I guess, the best way to start a blog is to give some practical advice. And since I have just finished configuring my spanking new Logitech Wireless keyboard in linux, other people could find it helpful.
In short, the keyboard works in Linux right away (well, it’s a damn keyboard, not a cold fusion reactor). The problem is, all these new keyboards sport a number of nice shortcut keys to do everyday things, like e-mail, web browsing, and media player control. While these keys are fairly trivial to configure in Windows, most Linux distributions don’t like them right away.
The configuration process in Linux comprises two major stages:
- Making the funky keys map to meaningful ‘keysyms’ (virtual symbols, X Window System uses for all keyboard handling). To do this, I tweaked my /etc/X11/XF86Config to change the keyboard model (a number of “extended” a.k.a. “internet-enabled” keyboards are already defined in /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xkb/symbols/inet). My modifications look like this:
Option "XkbLayout" "inet" Option "XkbVariant" "logiinetnav"
- Now is the tricky part – making your window environment do things in response to those keysyms. This is highly specific on what your poison is. I’m a long-time KDE user, but it took me quite some googling in order to figure out how to configure this in KDE. Yes, it would’ve been to easy, if it was configured from the “keyboard shortcuts” section 🙂 . What one has to do is to create new items in menu editor (kmenuedit) and assign shortcuts to each new item. Thankfully, xmms and aumix are scriptable which allows us controlling them via shortcuts (run xmms –help and aumix -h to find the appropriate options).
And so, the Internet keys now work. That’s a good thing ™. The not-so-good thing is that my eyes are killing me today. This is weird – I spend less time in front of the computer and yet they ache more. I guess, eyedrops are no longer an option…
Finally, the link of the day: Yngwie Malmsteen: “You’ve released the f—ing fury!” (generously pointed out by F—ed Company).