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Old 06-06-2006, 10:29 AM   #1
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Registered: Dec 2004
Location: Canada
Distribution: Ubuntu Linux
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Question Two different keys report the same kernel scancode


I had posted this on a thread titled "Two kernel scancodes have the same kernel keycode", but that is a completely incorrect title. So here it is under the right title.

I am having problems getting my multimedia keyboard working, and yes, I know there are plenty of threads discussing this topic, but I can't find any threads that discuss this problem. So just hear me out:

I've gotten most of my multimedia keys working, mainly using the instructions at

However, I am still having some problems: certain keys, which are meant to have different functions, are reporting the same kernel scancode. For example, the "Finance" key is returning the same scancode as the right "Windows" key (Super_R). Here's the output of the command "showkey -s", with some comments (on lines beginning with '#'):
# Output when "Finance" key is pressed/released:
0xe0 0x5c 0xe0 0xdc 
# Output when the right "Windows" key (Super_R) is pressed/released:
0xe0 0x5c 0xe0 0xdc
(The key-press scancode is "0xe0 0x5c" and the key-release scancode is "0xe0 0xdc")

I tried this exact same keyboard on the exact same computer under MS Windows. The two keys are detected as different keys under MS Windows, so it can't be a hardware malfunction -- there must be some distinguishable property being sent by the keyboard controller (am I right?).

There is only one difference that I was able to notice. When I press and hold the "Finance" before releasing it, the output of "showkey -s" is the same as above: "0xe0 0x5c 0xe0 0xdc" (the key-press code is not repeated). However, when I press and hold the right "Windows" key (Super_R) before releasing it, the output of "showkey -s" is "0xe0 0x5c 0xe0 0x5c 0xe0 0x5c 0xe0 0x5c ... 0xe0 0xdc" (the key-press scancode is repeated multiple times).

Another thing that may be of importance is that the command "kbd_mode" reports that my keyboard is in ASCII (XLATE) mode, not in UTF-8 (UNICODE) mode. Could this be causing problems? My keyboard is a Multimedia keyboard, but the standard keys have a standard US keyboard layout.

Computer Information
Distribution: Ubuntu Linux 6.06 "Dapper Drake"
Kernel Version: 2.6.15 and 2.6.12
Keyboard: HP Multimedia Keyboard
If more information is needed, please ask.

I would appreciate any help that I can get. Thanks.


keyboard, keycode, multimedia, scancode

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