How to configure the config file for libinput config I want the apple gestures to work on elementary. I am able to change workspaces by swipe up and down. but that is just about it. For those of you who do not know about this, please see


and this link here


There are some gnome commands..

Here is the file below:

# Configuration file for libinput-gestures.
# The default configuration file exists at /etc/libinput-gestures.conf
# but a user can create a personal custom configuration file at
# ~/.config/libinput-gestures.conf.
# Lines starting with '#' and blank lines are ignored. Currently
# "gesture" and "device" configuration keywords are supported as
# described below. The keyword can optionally be appended with a ":" (to
# maintain compatibility with original format configuration files).
# Each gesture line has 3 [or 4] arguments:
# action motion [finger_count] command
# where action and motion is either:
#     swipe up
#     swipe down
#     swipe left
#     swipe right
#     pinch in
#     pinch out
# command is the remainder of the line and is any valid shell command +
# arguments.
# finger_count is a single numeric digit and is optional (and is
# typically 3 or 4). If specified then the command is executed when
# exactly that number of fingers is used in the gesture. If not
# specified then the command is executed when that gesture is executed
# with any number of fingers. Gesture lines specified with finger_count
# have priority over the same gesture specified without any
# finger_count.
# Typically command will be xdotool, or wmctrl. See "man xdotool" for
# the many things you can action with that tool. Note that unfortunately
# xdotool does not work with native Wayland clients.
# Note the default is an "internal" command that uses wmctrl to switch
# workspaces and, unlike xdotool, works on both Xorg and Wayland (via
# XWayland). It also can be configured for vertical and horizontal
# switching over tabular workspaces, as per the example below. You can
# also add "-w" to the internal command to allow wrapping workspaces.

# Move to next workspace (works for GNOME/KDE/etc on Wayland and Xorg)
gesture swipe up    _internal ws_up
#gesture swipe up   xdotool key super+Page_Down

# Move to prev workspace (works for GNOME/KDE/etc on Wayland and Xorg)
gesture swipe down  _internal ws_down
#gesture swipe down xdotool key super+Page_Up

# Browser go forward (works only for Xorg, and Xwayland clients)
gesture swipe left  xdotool key alt+Right

# Browser go back (works only for Xorg, and Xwayland clients)
gesture swipe right xdotool key alt+Left

# Example of 8 static workspaces, e.g. using KDE virtual-desktops,
# arranged in 2 rows of 4 across using swipe up/down/left/right to
# navigate in fixed planes. Must match how you have configured your
# virtual desktops.
#gesture swipe up   _internal --col=2 ws_up
#gesture swipe down _internal --col=2 ws_down
#gesture swipe left _internal --row=4 ws_up
#gesture swipe right    _internal --row=4 ws_down

# GNOME SHELL open/close overview (works for GNOME on Wayland and Xorg)
gesture pinch in dbus-send --session --type=method_call --dest=org.gnome.Shell /org/gnome/Shell org.gnome.Shell.Eval string:'Main.overview.toggle();'

gesture pinch out dbus-send --session --type=method_call --dest=org.gnome.Shell /org/gnome/Shell org.gnome.Shell.Eval string:'Main.overview.toggle();'

# This application normally determines your touchpad device
# automatically. Some users may have multiple touchpads but by default
# we use only the first one found. However, you can choose to specify
# the explicit device name to use. Run libinput-list-devices to work out
# the name of your device (from the "Device:" field). Then add a device
# line specifying that name, e.g:
#device DLL0665:01 06CB:76AD Touchpad
# Or you can choose to use ALL touchpad devices by setting the device
# name to "all". This reduces performance slightly so only set this if
# you need to.
#device all
  • Do you think there is any way to get also the pinch to zoom gestures to work with Browsers?
    – Nils
    Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 11:56
  • I could only get workspace switching. That wast the whole point of posting this question. I also want gestures that are useful Commented Mar 23, 2017 at 23:13

1 Answer 1


I managed to make it work with:

git clone http://github.com/bulletmark/libinput-gestures
cd libinput-gestures
sudo make install
sudo apt install libinput-tools xdotool
sudo gpasswd -a $USER input
libinput-gestures-setup autostart

And create the file '~/.config/libinput-gestures.conf' with the next contents:

gesture swipe up xdotool key super+Left    
gesture swipe down xdotool key super+Right

Then log out and log in again.

So you will change desktop with 3 fingers 'up' and 'down' swipe.

It also works with 'swipe left' and 'swipe right' but it is very clumsy on my macbook so I prefer the 'up/down' movement.

It is not as fast and comfortable as OSX, but something similar.

  • 1
    Thanks.. I was also able to get it to work. Up and down changes desktops right out of the box without any mods. The question was how to get more gestures. Commented Feb 12, 2017 at 2:04

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