xsetwacom – commandline utility to query and modify wacom driver set‐
xsetwacom [options] [command [arguments]]
This program queries or changes properties on the devices loaded by the
wacom driver. The modification of properties happens at runtime and is
not persistent through X server restarts.
-d, –display display_name
Connect to the X server specified in display_name; see X(7).
Prints a short help.
Enable verbose output, useful for debugging.
Display version number and exit.
Allowed commands are list, get, and set. The command may be specified
with or without one or two preceding dashes, i.e. –list is equivalent
to -list and list.
List known devices. Only input devices managed by the wacom
driver are listed.
List known parameters. List all parameters suitable for the get
or the set command. Note that not all parameters are available
on all device types.
List the aliases for modifiers and other keys that can be used
when setting button action mappings.
get device_name parameter
Get the current settings for the parameter on the given device.
Note that not all parameters are available on all device types.
The special parameter name “all” may be provided to display all
current settings on the device.
By default, options are printed on the commandline in the respective
The output format may be altered with one of the following
Display the output in shell format, i.e. as shell commands to
xsetwacom to reproduce the same parameter.
Display the output in xorg.conf format, i.e. as option lines
that may be added to the InputDevice section in the xorg.conf.
set device_name parameter [value] Set the parameter value on the given device to the value pro‐
vided. Note that not all parameters are writable, some are read-
only and result in an error when trying to be modified.
Not all parameters are available on all tools. Use the get command
with the parameter or “all” parameter for specific input tool applica‐
ble parameters and current settings.
Area x1 y1 x2 y2
Set the tablet input area in device coordinates in the form top
left x/y and bottom right x/y. Top left and bottom right are
defined in the device’s native orientation, regardless of the
actual rotation currently applied. Input outside of these coor‐
dinates will be clipped to the edges of the area defined.
Default: 0 0 x2 y2; with x2 and y2 tablet specific.
Button button-number [mapping]
Set a mapping for the specified button-number. Mappings take the
form of either a single numeric button or an ‘action’ to be per‐
formed. If no mapping is provided, the default mapping is
Numeric button mappings indicate what X11 button number the
given button-number should correspond to. For example, a mapping
of “3” means a press of the given button-number will produce a
press of X11 button 3 (i.e. right click).
Action mappings allow button presses to perform many events.
They take the form of a string of keywords and arguments.
The “key” keyword is following by a list of key names. These can
optionally be preceded by “+” for press and “-” for release. If
+/- is not given, press-and-release is assumed, except for modi‐
fier keys which are left pressed. Key names can be X11 KeySyms
or some aliases such as ‘shift’ or ‘f1’ (the full list can be
seen with the list modifiers command).
For example, “key +a +shift b -shift -a” converts the button
into a series of keystrokes, in this example “press a, press
shift, press and release b, release shift, release a”.
The “button” keyword is similar except that its arguments are
X11 button numbers.
The “modetoggle” keyword is also recognized; it takes no argu‐
ments, and toggles the device mode between relative and absolute
The events in the action mapping are sent when the physical but‐
ton is pressed. If the action mapping leaves any buttons or
keys pressed (such as a modifier key), they will be released
when the physical button is released.
Multiple keywords may be present in one action if desired: for
example “key +ctrl button 5 key -ctrl”. Each keyword takes all
arguments until the next keyword.
A maximum of 256 presses and/or releases can be specified in an
The driver can only simulate physical key events but not keysyms
and xsetwacom translates the mapping sequence into such events.
Thus, symbols on the same physical key will generate the same
event. For example, ‘1’ and ‘!’ are on the same key on a US key‐
board and thus have the same keycode). For access to keys on a
higher shift level, the sequence should be entered as it would
be typed on a physical keyboard. For example, a exclamation mark
is entered by the sequence of “key +shift 1 -shift”.
Bind the device to the tool with the specified serial number.
Once bound, the device will ignore events from other tools. A
serial of 0 means the device is unbound and will react to any
tool of the matching type. Default: 0
Map the tablet’s input area to a given output (e.g. “VGA1”).
Output names may either be the name of a head available through
the XRandR extension, or an X11 geometry string of the form
WIDTHxHEIGHT+X+Y. To switch to the next available output, the
“next” keyword is also supported. This will cycle between the
individual monitors connected to the system, and then the entire
desktop. The mapping may be reset to the entire desktop at any
time with the output name “desktop”. Users of the NVIDIA binary
driver should use the output names “HEAD-0” and “HEAD-1” until
the driver supports XRandR 1.2 or later.
