orca - a screen reader / magnifier


orca [option...]


orca is a screen reader for people with visual impairments, and provides alternative access to the desktop by making use of speech synthesis, braille, and magnification support on the platform.

In addition, orca only provides access to applications/toolkits that support the assistive technology service provide interface (AT-SPI), which include GTK, Mozilla, Firefox, Evolution, OpenOffice, StarOffice, Java/Swing, etc.

WARNING: suspending orca, e.g. by pressing Control-Z, from an AT-SPI enabled shell (such as gnome-terminal), can also suspend the desktop until Orca is killed.


-s, --gui-setup, --setup
 When starting orca, bring up the GUI configuration dialog.
-t, --text-setup
 When starting orca, initiate the text-based configuration.
-n, --no-setup
 When starting orca, force the application to be started without configuration, even though it might have needed it. This is useful when starting orca via something like gdm.
-u dirname
 When starting orca, use dirname as an alternate directory for the user preferences.
-e speech|braille|braille-monitor|magnifier|main-window
 When starting orca, force the enabling of the supplied options.
-d speech|braille|braille-monitor|magnifier|main-window
 When starting orca, force the disabling of the supplied options.
-?, -h, --help Show the help message of this release of the orca program.
-l, --list-apps
 Prints the names of all the currently running applications. This is used primarily for debugging purposes to see if orca can talk to the accessibility infrastructure. Note that if orca is already running, this will not kill the other orca process. It will just list the currently running applications, and you will see orca listed twice: once for the existing orca and once for this instance.
--debug Enables debug output for orca and sends all debug output to a file with a name of the form ’debug-YYYY-MM-DD-HH:MM:SS.out’ in the current directory. The YYYY-MM-DD-HH:MM:SS portion will be replaced with the current date and time.
 Enables debug output for orca and sends all debug output to the given filename.
-v, --version
 Return the orca version number.
-q, --quit
 Quit orca.


orca development is a community effort led by the Sun Microsystems Inc. Accessibility Program Office.


The orca wiki at <>

The orca mailing list

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