Dual monitor affects keyboard shortcuts

I am running Opensuse 12.3 (x64) with Gnome 3.6.2 and I have recently acquired an extra monitor. I want to use both monitors at the same time. My graphics card is Radeon HD 6450.

I read somewhere that ATI proprietary drivers give better support for multiple monitors so I’ve installed them [exactly these: http://geeko.ioda.net/mirror/amd-fglrx/raw-src/amd-ati-fglrx64.ymp].

Now, using the ATI tool I can set up the configuration of my screens and everything works fine, when I reboot the machine it remembers all the settings so monitor-wise everything works fine.

However, this seems to have affected some keyboard shortcuts. In particular, the multimedia keys (volume, play/pause), the screenshot button and some of my custom shortcuts stopped working… If I go into Gnome’s keyboard settings editor I can set all these shortcuts again and it registers when I press e.g. the screenshot button. However, when I actually press the screenshot button outside of the editor nothing happens…

What is even weirder is that if I boot the system with just one monitor the shortcuts start working again… And if I plug in the second monitor while the system is already they keep on working… The problem only occurs if I boot the system with two monitors…

Well, I would really appreciate any help…

I suspect that you misunderstood the context of whatever you read, or it was BS … the OSS driver stack works just fine with mulitple monitors, and has excellent support for them via xrandr.

One of the few reasons you might want to install the prop drivers is:

  • for better 3D/OpenGL support
  • for better power management … however, as of kernel 3.11, this issue is moot – as the OSS stack gained DPM for contemporary devices (r600 and up)
  • for hardware acceleration of video … however, as of kernel 3.10, this issue is moot – as the OSS stack gained UVD suport on most contemporary devices

Given your hardware has pisspoor 3D/OpenGL performance capabilities to begin with (<-- I speak from first hand experience, so don’t construe that as a slight, its just factual; meaning its never going to be a desirable card for gaming or CAD work, but it provides enough umph for OpenGL based composited desktop use, so is more then sufficient for ordinary use on a modern desktop environment), there isn’t much use in going with the prop. drivers for that reason. In fact, given that the prop. stack has worse 2D performance then the OSS stack, there is reason to stick with the OSS drivers.

As for the specific error that you’re encountering, I could theorize a couple of things that might be the cause, but (to be frank, I’m not interested in doing so * and) I believe that overall you’d be better served by removing the prop. drivers in this case and utilize the OSS drivers. I suspect that once you do so, the issue will be resolved.

  • If you’re adamant about sticking with the prop drivers, I’m sure someone else will be willing to help you out with that (I just don’t have the time or interest, that’s all)

I tried reverting to the original drivers but the performance is really horrible (much worse than it was before, I really do not have a clue why)… On the other hand the performance with the ATI drivers is good, it’s just these keyboard shortcuts that are missing. Anyone has got any ideas how to solve that?

I’d wager large coin on the reason that you’ve experienced “poor performance”* is that you’re using the generic fbdev driver because, in reverting back from the fglrx drivers, you did not remove nomodeset and/or radeon blacklisting (that is req’d by the fglrx, but most assuredly is NOT if you want to use the OSS).

  • in general, “poor performance” on its own doesn’t really say much, as it doesn’t describe what aspect is poor … are we talking 3D, desktop, video …