Libinput-gestures is a utility which reads libinput gestures
from your touchpad and maps them to gestures you configure in a
configuration file. Each gesture can be configured to activate a shell
command which is typically an xdotool command to action
desktop/window/application keyboard combinations and commands. See the
examples in the provided
libinput-gestures.conf file. My motivation
for creating this is to use triple swipe up/down to switch workspaces,
and triple swipe right/left to go backwards/forwards in my browser, as
per the default configuration.
This small and simple utility is only intended to be used temporarily until GNOME and other DE's action libinput gestures natively. It parses the output of the libinput-list-devices and libinput-debug-events utilties so is a little fragile to any version changes in their output format.
This utility is developed and tested on Arch linux using the GNOME 3 DE
on Xorg and Wayland. It works somewhat incompletely on Wayland (via
XWayland). See the WAYLAND section below and the comments in the default
libinput-gestures.conf file. It has been reported to work with
I am not sure how well this will work on all distros and DE's etc.
The latest version and documentation is available at http://github.com/bulletmark/libinput-gestures.
IMPORTANT: You must be a member of the input group to have permission to read the touchpad device:
sudo gpasswd -a $USER input
After executing the above command, log out of your session completely, and then log back in to assign this group.
NOTE: Arch users can just install libinput-gestures from the AUR. Then skip to the next CONFIGURATION section.
You need python3, python2 is not supported. You also need libinput release 1.0 or later. Install prerequisites:
# E.g. On Arch: sudo pacman -S xdotool wmctrl # E.g. On Debian based systems, e.g. Ubuntu: sudo apt-get install xdotool wmctrl # E.g. On Fedora: sudo dnf install xdotool wmctrl
Debian and Ubuntu users also need to install
libinput-tools if that
package exists in your release:
sudo apt-get install libinput-tools
Install this software:
git clone http://github.com/bulletmark/libinput-gestures cd libinput-gestures sudo ./libinput-gestures-setup install
Many users will be happy with the default configuration in which case you can just type the following and you are ready to go:
libinput-gestures-setup start libinput-gestures-setup autostart
Otherwise, if you want to create your own custom gestures etc, keep reading ..
The default gestures are in
/etc/libinput-gestures.conf. If you want
to create your own custom gestures then copy that file to
~/.config/libinput-gestures.conf and edit it. The available gestures
- swipe up (e.g. map to GNOME/KDE/etc move to next workspace)
- swipe down (e.g map to GNOME/KDE/etc move to prev workspace)
- swipe left (e.g. map to Web browser go forward)
- swipe right (e.g. map to Web browser go back)
- pinch in (e.g. map to GNOME open/close overview)
- pinch out (e.g. map to GNOME open/close overview)
You can choose to specify a specific finger count, typically 3 or 4 fingers. If specified then the command is executed when exactly that number of fingers is used in the gesture. If not specified then the command is executed when that gesture is executed with any number of fingers. Gestures specified with finger count have priority over the same gesture specified without any finger count.
Of course, 2 finger swipes and taps are already interpreted by your DE and apps for scrolling etc.
IMPORTANT: Test the program. Check for reported errors in your custom gestures, missing packages, etc:
# Ensure the program is stopped libinput-gestures-setup stop # Test to print out commands that would be executed: libinput-gestures -d (<ctrl-c> to stop)
Confirm that the correct commands are reported for your 3 finger swipe up/down/left/right gestures, and your 2 or 3 finger pinch in/out gestures. Some touchpads can also support 4 finger gestures.
If you have problems then follow the TROUBLESHOOTING steps below.
STARTING AND STOPPING
Search for, and then start, the libinput-gestures app in your DE or you can start it immediately in the background using the command line utility:
You can stop the background app with:
You can enable the app to start automatically in the background when you log in with:
You can disable the app from starting automatically with:
You can restart the app or reload the configuration file with:
You can check the status of the app with:
# cd to source dir, as above git pull sudo ./libinput-gestures-setup install libinput-gestures-setup restart
libinput-gestures-setup stop libinput-gestures-setup autostop sudo libinput-gestures-setup uninstall
WAYLAND AND OTHER NOTES
This utility exploits
xdotool which unfortunately only works with
X11/Xorg based applications. So
xdotool shortcuts for the desktop do
not work under GNOME on Wayland which is now the default since GNOME
3.22. However, it is found that
wmctrl desktop selection commands do work
under GNOME on Wayland (via XWayland) so this utility adds a built-in
_internal command which can be used to switch workspaces using the
ws_down commands use
wmctrl to work out
the current workspace and select the next one. Since this works on both
Wayland and Xorg, and with GNOME, KDE, and other EWMH compliant
desktops, it is now the default configuration command for swipe up and
down commands in
libinput-gestures.conf. See the comments in that file
about other options you can do with the
xdotool commands do work via Xwayland for Xorg based apps
so, for example, page forward/back swipe gestures do work for Firefox
and Chrome browsers when running on Wayland as per the default
Please don't raise a github issue but provide litte information about your problem.
Ensure you have followed the installation instructions here carefully. Perhaps temporarily remove your custom configuration to try with the default configuration.
libinput-gestureson the command line in debug mode while performing some 3 and 4 finger left/right/up/down swipes, and some pinch in/outs. In debug mode, configured commands are not executed, they are merely output to the screen:
libinput-gestures-setup stop libinput-gestures -d (<ctrl-c> to stop)
libinput-gesturesin raw mode by repeating the same commands as above step but use the
-r(--raw) switch instead of
-d(--debug). Raw mode does nothing more than echo the raw gesture events received from
libinput-debug-events. If you see POINTER_* events but no GESTURE_* events then unfortunately your touchpad and/or libinput combination can report simple finger movements but does not report multi-finger gestures so
libinput-gestureswill not work.
Search the web for Linux kernel and/or libinput issues relating to your specific touchpad device and/or laptop/pc. Update your BIOS if possible.
If you raise an issue, please paste the screen output from steps 3 and 4 above.
Copyright (C) 2015 Mark Blakeney. This program is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License. This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or any later version. This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License at http://www.gnu.org/licenses/ for more details.