Xbacklight in manjaro openbox

Hi there! Unfortunately after the last 2 updates xbacklight is not working anymore on my manjaro openbox installation. The hotkeys are not working anymore, also. Is there anyone who can point me to the right direction in solving this issue? Thank you very much and keep the great work up!

Hello, @elia
I use Openbox but I’am not help here. For obtein a help, add a link to openbox after Laptop (below the title of your help demand) with the result of this:
Inxi --full --verbosity=7 --filter


Here is my configuration:

~ >>> inxi --full --verbosity=7 --filter                                        
  Kernel: 5.4.148-1-MANJARO x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: gcc v: 11.1.0 
  Desktop: Xfce info: polybar, tint2 wm: Openbox 3.6.1 vt: 7 
  dm: LightDM 1.30.0 Distro: Manjaro Linux base: Arch Linux 
  Type: Laptop System: SAMSUNG product: 350V5C/351V5C/3540VC/3440VC 
  v: P09ABE.012.CP serial: <filter> Chassis: type: 9 v: 0.1 serial: <filter> 
  Mobo: SAMSUNG model: NP350V5C-S09IT v: BOARD REVISION 00 serial: <filter> 
  UEFI: American Megatrends v: P09ABE date: 07/04/2013 
  ID-1: BAT1 charge: 9.0 Wh (100.0%) condition: 9.0/47.5 Wh (19.0%) 
  volts: 12.5 min: 10.8 model: COMPAL PABAS0241231 type: Li-ion 
  serial: <filter> status: Full cycles: 35 
  RAM: total: 15.53 GiB used: 2.07 GiB (13.3%) 
  RAM Report: permissions: Unable to run dmidecode. Root privileges required. 
  Info: Quad Core model: Intel Core i7-3630QM bits: 64 type: MT MCP 
  arch: Ivy Bridge rev: 9 cache: L2: 6 MiB bogomips: 38333 
  Speed: 1197 MHz min/max: 1200/3400 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 1197 2: 1197 
  3: 1197 4: 1197 5: 1197 6: 1197 7: 1197 8: 1197 
  Flags: acpi aes aperfmperf apic arat arch_perfmon avx bts clflush cmov 
  constant_tsc cpuid cpuid_fault cx16 cx8 de ds_cpl dtes64 dtherm dts epb ept 
  erms est f16c flexpriority flush_l1d fpu fsgsbase fxsr ht ibpb ibrs ida 
  lahf_lm lm mca mce md_clear mmx monitor msr mtrr nonstop_tsc nopl nx pae 
  pat pbe pcid pclmulqdq pdcm pebs pge pln pni popcnt pse pse36 pti pts 
  rdrand rdtscp rep_good sep smep ss ssbd sse sse2 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 stibp 
  syscall tm tm2 tpr_shadow tsc tsc_deadline_timer vme vmx vnmi vpid x2apic 
  xsave xsaveopt xtopology xtpr 
  Device-1: Intel 3rd Gen Core processor Graphics vendor: Samsung Co 
  driver: i915 v: kernel bus-ID: 00:02.0 chip-ID: 8086:0166 class-ID: 0300 
  Device-2: AMD Thames [Radeon HD 7500M/7600M Series] vendor: Samsung Co 
  driver: radeon v: kernel bus-ID: 01:00.0 chip-ID: 1002:6840 class-ID: 0300 
  Device-3: Silicon Motion WebCam SC-13HDL11939N type: USB driver: uvcvideo 
  bus-ID: 1-1.4:5 chip-ID: 2232:1029 class-ID: 0e02 serial: <filter> 
  Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.13 compositor: picom v: git-dac85 driver: 
  loaded: ati,modesetting,radeon alternate: fbdev,vesa 
  resolution: 1640x922~60Hz s-dpi: 96 
  OpenGL: renderer: Mesa DRI Intel HD Graphics 4000 (IVB GT2) 
  v: 4.2 Mesa 21.2.2 compat-v: 3.0 direct render: Yes 
  Device-1: Intel 7 Series/C216 Family High Definition Audio 
  vendor: Samsung Co driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel bus-ID: 00:1b.0 
  chip-ID: 8086:1e20 class-ID: 0403 
  Sound Server-1: ALSA v: k5.4.148-1-MANJARO running: yes 
  Sound Server-2: sndio v: N/A running: no 
  Sound Server-3: JACK v: 1.9.19 running: no 
  Sound Server-4: PulseAudio v: 15.0 running: yes 
  Sound Server-5: PipeWire v: 0.3.37 running: no 
  Device-1: Realtek RTL8111/8168/8411 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet 
  vendor: Samsung Co driver: r8169 v: kernel port: 2000 bus-ID: 02:00.0 
  chip-ID: 10ec:8168 class-ID: 0200 
