SCIM defaults prevent Alt Gr key from working in Netbeans

Bug #212364 reported by iGEL on 2008-04-05
This bug affects 6 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
scim (Ubuntu)
Rolf Leggewie

Bug Description

Binary package hint: netbeans

In Netbeans, the Alt Gr (present on many european keyboards) doesn't work. If you want to type [ (Alt Gr + 8 on the German keyboard), just an 8 appears. This can be solved by setting an environment variable:


Ubuntu version: 8.04
Netbeans version: 6.0.1 (Build 080320)
Ubuntu package version: 6.0.1-0ubuntu2
JDK version: 1.6.0_05

Xavi Ivars (xavi-ivars) wrote :

This does not work when using Netbeans 6.1. It does not start.

Carlos Hoyos (karlos1982) wrote :

I can testify this bug exists. The Alt Gr key appears as "Undefined" when testing new shortcuts on Editor Preferences. Also, because the only way to write brackets ({} []) in a spanish keyboard is by using a Alt Gr key combination, Netbeans becomes almost totally useless (you can still copy+paste from other applications).

Carlos Hoyos (karlos1982) wrote :

It seems I got the culcript. It's the SCIM input editor.

People at aMSN forums have found a quick fix to the problem. Instructions can be found here:

Basically, SCIM doesn't work on java and Tcl/Tk applications if you don't define certain global variables before launching the daemon.

Problem fixed for me. Hope it works for others.

minet (roux-minet) wrote :

It does not work with me.
Because I'm not suer of what I did, could you explicitly give me exactly what you did?
Thanks in advance


rpuchadm (rpuchadm-gmail) wrote :

running netbeans with java-6-openjdk happens exactly the same


samstre (samuel-streiner) wrote :

just start netbeans with XMODIFIERS=''
then it'll work

here's a little script to start it =)

#change /home/samste/netbeans-6.5.rc2 to your netbeans directory
cd /home/samstre/netbeans-6.5rc2/bin/
XMODIFIERS='' ./netbeans

Daniel T Chen (crimsun) on 2008-12-08
Changed in netbeans:
importance: Undecided → Low
newur (newur) wrote :

I can confirm this bug, too. The solutions Carols posted works fine for me, but I still hope somebody fix it.

pandabeer (jonathanpoedts) wrote :

samstre wrote on 2008-11-06: (permalink)

just start netbeans with XMODIFIERS=''
then it'll work

here's a little script to start it =)

#change /home/samste/netbeans-6.5.rc2 to your netbeans directory
cd /home/samstre/netbeans-6.5rc2/bin/
XMODIFIERS='' ./netbeans

I can confirm that this works, but how can i change this so i can start netbeans from the menu?

I get errors when i just put that command in the menu

thanks a lot


I'm on Fedora 10 (soon 11).
I had the same problem and used the same hack to make it work.

If you don't want to use a shell to start netbeans, you can put
export XMODIFIERS=''

 in your /etc/profile.
That's not really clean since it may be unwanted for some other programs such as pidgin. However, if you don't need them or netbeans'priority is greater, that's ok. ;-)

Rolf Leggewie (r0lf) wrote :

I'd assume this was a conscious choice by the Ubuntu devs. It's a direct effect of debian/patches/20_scim_config.dpatch which makes AltGr a trigger key.

Rolf Leggewie (r0lf) on 2009-07-26
Changed in scim (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
Paxdfgb (ne234234) wrote :

Same problem Ubuntu 9.04 and Netbeans 6.7.1

Jean-Marc Leroy (jmleroy) wrote :

Same problem Ubuntu 9.10 and Netbeans 6.8

Same problem Ubuntu 10.04 and Netbeans 6.8

dblv (eric-dblv) wrote :

Same problem Ubuntu 10.04 and Netbeans 6.9 !

+1 Ubuntu 10.04 / NB 6.8

XMODIFIERS='' works, but come one tried to fix this in two years?

Any why is this low priority? It makes an incredible IDE completely unusable, and that's low priority? Not a very nice way to welcome new developers.. :-/

Same problem Ubuntu 10.10 and Netbeans 6.9
Same problem Ubuntu 10.04 and Netbeans 6.8

Please fix it!


Paul Wulff (paul-wulff) wrote :

I have just a stupid question. ;D
The workaround works for me but is it possible to modify the launcher to do this trick ?

I have try to type :

XMODIFIERS='' /usr/bin/netbeans

in the command box but I got the error :

There was an error launching the application.
Details: Failed to execute child process "XMODIFIERS=" (No such file or directory)

I use Ubuntu 10.04 LTS and NetBeans 6.8.

Paul Wulff (paul-wulff) wrote :

I think the issue is not coming from scim.
On my computer scim is not installed

#dpkg -s scim
Package `scim' is not installed and no info is available.
Use dpkg --info (= dpkg-deb --info) to examine archive files,
and dpkg --contents (= dpkg-deb --contents) to list their contents.

Xavi Ivars (xavi-ivars) wrote :

The XMODIFIERS workaround does not work in Ubuntu 12.10. Does anyone know any other workaround?

Xavi Ivars (xavi-ivars) wrote :

Also, I don't have scim installed.

Rolf Leggewie (r0lf) wrote :

works fine for me with scim 1.4.14-6

Anybody still affected?

Changed in scim (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → Rolf Leggewie (r0lf)
status: Confirmed → Incomplete
Rolf Leggewie (r0lf) wrote :

I am unable to reproduce this. Please speak up if you can and I will reopen. Feel free to reopen yourself, too, of course.

Changed in scim (Ubuntu):
status: Incomplete → Invalid
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