These little (annoying) problems …

SUN Type 6 Keyboard

SUN Type6 Keyboard

In the company I’m using a SUN Type6 USB keyboard. I’ve tried a couple of keyboards, but this still has the nicest feel of them all. The Linux evdev assigns the symbols Super_R (1 in the right picture), Menu (2 in the picture) and ISO_Level3_Shift (3 in the picture) in order to the three key right of the Space key. For me personally the ISO_Level3_Shift is a little bit far to right and I’m missing a right Control key. With Xorg server 1.5.3 I was able to remap the Super_R key to ISO_Level3_Shift and the right most key to Control_R by using setxkbmap and xmodmap.

$ setxkbmap -symbols "pc+de+inet(evdev)+level3(rwin_switch)"
$ xmodmap remapctrl

The file remapctrl contains the lines:

keycode 108 = Control_R Multi_key
clear control
add control = Control_L Control_R

All good and dandy. Then I switched to Xorg server (on Gentoo Linux).

It still sort of works. When I press the remapped ISO_Level3_Shift and “q” on the keyboard I’m getting the expected “@“. The same should be true for the “~” key. However the “~” is a dead key to produce characters like “ã” with two key strokes. Here, the newly remapped ISO_Level3_Shift has no effect and the same with all other dead keys.

When I remap the Menu key to ISO_Level3_Shift however with

$ setxkbmap -symbols "pc+de+inet(evdev)+level3(menu_switch)"

then all the dead keys like “~” work again as expected. I guess to need to fiddle with /usr/share/X11/xkb/keycodes/evdev to get a final fix.

Missing icon in systray

Systray Icons

Some time in the past I switched from Amarok 1.4 to Mpd with the client Gmpc as my preferred music listening solution. Originally the icon in the Xfce4 systray looked ok as on the right side in the picture to the right (the light blue musical note).

After having installed the icon set Tango and after having switched the icon set a couple of times, I ended up with a systray, which looked like the left side in the picture (some generic icon for the Gmpc).

I then went searching, why in some icon sets the Gmpc systray icon was displayed correctly, while in others it was replaced with some generic icon.

After a bit of digging I found, that the Tango icon set, that I installed doesn’t inherit from the icon set hicolor, which appears to be the mother of all icon sets. Gmpc installs its icons in the hicolor directory structure. As I looked at the file /usr/share/icons/Tango/index.theme it read like this:

[Icon Theme]
Comment=Tango Icon Theme

After I changed “Inherits=gnome,crystalsvg” to “Inherits=hicolor,gnome,crystalsvg” everything looked fine in the systray again.

Wrong framerate on virtual consoles

Again, in the company I inherited a newer flat screen display panel compared to the old one, which had a resolution of 1280×1024. The new one now is capable of 1600×1200 pixels. After reconfiguring /etc/X11/xorg.conf and reboot into the X11 session everything was fine. However, now each time, when I’m shutting down the system or when I switch to one of the virtual Linux consoles, I’m getting an error message from the display, that the vertical and horizontal sync frequencies are out of range. Very annoying.

After some experimentation I have found a workaround. Before shutting down or changing the virtual console, I change the X11 resolution of the X11 server to the 1024×768 size with the key combination CTRL+ALT+Keypad- or CTRL-ALT-Keypad+. I’m wondering, if it has something to do with the fact, that I’m using a Nvidia graphics card. I think a came across similar problem reports in Ubuntu forums, which also mentioned Nvidia cards.

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