The output mapping configuration is a onetime setting and does
not track output reconfigurations; the command needs to be re-
run whenever the output configuration changes. When used with
tablet rotation, the tablet must be rotated before it is mapped
to the new screen. This parameter is write-only and cannot be
Set the device mode as either Relative or Absolute. Relative
means pointer tracking for the device will function like a
mouse, whereas Absolute means the pointer corresponds to the
device’s actual position on the tablet or tablet PC screen.
Default: Absolute for stylus, eraser and tablet PC touch; Rela‐
tive for cursor and tablet touch.
PressureCurve x1 y1 x2 y2
A Bezier curve of third order, composed of two anchor points
(0,0 and 100,100) and two user modifiable control points that
define the curve’s shape. Raise the curve (x1
“firmer” feel. Sigmoid shaped curves are permitted (x1>y1 x2
of 0 to 100 for all four values.
Set the sample window size (a sliding average sampling window)
for incoming input tool raw data points. Default: 4, range of
1 to 20.
Set the tablet to the given rotation:
none: the tablet is not rotated and uses its natural rotation
half: the tablet is rotated by 180 degrees (upside-down)
cw: the tablet is rotated 90 degrees clockwise
ccw: the tablet is rotated 90 degrees counter-clockwise
Rotation is a tablet-wide option: rotation of one tool affects
all other tools associated with the same tablet. When the tablet
is physically rotated, rotate any tool to the corresponding ori‐
entation. Default: none
Set the delta (difference) cutoff level for further processing
of incoming input tool coordinate values. For example a X or Y
coordinate event will be sent only if the change between the
current X or Y coordinate and the previous one is greater than
the Suppress value. The same applies to pressure level (Z coor‐
dinate) and Tilt rotation values. With a current absolute wheel
(AbsWheel) or Tilt value the delta between it and the previous
value must be equal to or greater than the Suppress value in
order to be sent on. Suppress is a tablet wide parameter. A
specified delta level for one input tool is applied to all input
tool coordinates. To disable suppression use a level of 0.
Default: 2, range of 0 to 100.
Set the debug level for this tablet to the given level. This
only affects code paths that are shared between several tools on
the same physical tablet. A higher level means more fine-grained
debug messages, a level of 0 turns debugging off for this tool.
Requires the driver to be built with debugging enabled. See also
ToolDebugLevel. Default: 0, range of 0 to 12.
If on, the stylus must be in contact with the screen for a sty‐
lus side button to work. If off, stylus buttons will work once
the stylus is in proximity of the tablet (regardless of whether
it is touching the screen). Default: on for Tablet PCs; off
for all other models.
Get the serial number of the tool that was last in proximity
last. This serial number is updated whenever the tool goes out
of proximity. If the current tool went out of proximity once,
this serial number is the one of the current tool. This is a
If on, touch events are reported to userland, i.e., system cur‐
sor moves when user touches the tablet. If off, touch events are
ignored. Default: on for devices that support touch; off for all
If on, it means touch switch is turned off. That is, touch
events are reported to userland. If off, touch switch is turned
on, i.e., touch events are ignored. This is a read-only parame‐
ter. Initial touch switch state is retrieved from the kernel
when X driver starts.
sets the max distance from tablet to stop reporting movement for
cursor in relative mode. Default for Intuos series is 10, for
Graphire series (including Volitos) is 42. Only available for
the cursor/puck device.
Set the minimum pressure necessary to generate a Button event
for the stylus tip, eraser, or touch. The pressure levels of
all tablets are normalized to 2048 levels irregardless of the
actual hardware supported levels. This parameter is independent
of the PressureCurve parameter. Default: 27, range of 0 to
Set the debug level for this tool to the given level. This only
affects code paths that are specific to a given tool. A higher
level means more fine-grained debug messages, a level of 0 turns
debugging off for this tool. Requires the driver to be built
with debugging enabled. See also TabletDebugLevel. Default: 0,
range of 0 to 12.
If the initial pressure of a device is != 0 the driver recali‐
brates the pressure range. This is to account for worn out
devices. The downside is that when the user hits the tablet
very hard the initial pressure reading may be unequal to zero
even for a perfectly good pen. If the consecutive pressure read‐
ings are not higher than the initial pressure by a threshold no
button event will be generated. This option allows to disable
the recalibration. Default: on