How to Enable Tap to Click & Numlock in GDM Login Screen of Ubuntu 20.10

Touchpad tap clicking does not work in the default GDM login screen? I have the same problem in my Ubuntu laptop. And here’s how to fix the issue via a few Linux commands.

Ubuntu uses Gnome as the default desktop environments. And the login screen is handled by Gnome Display Manager, GDM in short. To change the settings of login screen, you have to get the gdm user permission first.

1. First of all, open terminal by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard, or you can search for and launch it from ‘Show Applications’ menu.

2. Then run following commands one by one to get the gdm permission:

  1. Run command to get root permission:
    sudo -i
  2. Add local user gdm to access control list:
    xhost +SI:localuser:gdm
  3. Get the gdm permission in this terminal window:
    su gdm -s /bin/bash

3. Finally run gsettings command to enable tap-to-click function via gdm user privilege:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.peripherals.touchpad tap-to-click true

If the command does not work, try running export DISPLAY=:0 command first.

And if you want Ubuntu enable numlock automatically on login screen, run command:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.peripherals.keyboard numlock-state true

That’s it. Enjoy!

Merilyn Ne
Hi, I'm Merilyn Ne, a computer geek working on Ubuntu Linux for many years and would like to write useful tips for beginners. Forgive me for language mistakes. I'm not a native speaker of English.