How to Create Keyboard Shortcuts on Linux Mint

Endrit Qerreti

Endrit Qerreti

In this tutorial you will learn how to create shortcuts or edit the already existing shortcuts on Linux Mint.

Shortcuts are helpful commands when you need to launch an software, take a screenshot or do something custom when you press any key combination. For example, if you press CTRL + ALT + T it would open the terminal on Linux.

Let's say you want to create a shortcut to be able to take a screenshot via your preferred keys, without having to use the print screen button or if your keyboard doesn't have one then creating an shortcut to do this thing would be necessary to do.

Step 1 - Open the Dashboard Menu

Click over the Linux mint icon to open the dashboard menu

Now lookup for keyboard settings, keyboard is located on All applications sections, or you can simply type the keyword "Keyboard" on the search box and then simply click on the keyboard.

Go to Keyboard by typing Keyboard on the search box

Step 2 - Go to Shortcuts Window

Once you are on Keyboard settings Window you need to go to Shortcut sections, click over Shortcuts button and it should take you to the Shortcut section.

And the Shortcut Window will look like this, now on this window you can create your favorite shortcut or edit the default shortcuts that are already created by your system.

Step 3 - Create your shortcut

Creating a shortcut is very easy, all you have to do is click the button "Add custom shortcut"

This will open this window, where you have to set a name for your shortcut and the command.

Name - Allows you to choose a name for your shortcut

Command - Is the command that you want executed when you press your key combinations

If you want to create a shortcut that launches an application installed on your computer, then we'll need to put the application's path to the command box

For example let's say you want to launch firefox when you press CTRL + F, to do this you need to put the firefox's execution path on the command box.

Firefox Execution's path is /usr/bin/firefox

Once you have set the name and the command click the "Add" button to create the shortcut

This will create the shortcut as shown on the image below

Next click to "OwlHowTo" and then double click to the first keyboard binding. Once the "Pick an accelerator" shows up you need to press keys that you want to set for the shortcut that you are creating.

For example, in this tutorial I created a shortcut named "OwlHowTo" which launches Firefox when pressing CTRL+F

CTRL + F is one of the most used keyboard shortcut commands that's why I took it as example. However, when creating keyboard shortcuts make sure you are not creating a shortcut to do something which is already doing, for example in this case CTRL + F is the find command, no matter where or what application you are using when you press CTRL + F it will run the find command, which means the find command will not run when you press CTRL + F but it will run the shortcut that you created. To avoid this from happening you could set a unique keyboard shortcut which will not interfere or overwrite the existing shortcuts on your computer.

And the shortcut should look like this

Step 4 - Run your shortcut

Now that you have created the shortcut, it's time to run it and see if it works correctly, simply press the keyboard bindings that you set on the step 4, the key combination should do exactly what you programmed it to do.


By now you should know how to create a custom keyboard shortcut on Linux Mint. Even though this tutorial was created by using Linux Mint, the steps of creating a keyboard shortcut are similar and should apply to all linux distros.