XkbDeviceBell - Rings the bell on an X input extension device or the default keyboard


Bool XkbDeviceBell (Display * display , Window window , unsigned int device_spec , unsigned int bell_class , unsigned int bell_id , int percent , Atom name );


  • - display
        connection to the X server
  • - window
        window for which the bell is generated, or None
  • - device_spec
        device ID, or XkbUseCoreKbd
  • - bell_class
        X input extension bell class of the bell to be rung
  • - bell_id
        X input extension bell ID of the bell to be rung
  • - percent
        bell volume, from -100 to 100 inclusive
  • - name
        a name for the bell, or NULL


The core X protocol allows only applications to explicitly sound the system bell with a given duration, pitch, and volume. Xkb extends this capability by allowing clients to attach symbolic names to bells, disable audible bells, and receive an event whenever the keyboard bell is rung. For the purposes of this document, the audiblebell is defined to be the system bell, or the default keyboard bell, as opposed to any other audible sound generated elsewhere in the system. You can ask to receive XkbBellNotify events when any client rings any one of the following:

5 The default bell

5 Any bell on an input device that can be specified by a bell_class and bell_id pair

5 Any bell specified only by an arbitrary name. (This is, from the server's point of view, merely a name, and not connected with any physical sound-generating device. Some client application must generate the sound, or visual feedback, if any, that is associated with the name.) You can also ask to receive XkbBellNotify events when the server rings the default bell or if any client has requested events only (without the bell sounding) for any of the bell types previously listed. You can disable audible bells on a global basis. For example, a client that replaces the keyboard bell with some other audible cue might want to turn off the AudibleBell control to prevent the server from also generating a sound and avoid cacophony. If you disable audible bells and request to receive XkbBellNotify events, you can generate feedback different from the default bell. You can, however, override the AudibleBell control by calling one of the functions that force the ringing of a bell in spite of the setting of the AudibleBell control - XkbForceDeviceBellor XkbForceBell.In this case the server does not generate a bell event. Just as some keyboards can produce keyclicks to indicate when a key is pressed or repeating, Xkb can provide feedback for the controls by using special beep codes. The AccessXFeedback control is used to configure the specific types of operations that generate feedback. Bell Names You can associate a name to an act of ringing a bell by converting the name to an Atom and then using this name when you call the functions listed in this chapter. If an event is generated as a result, the name is then passed to all other clients interested in receiving XkbBellNotify events. Note that these are arbitrary names and that there is no binding to any sounds. Any sounds or other effects (such as visual bells on the screen) must be generated by a client application upon receipt of the bell event containing the name. There is no default name for the default keyboard bell. The server does generate some predefined bells for the AccessX controls. These named bells are shown in the Table 1 ; the name is included in any bell event sent to clients that have requested to receive XkbBellNotify events.

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Table 1 Predefined Bells
Action Named Bell
Indicator turned on AX_IndicatorOn
Indicator turned off AX_IndicatorOff
More than one indicator changed state AX_IndicatorChange
Control turned on AX_FeatureOn
Control turned off AX_FeatureOff
More than one control changed state AX_FeatureChange
SlowKeys and BounceKeys about to be turned on or off
T} AX_SlowKeysWarning
SlowKeys key pressed AX_SlowKeyPress
SlowKeys key accepted AX_SlowKeyAccept
SlowKeys key rejected AX_SlowKeyReject
Accepted SlowKeys key released AX_SlowKeyRelease
BounceKeys key rejected AX_BounceKeyReject
StickyKeys key latched AX_StickyLatch
StickyKeys key locked AX_StickyLock
StickyKeys key unlocked AX_StickyUnlock