  IF: enp2s0 state: down mac: <filter> 
  Device-2: Qualcomm Atheros AR9485 Wireless Network Adapter 
  vendor: Samsung Co driver: ath9k v: kernel port: 2000 bus-ID: 03:00.0 
  chip-ID: 168c:0032 class-ID: 0280 
  IF: wlp3s0 state: up mac: <filter> 
  IP v4: <filter> type: dynamic noprefixroute scope: global 
  broadcast: <filter> 
  IP v6: <filter> type: noprefixroute scope: link 
  WAN IP: <filter> 
  Device-1: Qualcomm Atheros AR3012 Bluetooth 4.0 type: USB driver: btusb 
  v: 0.8 bus-ID: 1-1.2:6 chip-ID: 0cf3:3004 class-ID: e001 serial: <filter> 
  Report: rfkill ID: hci0 rfk-id: 1 state: up address: see --recommends 
  Message: No logical block device data found. 
  Message: No RAID data found. 
  Local Storage: total: 447.13 GiB used: 169.78 GiB (38.0%) 
  ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: Intenso model: SSD Sata III size: 447.13 GiB 
  speed: 6.0 Gb/s type: SSD serial: <filter> rev: 8A0 scheme: GPT 
  Optical-1: /dev/sr0 vendor: TSSTcorp model: CDDVDW SN-208DN rev: SC00 
  dev-links: cdrom 
  Features: speed: 24 multisession: yes audio: yes dvd: yes 
  rw: cd-r,cd-rw,dvd-r,dvd-ram state: running 
  ID-1: / size: 213.35 GiB used: 169.78 GiB (79.6%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda6 
  label: N/A uuid: 010f61ff-2d96-43f5-8289-aa0953bf6ec5 
  ID-2: /boot/efi size: 360.3 MiB used: 296 KiB (0.1%) fs: vfat 
  dev: /dev/sda7 label: N/A uuid: B090-5B39 
  ID-1: swap-1 type: partition size: 18.07 GiB used: 0 KiB (0.0%) 
  priority: -2 dev: /dev/sda5 label: N/A 
  uuid: f1116a1e-fbc5-4f97-8e50-085b39f39e24 
  ID-1: /dev/sda1 size: 300 MiB fs: ntfs label: Ripristino 
  uuid: 5692720E9271F2BB 
  ID-2: /dev/sda2 size: 100 MiB fs: vfat label: N/A uuid: 4A72-DAA9 
  ID-3: /dev/sda3 size: 128 MiB fs: <superuser required> label: N/A uuid: N/A 
  ID-4: /dev/sda4 size: 210.42 GiB fs: ntfs label: N/A uuid: EAE4865DE4862BBF 
  Hub-1: 1-0:1 info: Full speed (or root) Hub ports: 2 rev: 2.0 
  speed: 480 Mb/s chip-ID: 1d6b:0002 class-ID: 0900 
  Hub-2: 1-1:2 info: Intel Integrated Rate Matching Hub ports: 6 rev: 2.0 
  speed: 480 Mb/s chip-ID: 8087:0024 class-ID: 0900 
  Device-1: 1-1.1:3 info: Realtek RTS5129 Card Reader Controller 
  type: <vendor specific> driver: rtsx_usb,rtsx_usb_ms,rtsx_usb_sdmmc 
  interfaces: 1 rev: 2.0 speed: 480 Mb/s power: 500mA chip-ID: 0bda:0129 
  class-ID: ff00 serial: <filter> 
  Device-2: 1-1.2:6 info: Qualcomm Atheros AR3012 Bluetooth 4.0 
  type: Bluetooth driver: btusb interfaces: 2 rev: 1.1 speed: 12 Mb/s 
  power: 100mA chip-ID: 0cf3:3004 class-ID: e001 serial: <filter> 
  Device-3: 1-1.4:5 info: Silicon Motion WebCam SC-13HDL11939N type: Video 
  driver: uvcvideo interfaces: 2 rev: 2.0 speed: 480 Mb/s power: 500mA 
  chip-ID: 2232:1029 class-ID: 0e02 serial: <filter> 
  Hub-3: 2-0:1 info: Full speed (or root) Hub ports: 4 rev: 2.0 
  speed: 480 Mb/s chip-ID: 1d6b:0002 class-ID: 0900 
  Device-1: 2-3:2 info: Pixart Imaging Optical Mouse type: Mouse 
  driver: hid-generic,usbhid interfaces: 1 rev: 2.0 speed: 1.5 Mb/s 
  power: 100mA chip-ID: 093a:2510 class-ID: 0301 
  Hub-4: 3-0:1 info: Full speed (or root) Hub ports: 2 rev: 2.0 
  speed: 480 Mb/s chip-ID: 1d6b:0002 class-ID: 0900 
  Hub-5: 3-1:2 info: Intel Integrated Rate Matching Hub ports: 6 rev: 2.0 
  speed: 480 Mb/s chip-ID: 8087:0024 class-ID: 0900 
  Hub-6: 4-0:1 info: Full speed (or root) Hub ports: 4 rev: 3.0 speed: 5 Gb/s 
  chip-ID: 1d6b:0003 class-ID: 0900 
  System Temperatures: cpu: 60.0 C mobo: N/A gpu: radeon temp: 47.5 C 
  Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A 
  Processes: 263 Uptime: 1h 48m wakeups: 1 Init: systemd v: 249 Compilers: 
  gcc: 11.1.0 clang: 12.0.1 Packages: pacman: 1779 Shell: Zsh v: 5.8 
  running-in: termite inxi: 3.3.06

