Since I installed Ubuntu (13.04; before that I was using Windows) I haven't been able to use non-letters keys (such as 123[];/.,) in any application. When I was installing Ubuntu I chose Czech layout, but when I switch to US layout it makes no different. I have tried external keyboard (I'm using Lenovo ThinkPad E430), but it doesn't work either. Can someone help me please?

  • 1
    Are you sure that you switched correctly to US layout? Can you shou us a picture with your layout chart? Oct 4, 2013 at 22:16
  • Open a terminal, run the command xev, and in the xev window, type a non-letter key. What appears in the terminal (the block of 5 lines starting with “KeyPress event”)? Oct 4, 2013 at 22:20

1 Answer 1


If you use czech layout, you can type for example [ as follow:

czech layout chart

The things goes something like follows. Let's take for example this key:

czech key

To type ú - press ú.

To type / - press Shift+ú.

To type [ - press AltGr+ú.

To type ÷ - press AltGr+Shift+ú.

  • I'm sorry I just partly solved it myself. When I opened keyboard layout settings, the Czech layout was chosen as a primary layout (then it really makes no different which layout I was currently using and it didn't work). But I tried to changed it, so the US layout is the primary one now and it works perfectly. Now I can use non-letters keys in all application, but I cannot have Czech layout set as a default one. Is there some simple fix to this (Czech layout set as a default one and still be able to use non-letters keys)?
    – Tatarkow
    Oct 4, 2013 at 22:46
  • 1
    @Tatarkow Yes, follow the instructions from the answer to type ant character do you wish when you use Czech layout. Oct 4, 2013 at 22:49
  • I maybe didn't express correctly, when I said in any application I didn't mean for example libre office (I know how to write symbols), I meant application like games or blender, where the keys do something. And the problem is that, if the Czech layout is set as a default layout, those programs won't register if I press the non-letter key or not.
    – Tatarkow
    Oct 4, 2013 at 23:05
  • @Tatarkow Well, the when you will go in a game, you can switch quickly between keyboard layouts. Oct 4, 2013 at 23:11
  • OK, at first I didn't change the layout properly, so there was no way to use those keys, which was a complication, but as I wrote I had discovered that, I hadn't change it properly and if I do, then it works (I still have to change the layout but it's not a big deal). I'm sorry for bothering you (I must look like an idiot now) and thank you.
    – Tatarkow
    Oct 4, 2013 at 23:20

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