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Thread: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

  1. #1
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    I've seen some of the other posts of freezing keyboard, but my
    experience has been slightly different from those. They claimed they
    could only power off, etc. I've found a little more flexibility than
    those, so this may or may not be related.

    I am running a freshly installed 11.1 on hp dv9000 cto (custom).
    Home partition is encrypted, as well as user dir.

    Using the kde 4 setup (so far, haven't tested it under gnome or kde 3x

    The keyboard will randomly stop working in one application window. I
    first noted it in kmail/kontact, when I would try to reply or forward an
    email and attempt to edit that email.
    I would close out kmail, and start over, and it would work again.

    Sometimes. As I used the system more, I started noticing the same
    issue under other applications, Firefox, Scribus, konsole, etc.

    Just a few minutes ago, I had a more complete lockup. I could not use
    any keys at all and couldn't ALT-Tab away as I had before.

    My mouse continues to work throughout all of this.
    I closed (with the mouse) every open window, and still no improvement
    (couldn't get Caps Lock or num lock to light up, etc.).

    I managed to click the "Lock Screen" icon. (I probably could have
    clicked the Log Out option instead of course).

    The password prompt to get back in to that session still had an
    unresponsive keyboard.

    So I clicked on start new session (switch user) from the password
    prompt. Voila, with the same user, but under f8 (the old one still
    running under f7), I have full keyboard again, and am posting this
    message right now.

    My suspicion is something with kde4, but haven't done enough process of
    elimination yet.
    I see various, seemingly unrelated errors in the logs, that have
    occurred even when the keyboard is working fine (claiming tuochpad out
    of sync, etc. I've seen this in suse on this laptop since 10.x, yet
    mouse always works), but I don't see much else in the logs. Maybe
    suggestions on a debug mode to enable to get more about the
    keyboard/desktop lockup specifically?

    I read one suggestion in the forums to remove Beagle (though I am NOT
    using Reiserfs, I am using ext3, but my /home is encrypted).

    Another thing I notice (though may or may not have any relation) is
    that plasma uses a considerable amount of ram (around 400-500 MB), and
    with two sessions, there are two plasma processes running, so that's
    almost 1GB consumed. I'm not familiar with this (new?) Plasma process, I
    will take a little time to read up on it.

    I also have SCIM running (for my Chinese and Russian work).
    After I post this, I am going to try removing Beagle and see if that
    makes any difference (after rebooting). Then I will try to remove SCIM
    and see if that makes any difference.

    If it still acts up, I will try downgrading to KDE3 and see if there is
    any difference there.

    Failing that I will try Gnome (blech) as well.

    I'll post here as I continue the process of elimination, in case
    something I stumble across helps anyone else out with this issue.

    Any other suggestions are of course most welcome.


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  2. #2
    zak89 NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    Can you verify that your keyboard works normally under another OS
    (perhaps the popular one from Redmond?) or a live CD? Actually, what
    might be better is to see if you get the same behavior with an external

    I had similar problems with a laptop touchpad. It would drift off
    uncontrollably. I found out later (fortunately before I had spent hours
    tweaking my xorg.conf) that it was physically damaged, so no tweaking
    the settings would help.

    openSUSE 11.1 x86_64; Kernel 2.6.27-9; KDE 4.2.87; Intel Core 2 Quad
    Q6600 @ 2.4Ghz; 6GB DDR2 RAM; 640GB SATA HDD.
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  3. #3
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    This laptop quadruple boots between OpenSuse 11.1 (was running 11.0 (my
    primary use OS) without this problem, but used KDE3),
    Windows XP SP3
    Windows Vista Ultimate.
    None of those have shown any similar symptoms.
    Also as I noted, If is start a new session while the old (locked up
    keyboard session) is still running. The new session works fine (didn't
    run it long enough to see if it eventually locked up, ran it about 15
    minutes with no lock).
    I now have my laptop docked, and using external keyboard as I write
    this post, so we'll see if that, or the docking station, make any
    Thanks for the suggestion.

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  4. #4
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    Unfortunately using the external keyboard did not diminish the issue.
    Also even with SCIM not running at all the problem still occurs.

    Removing Beagle has not made a difference with this ongoing
    intermittent issue.

    It seems to be the worst with kmail/kontact, but can occur in the
    command shell windows (konsole), firefox, konqueror, scribus, or any
    other window that accepts text. Interestingly, ALT-TAB usually still
    works, even when I can't type otherwise.

    It will be a time-consuming process to downgrade this account (mostly
    moving the email) back down to KDE 3.5 (it had taken a long time to move
    it from KDE 3.5x to 4.x (mostly the email/kontact/kmail piece), to see
    if it's something with the 4.x portion.

    Before I potentially spend (hopefully not waste) that much time rolling
    back, does anyone have any other suggestions, something I can enable in
    the kernel, logging, something somewhere that might generate some
    logging of this issue?


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  5. #5
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    I'm wondering if kmail is the whole cause of this problem. The problem
    seems to ALWAYS occur if kmail is running. Not sure that I have observed
    it occurring when it is not ( I will try to keep better track of that).
    This is very frustrating. If it is kmail,anyone have any suggestions on
    that end?
    Kmail/Kontact Version: 4.1.3-3.11
    KDE4 Version: 4.1.3-4.9

    At this point it is interfering so severely with getting many things
    done, I guess I have no choice but to go through and try tomove all the
    email back to KDE3 and see if that resolves things (this is a PITA since
    there are around 70k emails, many filters,etc. all sorted in many

    I'll try the rollback and report back in a few days if the problem
    stops (or sooner if it recurs).

