Activating Numlock on Bootup

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Revision as of 10:44, 16 September 2011 by Gladstone (talk | contribs) (→‎TTY (Teletype) Consoles 1-6: -- for brevity, remove the historic (2009) note about vc[n] -> tty[n])
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TTY (Teletype) Consoles 1-6

To activate NumLock during normal bootup in TTY consoles 1-6 (tty1 -> tty6), add the following line to Template:Filename:

for tty in /dev/tty?; do /usr/bin/setleds -D +num < "$tty"; done

If strange things start to happen (the NumLock LED is on, but the num pad still works as arrow keypad), there seems to be a conflict between setleds and Xserver. Limit the for command only to the consoles you have set on Template:Filename. For example, for the first 6 consoles (default) : for tty in /dev/tty{1..6}; do ...

If you use startx to start your X session, simply install the numlockx package and add it to your Template:Filename file.

Install numlockx:

# pacman -S numlockx

Add it to Template:Filename before exec:

# ~/.xinitrc
# Executed by startx (run your window manager from here)

numlockx &

exec your_window_manager


If you use KDM as a login manager, add :

numlockx on

to your {{Filename|/usr/share/config/kdm/Xsetup, or to Template:Filename if you're using KDM3.

Note that this file lives outside of Pacman's protected area, so it might be overwritten on update without warning or creating a .pacnew file. If it bothers you, add the following line to your Template:Filename file (omit the leading slash in the path):

NoUpgrade = usr/share/config/kdm/Xsetup

KDE4 Users

Go to System Settings, under the Hardware/Input Devices/Keyboard item you will find an option to select the behavior of NumLock.

Alternate Method

You may alternatively add a script to your Template:Filename directory:

$ nano ~/.kde4/Autostart/numlockx

Add the following:

numlockx on

And make it executable:

$ chmod +x ~/.kde4/Autostart/numlockx


First make sure that you have numlockx (from extra) installed. Then, GDM users may add the following code to Template:Filename:

if [ -x /usr/bin/numlockx ]; then
      /usr/bin/numlockx on


In the file Template:Filename find the line:

#numlock             on

and remove the "#"