Switch ctrl and alt everywhere except the terminal?

Is there a way to switch ctrl and alt everywhere except the terminal? I’m always using the wrong shortcuts when switching browser tabs or switching between applications. Even when editing text, I’m keep using ctrl-left and ctrl-right to skip back and forwards to the previous/next word.

Also shift + leftArrow or RightArrow doesn’t select text either.

Also is there a way to have global shortcuts, eg Winkey+alt+T launch the terminal in any application?

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No, since this is an intentional design decision made in BeOS for ergonomics and to align better with Mac keyboards. Haiku is carrying this over as the spiritual successor to that older operating system.

Is there an app that can change the shortcuts?

I have an (unsubmitted) patch lying around for that. Fixes SHIFT+arrows text selection in mcedit (Midnight Commander’s editor), but not on ne, nano, etc., as I would have expected.

The difference between thoses editors is that mcedit uses s-lang, when the others use ncurses. Maybe some other issue regarding ncurses?.

I haven’t submitted that fix yet for review, because… (I tend to lose focus too easily and) wasn’t really sure about part of my change. Terminal uses SHIFT+arrows to “move tabs” left/right, so I had to change those shortcuts too, and I was not really sure where to place them (I have little use for that feature, so I’m tempted to just remove them :stuck_out_tongue:).

I guess I should just send the patch for review “as-is”, and gather feedback that way :smiley:

Try adding that in the Shortcuts preflet? It is not the most intuitive app in the world, but… will work.


That would be annoying, I use them a lot! But indeed we’re always going to run into problems with Terminal and shortcuts. So, I don’t know where to put them.

ctrl and alt
it make me confused at first.
i guess haiku can not be support with Shortcut keys at that time.
:sweat_smile::sweat_smile::sweat_smile:maybe it need a tip on background ,“please press alt instead of ctrl when using shortcut keys.”

Won’t help. It’s descibed in the Haiku User Guide, and on slide 4 of the Haiku Quick Tour - both linked from the Desktop. It’s also strikingly visible in every menu of every application, e.g. Edit | Copy [ALT+C]

you are right with logic mind.
but,lots of people are chaos mind.
they like one shot to get enough information.
there is no lost to take a picture as default background with less than three information.

1,press alt instead of ctrl for shortcut key.
2,press PRINT to get one screenshot.
3,you can link your phone as wifi driver.

i have test with chaos mind.
only the three thing can not be found out by clicking mouse button with chaos mind.

What about using only one hint instead of 3: “RTFM” ?

logic mind love handbook.
chaos mind love one shot.

the reminder is not important for itself ,but for Customer experience.
people will notice that haiku attach importance to
them by reminder。

this is about popularize.
if you use information like “RTFM”,they will think about being scolded in classroom.
this is terrible Customer experience.

don’t give them up, even with very chaos mind.
haiku is product after all, and need more customer.

Am I weird that I like that Windows/Linux, Apple and Haiku all a different primary “command” key? It helps me keep on the right track/mindset as I move between systems. That said, making it selectable in preferences would be useful for those who don’t work this way.


Do not get me wrong, i have nothing against making the OS simpler, easier to consume to everybody, i am just against the way you propose and against the way you communicate it. It feels like in your head Haiku already became some corporate entity which have to grow, inclusive scraping the bottom of the barrel.

Changes in user group is inevitable, but i need somebody to draw me an optimistic picture how the focus-change from developers to users can positively affect the development progress of the OS, without using the keywords diversity, inclusivity and other fancy words.

You are referring to users as “customers”, which extends the meaning of the word “user” in a specific way: the customer is entitled for support, while the user is not. I fear this is dangerous path and it should be discussed before the project takes it.

I am getting worried because this culture change in the Haiku user group. It feels like corporation-isation, pushing responsibility to others, a switch from hobby to serious work.


It feels like you would like to use Haiku as a main OS, but presumably you are not satisfied with the peace or the level of the development (or both) and you see the “getting Haiku popular” way as a solution to get more workforce into the project to get (your) user experience better which is basically the" let somebody else fix it for me", which was never a winner strategy, as it means losing control over the solution. Instead of trying to popularize the OS to get your issues fixed you could try to cut out the unnecessary part and fix the system yourself for yourself. This can result in a thriving community, not just a stagnating one where everybody have ideas but not enough developers to implement them.


I would like to think about Haiku like a source of enjoyment, a fruit of passionate work instead of a mundane work and i would like to see creative users, not entitled customers. From my point of view this is a big philosophical difference.


i also against to take so many duty.
in my eyes, i help haiku by sharing using experience.
lots of people are chaos mind, not logic mind.
so, someone should tell them how to use haiku directly, not just tell them to read the book.
Customer experience is very important.
yes, i use the word again.
because i am a customer service.
and i guess lots of fan are doing service with un-realized status in open source world.

it is your duty to develop haiku by your style.
my duty is telling them which thing we have been support ;something may take much more time to finish ; something is not suitable.

just some service skills.
i am sorry to make you confused.