gdb.info: Introduction and Notation

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Introduction to Line Editing

The following paragraphs describe the notation used to represent
keystrokes.
   The text `C-k' is read as `Control-K' and describes the character
produced when the <k> key is pressed while the Control key is depressed.
   The text `M-k' is read as `Meta-K' and describes the character
produced when the Meta key (if you have one) is depressed, and the <k>
key is pressed.  The Meta key is labeled <ALT> on many keyboards.  On
keyboards with two keys labeled <ALT> (usually to either side of the
space bar), the <ALT> on the left side is generally set to work as a
Meta key.  The <ALT> key on the right may also be configured to work as
a Meta key or may be configured as some other modifier, such as a
Compose key for typing accented characters.
   If you do not have a Meta or <ALT> key, or another key working as a
Meta key, the identical keystroke can be generated by typing <ESC>
_first_, and then typing <k>.  Either process is known as "metafying"
the <k> key.
   The text `M-C-k' is read as `Meta-Control-k' and describes the
character produced by "metafying" `C-k'.
   In addition, several keys have their own names.  Specifically,
<DEL>, <ESC>, <LFD>, <SPC>, <RET>, and <TAB> all stand for themselves
when seen in this text, or in an init file (*note Readline Init File::).
If your keyboard lacks a <LFD> key, typing <C-j> will produce the
desired character.  The <RET> key may be labeled <Return> or <Enter> on
some keyboards.