Ok, I've used Ubuntu with GNOME for a while, but now I'm using XUbuntu. In Ubuntu, there used to be a keyboard preference which makes the numpad more sane, it was called something like "Make Shift+NumPad work like Windows".

The problem this options solves is, that when you press NumPad 7, it acts like the "Home" key, which is all fine, but if you press Shift+NumPad 7, it acts like the "7" key, which is not fine because I'm on a laptop and the regular "Home" key requires me to pull of an anatomically insane move. Anyways, this option made Shift+NumPad 7 act like the "Home" key.

I can't find that option under XUbuntu. How do I set it?

Update: GUI or command line, doesn't matter.


After some grepping I found the solution: You need to add the numpad:microsoft option to the XkbOptions. On older Ubuntus, do that in your xorg.conf. On newer ones open the file /etc/default/keyboard and change this line:




Save and reboot (restarting X doesn't seem to work, at least not with RAlt+PrintScreen+K). You may need to run sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration for changes to take effect.

  • Can you adapt this answer for a non-root user? – einpoklum Nov 3 '15 at 16:25
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    Just used this successfully on Ubuntu 15.10. Thanks! – Don Branson Mar 5 '16 at 17:27
  • @einpoklum - you need root. – Don Branson Mar 5 '16 at 17:27
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    No need to reboot (on 16.04). Just need to run sudo dpkg-reconfigure keyboard-configuration. – estibordo Dec 18 '16 at 15:56
  • The reboot wasn't required for me. Otherwise, great answer. – Abhishek Divekar Feb 16 '17 at 7:33

Ubuntu 14.04 have no more "Miscellaneous compatibility options" in the keyboard settings. Editing /etc/default/keyboard also is not a working solution. But dconf database contains the required options with key /org/gnome/desktop/input-sources/xkb-options. This options should be completed with numpad:microsoft to something like ['grp:alt_shift_toggle', 'grp_led:scroll', 'numpad:microsoft'] manually in dconf-editor or using this script:

# !/bin/bash
old=`gsettings get org.gnome.desktop.input-sources xkb-options`
new=`echo $old | sed "s/'numpad:microsoft'//g" | sed -r "s/(, )+/, /g" | sed -r "s/(, )?]/, 'numpad:microsoft']/"`
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.input-sources xkb-options "$new"
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    awesome!! what on earth was someone smoking to remove this... Or, if this feature is some "evil windows thing", how are you supposed to do shift-end on the laptop, when the regular key is in a hard to reach place? – peter karasev Aug 18 '15 at 15:04
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    Great answer ! Btw instead of using the command line you can also install the dconf-editor in Ubuntu >= 12.04 Check this answer for more details askubuntu.com/questions/22313/… – Storm Sep 21 '15 at 8:04
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    Works like a charm in 16.10. dconf-editor helped too, thanks @Storm! – Konrad Garus Feb 20 '17 at 17:50
  • On Elementary OS Loki, this is the only option that seems to work. – Abhishek Divekar Mar 9 '17 at 7:07

Glad I found your post. Using Natty Narwhal, I found a similar option in the Keyboard settings.

  1. Search for Keyboard
  2. Click Layouts tab
  3. Click Options button
  4. Expand miscellaneous compatibility options
  5. Check "Shift with numeric keypad keys works as in MS Windows"
  6. Close and you're good!
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    That option has been removed in 13.10. It can still be selected by installing gnome-tweak-tool: sudo apt-get install gnome-link-tool. Then you'll find it under "Typing" in the "Miscellaneous compatibility options" list. – f.cipriani Jan 8 '14 at 22:02
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    @f.cipriani I don't know if that was a typo in your comment or if the tool has been renamed, but the current correct name is gnome-tweak-tool. – waldyrious May 12 '14 at 10:12
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    Thanks @waldir, that was a typo, it is actually gnome-tweak-tool – f.cipriani May 12 '14 at 13:30
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    In Linux Mint 18 (Cinnamon), it appears the desired option under "Miscellaneous compatibility options" is "Numlock on: digits, Shift switches to arrow keys, Numlock off: always arrow keys (as in MS Windows)". – theDrake May 4 '17 at 21:55
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    @theDrake, thanks. In 18.3 MATE also. – Roman Grinyov Feb 11 '18 at 20:17

In Xubuntu 16.04 the XKBOPTIONS setting ( XKBOPTIONS="numpad:microsoft" ) in /etc/default/keyboard is ignored - I consider this to be a bug.

I'm using the following command as workaround:
setxkbmap -option 'numpad:microsoft'

In order to run the above command automatically when starting the graphical desktop environment, I've create an Application Autostart entry:
Menu > Settings > Session and Startup > Application Autostart > Add

          Name: Make Shift+NumPad work like MS Windows
Description: whatsoever
   Command:setxkbmap -option 'numpad:microsoft'

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    Works great, and without restart, thanks! But what do you mean by "Menu > Settings"? From where? I don't think you mean system settings. – David Parks Oct 14 '16 at 18:51
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    Hi David. I have created 5 screenshots: (1/5) imgur.com/a/h00IQ | (2/5) imgur.com/a/xUcJS | (3/5) imgur.com/a/n9Pq3 | (4/5) imgur.com/a/0m8Df | (5/5) imgur.com/a/rMVdj - hope this helps ;-) . – F.M. Oct 15 '16 at 23:41
  • This works on XUbuntu 18.04. No restart needed – abjbhat Jul 2 '18 at 14:50
  • Confirmed it works in 19 as well. The auto start is not here though. Just add a .sh to /etc/init.d – Emad Jul 20 at 17:49

I had a similar problem on lubuntu. I tried changing the /etc/default/keyboard file, but it didn't help.

I think the reason might be that I had Layout changer on my system. However, adding numpad:microsoft in the "Advanced setxkbmap Options" field in the options of the Keyboard Layout Handler actually worked. I didn't even have to reboot the X.


For uBuntu 18.04, another options is to use Dconf-Editor, a powerful GUI for most uBuntu settings. If not installed, open Terminal and type:

  • apt-get update
  • apt-get install dconf-editor -y

Open dconf Editor, then /org/gnome/desktop/input-sources/xkb-options.

On a fresh uBuntu installation, Custom value will be blank. Turn Use default value OFF then:

  • insert ['numpad:microsoft'] (if blank) or
  • append , 'numpad:microsoft' (after whatever is there, if not blank)

For example, ['caps:none', 'numpad:microsoft'] which both disables Caps Lock and uses the NumPad as in Windows. Close dconf Editor, no reboot required.


For me 'keypad:pointerkeys' option helped on Lubuntu 18.04 Bionic Beaver

  • I frequent many sites in stackexchange.com and I think I have noticed a disturbing pattern: the sites with the highest percentage of unhelpful answers seem to be the linux sites. – Mike Nakis Oct 1 at 11:56

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