In Windows, when pressing FN key on the keyboard an animated toolbar appears on the upper edge of the screen showing some functions keys that control and display state for some features, such as sound volume, WiFi settings, Brightness, etc.

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How could we make something like that to be available on Ubuntu 16.04? From live CD the WiFi (Just the only I have tested) FN+F12, works but It does not show the animated menu for knowing the current state or the current activated/deactivated function like those found in Windows.

I have tried to search through Toshiba Website's forums and support but I could not able to find any help.

  • I had a satellite with this feature. I believe this was from a proprietary, toshiba-written piece of software for windows only.
    – chaskes
    Sep 6, 2016 at 23:13

1 Answer 1


I have that Windows feature with my Satellite too. My Dell has a little applet for Windows called QuickSet. Neither manufacturer made anything similar for Linux that I know of.

If you are interested you can press Ctrl+Alt+T to open a Terminal window. Then type:


Now use your Fn+F3 to turn brightness up and then Fn+F2 to turn brightness down. The terminal will look similar to this:

XXXX@dell:~$ acpi_listen
video/brightnessup BRTUP 00000086 00000000
 PNP0C14:00 000000d0 00000000
video/brightnessdown BRTDN 00000087 00000000
 PNP0C14:00 000000d0 00000000

By listening to these events you can trigger actions that run scripts can pop a window up on your screen or many other things. For example, I developed event -> action scripts for lid-close (to go to sleep) and lid-open (to change sound back to TV when waking up).

So to answer your question no mfg solution in Linux that I know of but, quite easy to write your nifty things in Ubuntu / Linux if you spend a little time. If you don't mind a touch of bias doing the same in Windows would be a lot more difficult.

Now that you made it this far press Ctrl+C to end the acpi_listen program and then type exit to close the Terminal.

  • In Ubuntu 16.04, the way of showing Turn off message with an overlay button may be by some mean to be modified to generate something look, at least, partially like Windows.
    – SaidbakR
    Sep 7, 2016 at 17:25
  • 1
    That sounds interesting. There is already code in Ubuntu to show volume meter when sound is adjusted up and down. It could be expanded with a legend of all function keys. Sep 7, 2016 at 21:52

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