Thank you @Guytoo !!

Glad to see that you understand my english !
Look here: Backlight - ArchWiki and here : [SOLVED]How to enable brightness in Xfce, Openbox and i3 - ArcoLinux -D -B Forum

Maybe to help you

1 Like

The backlight are controlled by XF86MonBrightnessUp and XF86MonBrightnessDown

When you press those keys a program called xbacklight is called with arguments to raise and lower the backlight. You can check the functionality by running the command in terminal.

xbacklight +10


xbacklight -10

If you do not have it you can install a power manager like xfce4-power-manager which provides handlers for setting the backlight.

I haven’t been using my laptop for a while so I haven’t noticed - but I will check.


Hi. It seems that xbacklight from xorg-xbacklight package might not work with your graphics drivers

Quote from Archwiki:


  • xbacklight only works with Intel. Other drivers (e.g. Radeon) did not add support for the RandR backlight property.
  • xbacklight currently does not work with the modesetting driver [3].

You can try xbacklight implementation from acpilight package. It is backward compatible and has some extra features. Maybe that will work.


Thank you all for the kind help!
xfce4-power-manager works well on my system tray, thanks!
I installed acpilight but it look like i should sudo it in order to work. I used to have a command configured in kde-connect to dim my display from my mobile phone. Is there a way to run xbacklight from “acplight” without sudo privileges?
Thank you all for your help!

1 Like

Tested with Intel GPU (630) using modesetting driver and acpilight package

Steps to enable backlight keys using acpilight and XF86MonBrightness{Up|Down} on Openbox based systems.

Install the package acpilight.

Add yourself to the group video

sudo gpasswd -a $USER video

Restart your system - otherwise acpilight may not function as expected.

The following should not be necessary - provided as an alternative

Ensure your user is member of wheel group (the install user on Manjaro is member of the group)

Add the following rule to /etc/sudoers.d to allow xbacklight to be run without password

echo "%wheel ALL=(ALL) NOPASSWD:/usr/bin/xbacklight" | sudo tee -i /etc/sudoers.d/10-xbacklight

Then create an alias in .zshrc (openbox has used zsh for years) so unless you changed it this should do

echo 'alias xbacklight="sudo xbacklight"' >> ~/.zshrc

Log off and login to make sure it work and the alias is loaded. Now you can set backlight using the designated keys as defined in ~/.config/openbox/rc.xml.


Another way to use acpilight without sudo is to add the user to video group. The package has an udev rule so that members of video group can set brightness without sudo.

~ >>> cat /usr/lib/udev/rules.d/90-backlight.rules
# Allow video group to control backlight and leds
SUBSYSTEM=="backlight", ACTION=="add", \
  RUN+="/bin/chgrp video /sys/class/backlight/%k/brightness", \
  RUN+="/bin/chmod g+w /sys/class/backlight/%k/brightness"
SUBSYSTEM=="leds", ACTION=="add", KERNEL=="*::kbd_backlight", \
  RUN+="/bin/chgrp video /sys/class/leds/%k/brightness", \
  RUN+="/bin/chmod g+w /sys/class/leds/%k/brightness"

See also


thank you for that tip - I will check tomorrow.

Thank you! I followed your indications. I then used obkey and added “sudo” in front of the xbacklight Actions. Now it’s working, again many thanks!

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