Changing the Backspace Key Behavior in Reflection and Extra!

  • 7021490
  • 06-Jun-2008
  • 23-Oct-2020


Reflection Desktop (including Pro, or for UNIX and OpenVMS) version 16.0 and higher
Reflection 2014
Reflection for UNIX and OpenVMS 2014
Reflection for UNIX and OpenVMS 2011
Reflection for UNIX and OpenVMS version 14.x
Reflection Standard Suite 2011
Extra! X-treme version 9.x


  • You are using a VT emulation session (connecting to a UNIX or OpenVMS host).
  • After connecting to your host application, pressing the Backspace key on your PC keyboard does not produce the desired backspace effect.
  • You want the Backspace key to function as a destructive backspace, or not. A destructive backspace or 'delete' moves the cursor one character to the left and simultaneously erases the character that previously occupied that position. This is equivalent to the behavior of the PC's Backspace key when you are in a Microsoft Windows application, such as Word.


Follow the steps below to toggle the backspace configuration.

In Reflection

  1. Start a VT session using Reflection.
  2. Open the Terminal Setup dialog box:

In Reflection Desktop, Reflection 2014, or Reflection 2011: From the Quick Access toolbar, click the Document Settings button.


In Reflection 14.x: Click Setup > Terminal Setup.

  1. Under Terminal Configuration, click Configure Terminal Settings.
  2. On the Keyboard & Mouse tab, under "VT backspace sends," select the option that is not currently selected (either Delete or Backspace).

For OpenVMS, this option should be set to Delete. For most other hosts, it should be set to Backspace (the default).

  1. Click OK.

In Extra! X-treme

  1. Start a VT session using Extra! X-treme.
  2. Click Options > Settings.
  3. Under Categories, select Display.
  4. On the Keyboard tab, in the Backspace drop-down, select the option that is not currently selected (either Delete or Backspace).
  5. Click OK.


The default mapping for the Backspace key depends upon the product you are running.

Different hosts and applications require different escape sequences to trigger a destructive backspace.

Additional Information

Legacy KB ID

This document was originally published as Attachmate Technical Note 2354.