LED Controllers

The LED Controllers feature covers:

  • Keyboard LEDs
  • Display backlight
  • Gamepads
  • External/Custom LED controllers

Some of these may require arcan to be set up with higher privileges or capabilities, depending on your OS. This is often the case with laptop backlights. Note that if your laptop backlight control is not working you can simulate the effect somewhat by using a display shader that adjusts the color channel weights, see Display Management.

Backlights are accessed through global/display/list/…/backlight. gamepad LED features via their respective global/input/all devices subpaths. External controllers receive their own path in global/input/all devices with a led- prefix.


Another option is to assign a profile to the led controller and let durden manage its mapping separately. These are handled by profiles loaded from durden/devmaps/led and their format is documented in the README.md file in the same folder.

Each profile describes one device, and assigns the device a role. The different LED controller roles are:

  • passive - no special management of the led device
  • keymap - have LED controllers reflect current menu bindings
  • displaymap - you get access to a custom mapping function that provides periodic access to a low resolution sample of the current display
  • custom - you get access to a clock function where you can trigger your own animations and effects.

External LED controllers

Arcan expose a simple protocol over a FIFO to hook up with custom services for LED hardware. It is described in more detail in the arcan wiki.

The device is refered to as led(fifo) in the global/input/all devices path, and as (fifo) if writing a profile.