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Written by:
ThomasB2k
Score: 73
votes: 81
Format: Article

 Force Quit Keyboard Shortcut


When you’re using Linux with the GNOME UI, don’t you hate it when you have to go into the terminal or add the force quit button to the panel just so you can exit an unresponsive program? In this very quick tutorial, I’m going to show you how you can assign the force quit command to a key, so when a program stops working, you can close it with the press of a button and a click of the mouse.

First, open up your GNOME menu and go to System > Preferences> Keyboard Shortcuts.

Second, click “Add” and a window should come up with 2 text boxes, labeled “Name” and “Command.” In Name, type “Force Quit” and in the Command box, type “xkill” and press Apply.

Scroll down to Custom Shortcuts in the Keyboard Shortcuts window and you’ll see Force Quit on the left side and Disabled on the right side. Click on Disabled once, and press a combination of keys on your keyboard. I used the Super (Windows logo) key and Escape, but you can use whatever you want, just as long as it doesn’t conflict any of your other shortcuts. Now Disabled will be changed to whatever keys you pressed.

Close out of the Keyboard Shortcuts window and you’re done! When ever you press your key combination, your cursor will change to crosshairs, or a skull and bones, or at least something different than just the arrow. Whatever window you click on will be forced to close, killing all of it’s processes.

If you find yourself to have accidentally pressed your force quit keys, then just right click and it’ll close out of the force quit mode.


Tags: GNOME 2
Created: 7 years ago.
Last edited: 5 years ago.
Read 11138 times.

Comments
1 year ago

cecilieaux
Works perfectly 6 years later in Mint Cinnamon 17.3  
2 years ago

MagicMint
It’s the easiest way to call xkill in my eyes, hence it’s the most useful too.  
3 years ago

Kafka
very usefull
thx :)
 
3 years ago

jahid_0903014
nice!  
3 years ago

notsobad
I knew about xkill but never thought of using it this way great Idea!!!  
4 years ago

sujitnag
good use the utility.  
5 years ago

robertgaul03
i have lisa but the force quit button doesn`t work. also if i press ALT+F2, not working. why?  
5 years ago

jkotesh
@ThomasB2k Thank you  
5 years ago

ThomasB2k
@jkotesh, right click.  
5 years ago

jkotesh
how to cancel the command once the combination is pressed, as this one is really useful but at times it annoys when entered the combinattion and there is nothing that i can exit,,,which irritates me, so i click on taskbar,, which comes back after restart,,, and doesn't hurt me,,
 
6 years ago

IslandWolf
Useful tool, easy to follow directions. Well done!  
6 years ago

aspir8or
Thanks. I had previously added hotkeys to the "Switch to workplace" options (8 workplaces) but I didn't know about xkill. Nice keyboard alternative to the "Force quit" button you can add to the panel.  
6 years ago

sdim
Great tool. Many thanks.  
6 years ago

Labby
Awesome! Thanks for that.  
6 years ago

blueXrider
Nice, can be handy  
6 years ago

ivy_s
Very good.
Thanks you
 
6 years ago

sayan_acharjee
Good one!!  
6 years ago

noztox
thanks, alternative click right in panel -> click add to panel -> search & click "force quit" -> click add & close  
6 years ago

farmer
A lot better than having to reboot.  
6 years ago

Tonya
Many thanks!  
6 years ago

ianxl
A useful tip. - Thank you! 8~)  
6 years ago

pnash1
very handy  
6 years ago

jerryclement
Thanks, user from Ubuntu.  
7 years ago

itonggant
thanks...  
7 years ago

distrohopper
ctrl + alt + esc should also work in KDE  
7 years ago

hezy
xkill has a default keyboard shortcut in mint xfce: ctrl + alt + esc  
7 years ago

SeventhReign
I've been using gnome-do/Alt-F2 + xkill to do this for forever, but I like this way alot better.  
7 years ago

ddavid123
Back in days when I used Mandrake 9.1, I used this feature. But in the last 4-5 years, it has disappeared! Thanks for the tutorial!  
7 years ago

chamfay
thanks  
7 years ago

TheBigGeeUK
Nice tutorial. Thanks for that!  
7 years ago

ThomasB2k
You cancel it by right clicking, like it says in the last line of the tutorial.  
7 years ago

DragonTrainer
The only problem I see with this is the fact that when you press the combination, you can't cancel the command. You must to click in something to kill it; if you press ESC or the combination again, the system still asks for something to kill.

That doesnt means that this is bad or useless; I've already added it to the shortcuts (in my case with Super+K) in case of emergency.
 
7 years ago

ThomasB2k
Yes, but why even take up space on the panel with a force quit button?
 
7 years ago

hunterm
You don't have to go into the terminal to add a force quit button to the panel. ;) Good tip.  
7 years ago

Joeasaurus
Nice, Thanks.  
7 years ago

ThomasB2k
I'm happy to help :)  
7 years ago

thx1138
Excellent. Thank you.  
7 years ago

choneycutt5000
I've been using Gnome for a couple of years now and it never occurred to me that I could do this. Great tip, thanks.  
7 years ago

Aurimas_St
Because I'm new to linux - this tutorial was helpful. Thank you.  

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