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       loadkeys - load keyboard translation tables


       loadkeys [ -d --default ] [ -h --help ] [ -q --quiet ] [ -u --unicode ]
       [  -v  --verbose  [  -v  --verbose  ]...]  [  -m  --mktable  ]   [   -c
       --clearcompose ] [ -s --clearstrings ] [ filename... ]


       The loadkeys program reads the file or files specified by filename...

       Its main purpose is to load the kernel keymap for the console.


       If  the  -d  (or  --default ) option is given, loadkeys loads a default
       keymap,   probably   the   file[.gz]    typically    in
       /usr/share/keymaps/i386/qwerty/   or   in  /usr/src/linux/drivers/char.
       (Probably the former was user-defined, while the  latter  is  a  qwerty
       keyboard  map for PCs - maybe not what was desired.)  Sometimes, with a
       strange keymap loaded (with the minus on some obscure unknown  modifier
       combination) it is easier to type ‘loadkeys defkeymap’.


       The  main  function  of  loadkeys  is  to  load  or modify the keyboard
       driver’s translation tables.  When specifying the file names,  standard
       input  can be denoted by dash (-). If no file is specified, the data is
       read from the standard input.

       For many countries and keyboard types appropriate keymaps are available
       already,  and  a  command like ‘loadkeys uk’ might do what you want. On
       the other hand, it is easy to construct one’s own keymap. The user  has
       to tell what symbols belong to each key. She can find the keycode for a
       key by  use  of  showkey(1),  while  the  keymap  format  is  given  in
       keymaps(5) and can also be seen from the output of dumpkeys(1).


       If  the  input  file  does not contain any compose key definitions, the
       kernel accent table is left unchanged, unless the -c (or --clearcompose
       )  option  is  given, in which case the kernel accent table is emptied.
       If the input file does contain compose key definitions,  then  all  old
       definitions  are  removed,  and  replaced by the specified new entries.
       The kernel accent table is  a  sequence  of  (by  default  68)  entries
       describing  how  dead  diacritical  signs and compose keys behave.  For
       example, a line

              compose ’,’ ’c’ to ccedilla

       means that <ComposeKey><,><c> must  be  combined  to  <ccedilla>.   The
       current  content  of  this  table can be see using ‘dumpkeys --compose-


       The option -s (or --clearstrings ) clears the kernel string  table.  If
       this  option  is  not given, loadkeys will only add or replace strings,
       not remove them.  (Thus, the option -s is required  to  reach  a  well-
       defined  state.)  The kernel string table is a sequence of strings with
       names like F31. One can  make  function  key  F5  (on  an  ordinary  PC
       keyboard)  produce  the  text  ‘Hello!’,  and Shift+F5 ‘Goodbye!’ using

              keycode 63 = F70 F71
              string F70 = "Hello!"
              string F71 = "Goodbye!"

       in the keymap.  The default bindings for the function keys are  certain
       escape sequences mostly inspired by the VT100 terminal.


       If  the  -m  (or  --mktable  )  option  is given loadkeys prints to the
       standard output a file that may be used as /usr/src/linux/drivers/char
       /defkeymap.c,  specifying  the  default  key bindings for a kernel (and
       does not modify the current keymap).


       -h --help
              print the version number  and  a  short  usage  message  to  the
              programs standard error output and exit.

       -v --verbose
              Print  details  about  changes.   If used several times, be even
              more verbose.

       -u --unicode
              Go into unicode mode; characters outputted will be in UTF-8.

       -q --quiet
              Do not print standard messages.

       -c --clearcompose
              Clear the kernel’s compose table (also called accent table).  If
              this  option is not given, and if this file does not contain any
              compose key  definitions,  the  kernel  compose  table  is  left

       -s --clearstrings
              Clear  the  kernel  string  table.  If this option is not given,
              loadkeys will only add or replace strings, not remove them.


       /usr/share/keymaps/ default directory for keymap files.

       /usr/share/keymaps/defkeymap.kmap default keymap loaded by -d option.


       Note that anyone having read access to /dev/console  can  run  loadkeys
       and  thus change the keyboard layout, possibly making it unusable. Note
       that the keyboard translation table  is  common  for  all  the  virtual
       consoles,  so  any  changes  to  the  keyboard  bindings affect all the
       virtual consoles simultaneously.

       Note that because the changes affect all  the  virtual  consoles,  they
       also outlive your session. This means that even at the login prompt the
       key bindings may not be what the user expects.

       The default keymap should be the default keymap compiled in the  kernel
       (ie.  the one in /usr/src/linux/drivers/char/defkeymap.c).


       dumpkeys(1), kbd_mode(1), keymaps(5), setkeycodes(8).