[18.04] This great windoze keyboard shortcut is still missing IMO



This is a very minor consideration but what do you think if hitting ALT+F4 once all of the screens are closed would prompt a user logoff/power off to be a good thing or if I’m still too much in a m$ state of mind here?

PS: I do understand that it’s possible to shortcut “logoff” using other keys yet my request is just a matter of (curious) perspective. :slight_smile:



hey, it’s linux - we can do whatever we want!


ALT+F4 is possible. I have it on an XFCE distribution

XFCE implements it similar to windows based on ‘close window’ command
command will close current window OR open shutdown menu if there are no open windows

change keyboard setting to use logout command and will ignore open windows and open shutdown menu

or use ‘poweroff’ to bypass menus choices and shut down immediately


One could also suggest CTRL+ALT+DEL should open the “Task Manager”, which in GNOME 2 (MATE) shows the shut-down dialog instead. My personal opinion is that this aren’t Windows (unless someone sets the layout to Redmond). :eyeglasses:

But technically I don’t actually know which application is responsible – I’m guessing Caja… since it’s Windows Explorer on Windows that listens to ALT+F4 when focused on the desktop.


I love a keyboard shortcut discussion - I pride myself in being able to do most work without a steenking mouse in both MATE and Windows environments. :slight_smile:

But over the years I lost the desire to match the two and pretty much go with the flow. Each has pluses and minuses. And yes, in Windows I do Alt+F4 to close all the apps, one by one to insure everything is saved, until the desktop remains, in focus, and shutdown/logoff comes up.

First, MATE no longer has logout and shutdowns in one app. It did in 8.04 Hardy Heron (a Gnome 2 lineage of MATE from 2008) and remember missing that. I recall it was separated to enhance multiple login switching. To this day I reassign Ctl+Alt+L to logout instead of LockScreen.

But have you seen some of the MATE pluses? One of my favorites is unlock the screensaver by JUST typing your password - no Crl+Alt+Del ritual needed. Type the first character and watch what happens to make sure it’s working.

I suggest exploring the “flavor” of MATE keyboard shortcuts. It’s really very good - just a little different here and there.


Hey guys,

Thanks a bunch for all of your replies and sorry for not reviving this thread earlier.

So, let’s get going:

@nikgnomic sweet, am in the process of getting used to XFCE via AntergOS yet I still like MATE better / thanks for the evangelisation.

@lah7 I am guessing that Caja is a standalone group and not UM related? Furthermore, not only is this not windoze, we never want it be it however even windoze has possibly 2 (or 3?) good features I think. Also, I feel ALT+F4 is more of a habit related to “close” than CTRL+ALT+DEL bering related to the Task Manager. We are just getting holistic however now :slight_smile:

@Bill_MI I believe you are my kinda guy! First, I would like to state the fact that my post was simply about making this whole experience better. In no way, shape or form, I am/was blinded by it’s pluses and raison d’être. After all, I have been a commercial Patreon for over 2 years now. Either way, I appreciate your feedback and, my bottom line would be, that my initial reason for posting this is because I too try to use the mouse as lesser as possibly can and rely on keyboard shortcuts as much as I can possibly can. Having switching my entire eco-system to UM now, I would surely like to be able to reinstate all of those l33t keyboard habits that I used to be using back in … 2008 (and 1998 for that matter).

Best regards and do not hesitate to keep those feedbacks coming for DEVs to build their roadmap around our thoughts and experiences ;D



Caja is the file manager, which also renders the desktop. So I believe it would need to be something programmed in that project to listen for those key presses, then it would be inherited by distributions like Ubuntu MATE.


Can we make this request go thru that team via this community?


LOL - I am no angel!
If I had known you were looking into Arch distros I would have been hinting at Manjaro XFCE or MATE. I learned a lot from Manjaro community, but hear Antergos community is much the same
I recommend friends new to Linux here because it has similar helpful atmosphere

I don’t think there is a way to have 2 functions on one keyboard setting
But ALT+F4 could be set to a run a script to tie the 2 functions together

  • Run “close window” in a loop until all windows closed
  • Log Out/Shutdown etc


Couldn’t there be a Python script constantly running in the background to listen for [Alt] + [F4] to execute shutdown only if there is one instance of Caja running and it is the active application? Because if I recall correctly every instance of the file manager operates as a separate instance of Caja right? Or had I been using Windows for too long?


If you love to use many keyboard shortcuts then you could think about switching to i3 window manager. It is nothing for me but after a short adaptation phase it is probably a bit more efficient.

Mickey :relaxed: