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maestro52 09-29-2003 11:51 PM

Microsoft Internet Pro Keyboard??
:newbie: Problem!

I am using Mdk 9.1 and I have a MI Pro Keyboard that I prefer over most others. It is just that I do not use Windows at al anymore and while Linux appears to recognize the keyboard it does not allow the extra 22 Internet keys to function.

Does anyone know how if and how I can make all the keys work?

All help is greatly appreciated.

:scratch: :newbie: :scratch:

Thymox 09-30-2003 08:31 AM

There is a program called xbindkeys that allows you to set actions for any key! There is also an accompanying program called (suprisingly) xbindkeys_config that gives it a nice GUI to use. There are alternatives like lineak, and of course you can do it manually using xev and editing a few files by hand...

maestro52 10-01-2003 12:30 AM

:scratch: :newbie: :scratch:
I truly appreciate the suggestions Thymox. I just hope I can find appropriate info regarding using any of those programs or that they are reasonably self explanatory. Although, while I said that my computer is accepting or seeing my keyboard and permitting it to function and for some reason not excluding 22 keys. I probably should have said, it doesn't seem to see the 22 internet and cd player keys. So I am not sure if any of those programs will function.

Of course, I will look intro the programs you mentioned and again appreciate any and all help you or anyone else gives me.


Thymox 10-01-2003 07:36 AM

All keys on a keyboard that actually communicate with the PC (ie not the 'Function' key on laptops) deliver 'Scancodes' to the operating system. It is down to the operating system to interpret these and act accordingly - ie to put the letter J on the screen when you press J. The 'extra' keys are no exception. You can use the xbindkeys program to assign any function to any key, but it is most useful to assign a function to a key that doesn't appear to do anything - like an 'extra' key that doesn't work. My keyboard has 16 'extra' keys that I have assigned to opening my email client, my browser, turning the volume up and down, etc.

maestro52 10-02-2003 02:39 AM

problem with xbindkeys
I am appreciating your info Thymox, but I think I am too much of a :newbie:. I cannot get xbindkeys_config to install on my mdk 9.1. While I had no problem installing tck and tcl along with xbindkeys itself, there are still a few difficulties I am having without the config.

First; I partially understand that I can work directly from xbindkeys and I know that I can get the keycodes and such by using xev, but I am (perhaps being very stupid at this point) unsure of the appropriate way to list the keycodes without at least using the xbindkeys_config and i am really only assuming it would be simpler.

I have even researched the installation instructions and such that are on the web page for xbindkeys and such. I think I am slightly bewildered by the info or the info is just not adequate. For example: Since I cannot use the config program I have repeatedly tried to follow these instructions,
"You can now use xbindkeys by typing :
xbindkeys &"
I did the above, but have no idea of where to go from there. I attempted to check xev for keycodes and such and the xbindkeys & shut down/failed. So I am assuming I have to get all the codes, write them down on paper and then install them after the xbindkeys &. However, do I have to type xbindkeys & before each keycode or can I just list them all and then end or close the list.

Of course, I am told by you that I can also use xev by itself to personallly/manually assign the keys. How do I do that?? XEV only brings up a listing of codes for everything I am doing on my computer, ranging from the keys on the keyboard to moving the mouse and even what the mouse initiates, like files. All of which is great but how do I do anything in xev other than just reading it??

At the same time, there is an option given to directly edit the xbindkeys configuration file,
xbindkeys uses a configuration file to link a command to a key on your keyboard.
Usually this (file) is : $HOME/.xbindkeyrc
You can edit it yourself or you can have a default one created by using :
xbindkeys --defaults > $HOME/.xbindkeysr"

The web page even gies examples of what the .xbindkeysrc should or could look like, but WHERE IS THE FILE?? It does not exist on my computer. I even created the default one as the help info above suggests and I still cannot find such a file. The closest thing I have to $HOME is /home and there is no xbindkeys of any kind at that location or anywhere else that I can see.

Very confusing for me. scratch: :scratch: :scratch: :scratch: :scratch:

Thymox 10-02-2003 07:17 AM

If you cannot install the xbindkeys_config program (I believe it is available from either the Mandrake 'contrib' section or the Penguin Liberation Front (google for it) as an RPM file) then you will need to:
  • Get the scan codes for each 'extra' key
  • Know the program name you want to assign to each key
  • Edit the xbindkey's configuration file (something like ~/.xbindkeysrc) and add the information from the above two bullets
  • Save the file and run xbindkeys&
  • If all works nicely, then add xbindkeys& to your .xinitrc or .xsession file so that it runs when X starts
Did that make sense?

maestro52 10-02-2003 10:03 AM

Thanks again. Of course, the xbindkeys I have is an rpm and I cannot find ~/.xbindkeysrc or .xsession. They literally do not exist in my mdk 9.1. I have xbindkeys and xbindkeys show, but nothing else.

I am thinking about two possibilities that may be causing the problem. One the config file is not up to date with xbindkeys itself. Two, there may be a slight problem due to the age of the program and my mdk also being new. In any case I will see if I can find a xbindkeys_config.rpm.

However, I am under the impression that I can assign the keys directly in xbindkeys itself. So if I am not able to find config rpm's is there any chance you will be able to guide or give me reasonably good directions to do that in xbindkeys?

:scratch: :newbie: :scratch:

Thymox 10-02-2003 06:34 PM


My .xbindkeysrc file is made from the _config program, so it contains lots of comments, but the basic structure of the file is quite easy to follow:

"osdtext ~/.osd-texts/doesnothing"
    m:0x0 + c:234

So, the 1st line is the name you give to the key - I have given this one 'Extra-BrowseLeft' as it is an 'extra' key and it is the left arrow usually associated with webbrowsers. The 2nd line is the actual command you want to run when you press the button - osdtext is a small program that allows you to write text onto the screen 'On Screen Display' style (like when you do the volume on your TV). The 3rd line is the really important one, and I'll cover that in a moment. The 4th line basically shows whether the key has another 'real' name - since these are 'extra' keys they probably won't. I do have an entry for my 'printscrn' key, which is named 'print' in the 4th line.

Now, the 3rd line is the complex one! This determines what key it is! The 'm:0x0' bit means that there are no modifiers, ie you haven't pressed SHIFT or anything. The 'c:234' represents the scancode.

Add an entry for each key you want to use.

Oh, and you can find the (Mandrake) RPM files for xbindkeys here (using the UK mirror...) - it'll either be in the i586 or the contrib dirs.

maestro52 10-02-2003 11:51 PM

Problem at url
Oh, and you can find the (Mandrake) RPM files for xbindkeys here (using the UK mirror...) - it'll either be in the i586 or the contrib dirs.

I went to the ftp you gave me and did not find xbindkeys anywhere in any of the directories. There was a lineak, but it was outdated. Do you know of another location?

Thymox 10-03-2003 05:30 AM

OK... sorry, I just checked out that site fully (I'm at college now and making full use of their fast internet connection :D), and sorry, it isn't there.... (Grant looks sheepish).

The xbindkeys_config program is not part of the xbindkeys program, it is a 3rd party program that makes the configuration part easier. You can find it here:

If you don't get on with that one, then drop a reply here and I'll see if I can find the RPM I used on my system... somewhere... and put it on my site for you to download.

Good luck.

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