keyboard stops working KDE

Bug #1263080 reported by SA on 2013-12-20
This bug affects 1 person
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
kdebase (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

Since a few updates over the last two weeks the keyboard on my laptop (macbook air 4.2) stops responding 2-3 times a day on light use. I find no messages looking at the system logs (via dmesg). KDE seems unaware of the problem. The mouse works and the only way I can "fix" the problem is to use the mouse to logout or reboot. I cannot use the keyboard to switch to a console screen. The only button that does anything is the power button.

Previous to the last two weeks it has been fine although I recall a similar problem a year or so ago (I think this was less frequent and one day just was fixed presumably after some update).

I use xmodmap to remap the apple keys to mouse buttons to overcome the lack of a three button mouse and during the same period I've had a few instances recently when this remapping has been "forgotten" and has needed to be reapplied.

I have also noticed that when the keyboard is dead the caps lock key and the keyboard backlight don't work (caps lock key is a good test since it normally lights up).

SA (superaorta) wrote :

Also - not 100% sure but the battery monitor widget appears to die at the same time and it seems to occur more often shortly after the computer wakes up. The "forgetting the xmodmap settings" problem is happening many times a day now and is really irritating although can be fixed without losing data. I can find no errors in any logs.

SA (superaorta) wrote :

I think I have a lead on this problem - it appears to be solved for me (no problems in the last 24hrs) but the "solution" is a little bizarre and points to a deeper problem:

power devil also appeared to have a problem since the updates sometimes being unresponsive and has been reporting this delightfully uninformative error:

 PowerDevil::Action::trigger: Unsatisfied policies, the action has been aborted

Through trial and error by, selecting and deselecting power management options, I tracked this error down to the option:

On AC Power: Display Brightness

- by deselecting this option the .xsession message has vanished and since then the keyboard has been working fine and the xmodmap setup has stuck without being forgotten.

SA (superaorta) wrote :

Another 24 hrs on and no repeat of the keyboard problems through several sleep / wakes etc. I think this is increasingly looking like some cross talk with power devil.

SA (superaorta) wrote :

Ok I've lost the keyboard completely 4 times in the last 24hrs and the xmodmap settings at least once in the same period - I'm losing data because there is no way to interact with the computer other than to logout and log back in - it is extremely annoying. I cannot find anything in the logs or any way to go about debugging the problem - help!

SA (superaorta) wrote :

Ok after a quiet period where this did not occur very often it has started again several times a day - it is more than annoying - since the only way to fix it is to reboot I lose data each time this happens.

What seems to have made it happen again is the use of an external mouse but this may be coincidence. There is notihing in the kern.log or sys.log or xorg.logs that indicates any information.

Any suggestions?

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