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  6. #6
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    So of course this process of trying to remove KDE 4 is arduous. It would
    normally be much easier to just run the installation new from the disc,
    except that it appears that Suse ( ? ) so tightly coupled KDE 3 and 4
    libraries that you can't actually install ONLY KDE 3, without it
    including much of 4. I know lots of folks say you can just switch as
    needed, and that they play fine together, but considering the source of
    this problem, that's not been the case. I already tried just adding
    KDE3, and then switching the user desktop to be KDE3 instead of KDE4,
    but the keyboard problem showed up still.
    So, I've (temporarily) installed GNOME.
    Then I've been clicking through dependency hell for a while, trying to
    get rid of every vestige of KDE3 or 4.
    Then after a reboot (assuming I even have a usable system afterwards
    (under GNOME).
    I will then attempt to install only KDE3 components (with all KDE4
    parts set to taboo (while trying to figure out which repositories are
    slipping in KDE4 components).
    We'll see how this goes...

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  7. #7
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    Ok, now KDE3 and 4 are completely gone. I think I'll try fiddling around
    in Gnome for a bit (I'm plenty familiar with it from my testing (and
    reviews) of the Ubuntu (which doesn't fit my needs at all)), to make
    sure the keyboard issues doesn't rear it's ugly head under Gnome (then
    it would mean a more systemic issue), before I try to add just KDE3
    More to come.

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  8. #8
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    Looks like KDE (or something part of KDE) was the culprit, I suspect
    KDE4 over KDE3, but not certain yet.

    Now that all traces of KDE are gone, so far at least (yesterday and
    today), not a single incident. This was happening several times per hour
    before. I am going to incrementally add components to see if I can
    narrow down which KDE-related piece it was.

    First I need to find out how to stop KDE4 from showing up as an option
    to install (keeps trying to force KDE4 components even when all I want
    is KDE3 pieces.

    Then I will install just KMAIL, specifically KDE3 version. Then Kontact
    and it's related pieces. Then a little more at a time.
    If everything works with no KDE4 components, then at least we know it
    is a KDE4 problem, I can use one of my other systems to test that out
    and see if I can submit a specific bug report if that ends up being the

    I'll keep posting updates as this progresses.

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  9. #9
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    Though not a detailed listing of all the hoops and hassles I had to jump
    through, here is an overview of some of the roadblocks I ran into when
    trying to remove KDE4 to rollback to KDE3, and eventually just had to
    completely remove KDE, temporarily running GNOME.

    Additional Notes on roll back from kde4 to kde3x:

    Fought me in trying to roll back, kept insisting that if I uninstalled
    kde4-kdm, that I couldn't install pattern:kde3_basis.

    Told it to go ahead and NOT install kde3_Basis....

    This meant couldn't use patterns to install. Instead did more "manual"
    option of using the "Search" and matching the kde 3 packages to

    This was iterative and incremental.

    kdelibs4 and kdebase4 stubborn about being removed.

    Attempting to remove kdebase4 wanted to force removal of kdebase3 as
    well. There is far too much interlinking going on here. hmm..

    Hmm, kdelibs4 removed ok, but libkde4 is noted as essential for KDE
    period. Maybe not "KDE 4"?

    set all KDE to "Taboo", was only way to stop it trying to add KDE
    pieces back in.

    Ok. will try the following:

    Install Gnome desktop (blech).

    reboot, login with gnome desktop.

    Run Yast package manager, completely uninstall ALL KDE's (3 and 4).


    Logging in again (gnome).

    Disable all repos except original DVD.

    Install JUST KDE 3x.

    Slowly enable repos, watch out for any packages that try to slip KDE4
    back in.

    We'll see how this goes.

    Sidenote: while trying to uninstall KDE4, kept having that annoying
    keyboard issue, that is the main cause of all this hassle. Will watch to
    see if it goes away after all this (hopes so, that's pretty much the
    whole point, that and the fact that KDE4 is still FAR too unreliable,
    crashes, bloated, slow, and buggy. Also I don't like it being closer to
    gnome interface).

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  10. #10
    kmleon NNTP User

    Default Re: Keyboard Freeze Variant. 11.1 KDE4

    Just as an addendum, indeed I found the KDE35 only install option under
    Other >> KDE35 during the initial install desktop selection.

    I was installing it for a friend (ironically who's worked for Microsoft
    for many years), and warned her not to do the install with KDE4.

    As for my update on the keyboard issue under KDE4, I have added
    Kmail/Kontact/Kdepim (3x) back (still running under GNOME for now), and
    no recurrence of the keyboard problem so far.

    Now I am going to switch back fully (though still incrementally on the
    other applications) to KDE 3x. If I do not post on here again, it means
    the problem never came back under KDE3x.

    I will also perform an install on my other laptop with KDE4 and see if
    I can reproduce the problem, and track down the specific application(s),
    to file a bug report.

    If/until then.

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