I know that you can go into the System Settings->Keyboard->Shortcuts and change the bindings for switching between workspaces in the Navigation tab, but this isn't working for me. I can change many other things in Shortcuts, like the shortcut for opening terminal, but for some reason I cannot change the navigation bindings. Is there another way to change this or is there someway to get it to recognize my changes there?

And just so we are clear, I have tried changing it in the Navigation tab to CTRL+(LEFT/RIGHT/UP/DOWN) and F1/F2/F3/F4 and CTRL+ALT+SUPER+(LEFT/RIGHT/UP/DOWN), but none of those work, it just doesn't respond to any of my changes and stays as CTRL+ALT+(LEFT/RIGHT/UP/DOWN)....

Any help would be appreciated, I have been search for 2 days for this and everything says to change it in the System Settings->Keyboard->Shortcuts, but it doesn't work...


2 Answers 2


Finally I've found a solution.

It appears, that you need to manually edit settings with the dconf-editor (dconf-tools package).

To edit workspace keyboard binding one should use dconf-tool and edit settings under path org -> gnome -> desktop -> wm -> keybindings.

The syntax for keybindings is the same as in other Gnome editions and the same as displayed in "System Settings->Keyboard->Shortcuts".

  • 1
    Pretty useful when the Back and Forward Navigation shortcuts in Intellij didn't works, even after disabling the shortcut using the GUI tool. Oct 29, 2014 at 12:16

You can also set them in the console with

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings move-to-workspace-left "['<Control><Shift><Alt>Left']"
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings move-to-workspace-right "['<Control><Shift><Alt>Right']"
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings move-to-workspace-up "['<Control><Shift><Alt>Up']"
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings move-to-workspace-down "['<Control><Shift><Alt>Down']"

changing the given key combinations as you see fit.

Left and Right don't make much sense in vanilla Gnome 3, because the workspace layout is strictly vertical, but I use the Workspace Grid extension, so that's why I listed them.

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