Reverting Right Ctrl/shift To Standard Behaviour

Apologies if this has been discussed to death but I can’t seem to find any recent discussions about this.

I know mapping right ctrl/shift etc to various play functions is the traditional tracker way, but having been away from trackers for over 10 years, I find myself trying to invoke Ctrl-shortcuts with my right hand over and over and ending up swearing at Renoise.

Is it really not possible to reconfigure these keys so that they work the same as the left ctrl/shift keys? It seems that not too long ago, you standardised the behaviour of shift-arrow to mean selection, why not this one as well? Seeing as Renoise key bindings are so eminently configurable, I am quite surprised to see this one left out.

All keys except the left modify-keys are reconfigurable. The only involvement of the left modify-keys is when it regards a combination with any other key.
The reason why it is not implemented is because:

  • Default tracker behavior as you know for yourself → most trackers have this behavior
  • This option would only benefit one or two users.

You can reassign the play controls to other keys if you like (some trackers also used F5, F6 and F7 for pattern/song and play from position). Go to the Preferences ->Keys ->Select “Global” list and then “Transport” and reassign the play/record pattern/song keys and then your right modify keys will operate as normal.

Yep, rctrl etc are configurable to any other one-key action, I can e.g. remove the play action from rctrl and have it do nothing, but there is no way to say “make rctrl work the way lctrl does”, which is what anyone not coming from the tracker world would expect.

Is it really only me (and possibly one other user) whose hands are so accustomed to using the right ctrl key for certain common key combos like ctrl-c, ctrl-z etc, that my muscle memory keep on using them over and over also in Renoise? ;)

It would be amazing if it worked, but it doesn’t seem to. Reassigning Play Song away from rctrl just leaves that key dead. Ctrl-z for example does nothing when invoked via the right ctrl key.

There have not been many requests for this, you might find one in the history of this board a few years back, but then you should use the advanced search mode and select “Any date and older” radio button.
You can get quite far to transfer the functionality of the Left modifier keys to the right modifier keys, but this requires some additional steps i forgot to add (sorry):

Yes, apologies for that. I overlooked something, this is how i made that mistake:
I did a quick right shift test (to see if quick caps/no caps works) which seem to work alright, however this is system controlled so Renoise does not intervene here, yet only checks if the keycombo is assigned or not.
There are not really a lot of Right-shift + [key] combo’s on the character field (unless you made a few of your own) so Renoise does nothing except receiving character input send from the system. This behavior is ofcourse expected, but all other left shift+ keycombinations defined in Renoise do not work the same way, simply because the code that the left shift generates is different from the code that the right shift generates and the total sum of both keycombo’s is therefore unfortunately different

What is more confusing is that the right modifier keys are all defined logically (rctrl, rshift, ralt) but the left modifier keys are not (are just called shift, ctrl and alt).
So the undo keyboard shortcut in the Preferences says “ctrl+z” but in fact it you should read “lctrl+z”.

So not only do you have to deassign the right side modifier keys, you have to reassign a whole lot of internal keycombinations with those keys as well.

If you want to have this done fast then i would let a rich text-editor like PSPad script this task for you in the KeyBindings.xml and let it replace all ctrl for rctrl, all shift for rshift etc. Perhaps afterwards replace all rrctrl back to rctrl etc (this should not be much besides transport assignments if there still are).

Thanks for clarifying!

After a bit of tinkering around, it seems like I would have to reassign all Control-[code] to RControl-[code], although I would like to have both.

I tried adding a KeyBinding “2nd Undo” and setting that to “RControl + Z”, but that (somewhat expectedly) didn’t work. Because you can’t add multiple shortcuts to one command, can you?

It does look like maybe I’ll just have to force myself to get used to using only left ctrl…

No unfortunately not, but on the other hands, the modifier key splitting allows you as a user to define a lot of personal shortcut keys as well. The amount of requests for more keyboard shortcuts has always been very high in that regard.

Hi guys.

Although I’m pretty much a Noob here (this is my first post on this forum after all) I’d like to add my 2 cents.

First I’m (at least) the second guy then who would like to have a “normally” behaving left ctrl and shift key. ;)

I’m on the whole a bit disappointed with the configurability of the keyboard shortcuts, especially as this was one of the advertised features that initially attracted me to renoise. I really like programs that I can control with the keyboard only, but I don’t really want to learn entirely different keybindings for every one of them. I therefore usually try to adjust the keybindings (at least somewhat) to what I’m used to, which is where my problems started:

  1. Right shift/ctrl don’t work as modifiers. Adding RControl manually as a modifier in the .xml (which is what was suggested above, if I understood that correctly) lead to renoise crashing. (…and even if it would work, I would by far prefer left and right modifiers to behave the same, as this is much more natural for 10-Finger typing). I therefore do not quite see how this should enable more keyboard shortcuts.

  2. The selection shortcuts are basically hardwired. If I assign the movement command in the pattern editor to anything but the arrow keys (and pg-up/pg-down), shift + movement for selection does not work anymore. This makes the possibility to reassign the movement keys to anything else rather useless.

  3. Shift as a modifier does not really work for note keys (keys for playing your instruments). It does work well when you’re not in record mode. But when you are in record mode, shift + “note key” just plays the note…

Phew… this got a little longer than planned, but at least I vented some frustration.

Is there maybe any way around this limitations that I missed or did I do something wrong?

Was there ever a solution to this? I’ve found that starting to really get into renoise this is a constant gotcha. I don’t like to interrupt my flow by using the mouse, so I’ve got used to using varied keyboard shortcuts in many programs, but I’ve never had to treat left and right shift keys differently. As a programmer using Visual Studio all day, RCtrl+Home, for example, is a particularly difficult one to unlearn.

Well, the initial poster is now part of the Renoise Dev-team, so if he still desires a solution, he can change this now himself.
But i don’t know if he still has the secret desire to do himself and others this favor.

Ah, so there’s a ray of hope yet. :)

@sharevari: If you do decide this is worth tackling I have a suggestion (but I appreciate it’s often far easier to suggest something than to implement it). If RShift or RCtrl are not assigned to anything, could they then effectively be alternative LShift and LCtrl keys? This is perhaps what you were expecting from your second post. That way, existing keyboard configurations are not affected, and there’s no special check-boxes cluttering up the preferences.

Hehe, I do still have this secret desire, but I’m not sure how popular it would be with the rest of the Renoise userbase. :)

Worth revisiting though. Will investigate.

You would unlock another large potential amount of new shortcuts by setting the right modifiers completely free.
but that would also be confusing as hell.

Hi, Yeah I’m interested with this. I’m trying to learn Renoise and this is kind of annoying especially as I use my mouse with the left hand(but I am right handed, but I like to use left handed, go figure). Its making it kind of difficult/confusing/awkward to use.

Surely it would be no disadvantage to making it configurable at least?

If you do gonna do something about this, how about making all keys configurable?
I want to change one of the octaves of note-playing-keys into normal shortcut keys as well…

Have investigated this a little now, and unfortunately it’s not an easy thing to change in the current architecture. So we decided to leave it as it is for now at least.

Drat. It’s a shame since I think it’s one of those things that can contribute to alienating new users. Oh well, I’ve unassigned them now so they’re dead keys. Cheers for taking a look anyway. :)

Plugging over modifier keys requires changing scan-codes that each key supplies.
That is simply a lot of work to do.