dconf editor indicates the keys whose values have been altered by the user by changing the key's font to bold as shown in the snapshot.


So I wonder if there is a way to dump all the keys (including their schema) which have been modified manually by user or changed to something other than the default? That would prove very helpful to solve many desktop environment issues, or at least for me :)


1 Answer 1


dconf provides such an option (Ref: man dconf)

  • To dump only user-altered keys:

      dconf dump / > dump.dconf
  • To restore:

      dconf load / < dump.dconf
  • 4
    You can add dconf dump / | gzip -9 > ~/Dropbox/Backup/dconf-$(date +%Y-%m-%d_%T).bak.gz to your /etc/cron.monthly/. Oct 5, 2017 at 16:09
  • 1
    How to dump all keys incl. default? To my surprise dconf list /x/dm/slick-greeter just shows the 1 property I just changed, not the 2 dozen (in light gray) dconf-editor shows... (apparently those “defaults” come from gsettings? gsettings list-recursively | grep "x.dm.slick" does the job.
    – Frank N
    Dec 28, 2020 at 10:28
  • @FrankNocke yes, gsettings shows the final value of the keys as user apps see it through gsettings API. gsettings list-recursively is the only way i know but it does not show reallocated schemas. Beaware of gsettings values priority list: locks, user db, system db (system db is compiled from: overrides, schemas defaults)
    – user.dz
    Dec 30, 2020 at 22:18

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