Laptop Keyboard/Mouse freeze when wifi turned off

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ajlewis2
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Laptop Keyboard/Mouse freeze when wifi turned off

Post by ajlewis2 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:40 pm

Laptop is Dell Inspiron 11 3180 with Atheros Communications AR9565 Wireless Network Adapter.

I installed Mint 19.1 and upgraded to 19.2 wiping Windows. This is the first time I've had only Linux on a machine and note that there is no grub menu by default in this case. All was well until I took it to a friend's house and tried to boot. I got the login screen and could type maybe 1 character of the password before the keyboard locked. So I waited until I got home and booted fine. I think it has something to do with the wireless and since I have the wifi password in, mine starts. It seems that if the wireless doesn't start the input locks.

I have also found that if I turn off the networking with Network Manager, the input likewise freezes. I have not tried leaving it like that for a while to see if it eventually stops whatever bad behavior is going on and turns loose of the input. I'll do that and report. Meanwhile, anyone have experience or ideas on this? Any logs that might help?

Thanks!

ajlewis2
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Re: Laptop Keyboard/Mouse freeze when wifi turned off

Post by ajlewis2 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:55 pm

I turned off the wifi with Network Manager and then waited around 10 minutes. The keyboard and touchpad became unresponsive. I watched the clock and also the battery charge indicator and these things did not change over that period, so apparently the video was also unresponsive. I had hoped that the system would become operational after a few minutes, but that did not happen. I had a terminal open with tail -f /var/log/syslog writing to a file. Nothing much appears after the Network went down, but I'll attach it.
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ajlewis2
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[SOLVED] Re: Laptop Keyboard/Mouse freeze when wifi turned off

Post by ajlewis2 » Fri Aug 23, 2019 7:36 am

I kept searching and finally landed on something concerning the crash when turning wifi on/off. The suggested fix seems to work for me. I upgraded to kernel 4.18.0-25, rebooted, and then tried turning off the wifi. The laptop remained operational for the few minutes I spent running a few programs.

Now I see the update-manager asking to install kernel 5.0. I've never been one to upgrade a kernel unless it is for security or necessity, so I'm reluctant to upgrade. I guess it won't kill me to upgrade since I have the old kernel available if needed. This is not my main computer, so a little experimentation might be good.

ajlewis2
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Re: Laptop Keyboard/Mouse freeze when wifi turned off

Post by ajlewis2 » Sat Aug 24, 2019 11:13 am

I experimented and upgraded to the 5.0 kernel. It seemed to break the touchpad, but not the keyboard. I found some info on this.
https://askubuntu.com/questions/1033033 ... rk-i2c-hid and thought I would need to revert to the 4.18 kernel. I booted into the 4.18 kernel through the Advanced options in the grub menu and to my great surprise, the touchpad was not working. It had been previously. Puzzlement. I decided not to remove the 5.0 kernel just yet and rebooted to 4.18 and the touchpad worked. Since that fixed it, I did the same with 5.0: boot once, no touchpad; boot again, touchpad works.

I did this a few times back and forth with the same results and decided that something in the short running of the system on the new kernel did something that allows the touchpad to work thereafter. I don't know much about these things, but it seems that something gets changed when the system is run on the different kernel and then when the kernel runs again, that change is in place so that the touchpad is operational.

So, it looks like the kernel upgrade is okay, but be aware that the touchpad may not work on first boot with the new kernel.

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