How can I set up a keyboard shortcut that I can use instead of clicking this menu item?


I have read about various terminal commands for suspending which I could easily assign to a keyboard shortcut, but all have required the use of sudo. I am looking for a solution that I can use on a system where I do not have administer privileges.

  1. Install the powermanagement-interface package first, it provides the pmi command we will use to suspend.
    UPDATE: I looked at the source for pmi and the command it uses to suspend is:

    dbus-send --system --print-reply --dest="org.freedesktop.UPower" /org/freedesktop/UPower org.freedesktop.UPower.Suspend

    If you can't install pmi, replace pmi action suspend with that command in the next step.

  2. Open up System -> Preferences -> Keyboard Shortcuts, click on Add and put pmi action suspend as the command.

    alt text

  3. Click on the newly created shortcut entry, and set the shortcut keys.

    alt text

  • 5
    On Precise I had to apt-get install hal but working nicely now. – Cas Aug 10 '12 at 22:16
  • 6
    Doesn't work for me in 14.04 – metakermit Aug 9 '14 at 12:44
  • 1
    found the answer on this question, using the full command for suspend as the shortcut action, on Ubuntu 15.10 askubuntu.com/questions/454039/… – Nick Jan 29 '16 at 11:15
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    Suspend command that worked for me on 16.04 LTS was dbus-send --system --print-reply --dest=org.freedesktop.login1 /org/freedesktop/login1 "org.freedesktop.login1.Manager.Suspend" boolean:true – Max Goodridge Apr 4 '17 at 3:17
  • @MaxGoodridge awesome! Oddly enough .Hibernate instead of suspend requires root... – Ufos Jun 15 '18 at 14:17

For Ubuntu 15.04. and later you can use from the terminal

systemctl suspend

Then create a shortcut in the settings/keyboard app with the same command.



Reason: Ubuntu switched from upstart to systemd.

  • 3
    Tested under 16.04 – Elder Geek Aug 19 '16 at 16:17
  • In 17.10, it's Settings -> Devices -> Keyboard. – colan Dec 31 '17 at 19:55
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    It might be better to use Super + s as shortcut instead of Ctrl + S which is often used for saving the currently opened document. – thomas.mc.work Nov 21 '18 at 12:22
  • Still working on 18.04 – wranvaud Jul 4 '19 at 9:32
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    Still working on 20.04. – Giszmo Sep 2 '20 at 19:44

Same as above, but use this command instead:

dbus-send --system --print-reply --dest=org.freedesktop.login1 /org/freedesktop/login1 "org.freedesktop.login1.Manager.Suspend" boolean:true

Source: http://forum.ubuntu-fr.org/viewtopic.php?pid=16497311#p16497311

  • 4
    This really should be an edit. – muru Oct 28 '14 at 23:27
  • This is the only thing that works for me on 19.10 – dboris Dec 13 '19 at 19:18
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    Works for me on 20.04. – Giszmo Sep 2 '20 at 19:39

With Ubuntu 16.04 LTS an newer I would suggest using systemctl instead because newer systems use systemd to control things.

The safe command to run is systemctl suspend which suspends the machine immediately unless some process is asking the system to stay powered (e.g. video player showing a movie, active CD burner, another logged in user doing anything, etc).

If you want to force suspend immediately and ignore all "inhibitors" simply add -i as explained by the output of the above command.

If you want to immediately lock the screensaver and suspend the system in all cases, you can run

loginctl lock-session && systemctl suspend -i

This is better than using raw dbus to send messages because using loginctl and systemctl avoids hardcoding any info about your screensaver or session manager.


systemctl suspend -i worked for me.

Mapped to super+d in the Keyboard settings custom shortcuts.

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