Audible Bells Using Xkb you can generate bell events that do not necessarily ring the system bell. This is useful if you need to use an audio server instead of the system beep. For example, when an audio client starts, it could disable the audible bell (the system bell) and then listen for XkbBellNotify events. When it receives a XkbBellNotify event, the audio client could then send a request to an audio server to play a sound. You can control the audible bells feature by passing the XkbAudibleBellMask to XkbChangeEnabledControls.If you set XkbAudibleBellMask on, the server rings the system bell when a bell event occurs. This is the default. If you set XkbAudibleBellMask off and a bell event occurs, the server does not ring the system bell unless you call XkbForceDeviceBellor XkbForceBell. Audible bells are also part of the per-client auto-reset controls. Bell Functions Use the functions described in this section to ring bells and to generate bell events. The input extension has two types of feedbacks that can generate bells - bell feedback and keyboard feedback. Some of the functions in this section have bell_classand bell_idparameters; set them as follows: Set bell_classto BellFeedbackClass or KbdFeedbackClass. A device can have more than one feedback of each type; set bell_idto the particular bell feedback of bell_classtype. The Table 2 shows the conditions that cause a bell to sound or an XkbBellNotifyEvent to be generated when a bell function is called.

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Table 2 Bell Sounding and Bell Event Generating
Function called AudibleBell Server sounds a bell Server sends an
XkbDeviceBell On Yes Yes
XkbDeviceBell Off No Yes
XkbBell On Yes Yes
XkbBell Off No Yes
XkbDeviceBellEvent On or Off No Yes
XkbBellEvent On or Off No Yes
XkbDeviceForceBell On or Off Yes No
XkbForceBell On or Off Yes No

Set percentto be the volume relative to the base volume for the keyboard as described for .I XBell. Note that bell_classand bell_idindicate the bell to physically ring. nameis simply an arbitrary moniker for the client application's use. To determine the current feedback settings of an extension input device, use XGetFeedbackControl.See the X input extension documentation for more information on XGetFeedbackControland related data structures. If a compatible keyboard extension is not present in the X server, XkbDeviceBellimmediately returns False. Otherwise, XkbDeviceBellrings the bell as specified for the display and keyboard device and returns True. If you have disabled the audible bell, the server does not ring the system bell, although it does generate a XkbBellNotifyevent. You can call XkbDeviceBellwithout first initializing the keyboard extension.


Xkb generates XkbBellNotify events for all bells except for those resulting from calls to XkbForceDeviceBelland XkbForceBell.To receive XkbBellNotify events under all possible conditions, pass XkbBellNotifyMask in both the bits_to_changeand values_for_bitsparameters to XkbSelectEvents. The XkbBellNotify event has no event details. It is either selected or it is not. However, you can call XkbSelectEventDetailsusing XkbBellNotify as the event_typeand specifying XkbAllBellNotifyMask in bits_to_changeand values_for_bits.This has the same effect as a call to XkbSelectEvents. The structure for the XkbBellNotify event type contains:

   typedef struct _XkbBellNotify {
       int            type;        /(** Xkb extension base event code */
       unsigned long  serial;      /(** X server serial number for event */
       Bool           send_event;  /(** True => synthetically generated */
       Display *      display;     /(** server connection where event generated */
       Time           time;        /(** server time when event generated */
       int            xkb_type;    /(** XkbBellNotify */
       unsigned int   device;      /(** Xkb device ID, will not be XkbUseCoreKbd */
       int            percent;     /(** requested volume as % of max */
       int            pitch;       /(** requested pitch in Hz */
       int            duration;    /(** requested duration in microseconds */
       unsigned int   bell_class;  /(** X input extension feedback class */
       unsigned int   bell_id;     /(** X input extension feedback ID */
       Atom           name;        /(** "name" of requested bell */
       Window         window;      /(** window associated with event */
       Bool           event_only;  /(** False -> the server did not produce a beep */
   } XkbBellNotifyEvent;

If your application needs to generate visual bell feedback on the screen when it receives a bell event, use the window ID in the XkbBellNotifyEvent, if present.


R XBell (3),

R XkbBellNotify (3),

R XkbChangeEnabledControls (3),

R XkbDeviceBell (3),

R XkbForceBell (3),

R XkbForceDeviceBell (3),

R XGetFeedbackControl (3),

R XkbSelectEvents (3)