks are configurable via the System Settings menu.

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+1 for my ppa :) –  medigeek Feb 15 '12 at 9:29
Any update for 12.10? –  takeshin Jan 19 '13 at 12:29

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