Keyboard stopped working [SOLVED]

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canhoto
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Keyboard stopped working [SOLVED]

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 11:13 am

Hi.
My laptop keyboard stopped communicating with Linux Mint. I first noticed it when logging in (no way to type my password in the log in window). Then I tried several combinations of key combinations (especially with the Fn key), including NumLock, but with no success. I then connected an USB keyboard and it worked. I also logged entered the BIOS setup on start up and, not only the function keys were working (or I wouldn't be able to enter the BIOS setup) but all the other keys (like the arrow keys and enter) were working. So, this doesn't seem to be a problem with the hardware part of the keyboard.
I also booted from an USB stick (Linux Mint 18) and it didn't work.
So:
- keyboard working with BIOS setup
- external keyboards OK
- stopped working within the installed Linux Mint 19.1
- doesn't work with Linux Mint 18 on a USB stick

Any help, please?

Thank you!
Last edited by canhoto on Fri Jan 25, 2019 9:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Linux Mint 19.1
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Laptop: Processor Intel i5-6200U@2.5GHz with Intel HD 520 Graphics, 8 GB RAM

canhoto
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 2:41 pm

Update: the keyboard also works with grub menu. But if I try to go into recovery mode, when the recovery options show up it stops working. I have to use an external keyboard to select the options and enter.
Linux Mint 19.1
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Laptop: Processor Intel i5-6200U@2.5GHz with Intel HD 520 Graphics, 8 GB RAM

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:18 pm

canhoto wrote:- stopped working within the installed Linux Mint 19.1
So, the keyboard did once work with LM 19.1, then stopped one day, correct?
canhoto wrote:- doesn't work with Linux Mint 18 on a USB stick
If the keyboard did once work with LM 19.1, and now doesn't work with a LM 18 native ISO burned to USB (and therefore, has received no updates), I'm suspecting that the issue doesn't have to do with an update that LM 19.1 received.
canhoto wrote:Any help, please?
Have you tried a different live distro? e.g., Ubuntu, or perhaps even something outside of the Debian/Ubuntu/LM lineage? This could help narrow down where the problem lies.

Lastly, to help others assess your issue, post the output of inxi -Fxz here, inside code tags (it's the </> button when you're editing). Obviously using the external keyboard. :)

Joe

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:13 pm

JoeFootball wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:18 pm
So, the keyboard did once work with LM 19.1, then stopped one day, correct?
Correct!
JoeFootball wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:18 pm
Have you tried a different live distro? e.g., Ubuntu, or perhaps even something outside of the Debian/Ubuntu/LM lineage? This could help narrow down where the problem lies.

Lastly, to help others assess your issue, post the output of inxi -Fxz here, inside code tags (it's the </> button when you're editing). Obviously using the external keyboard. :)

Joe
I'll try with different distros.

The output is:

Code: Select all

System:
  Host: carlos-laptop Kernel: 4.15.0-43-generic x86_64 bits: 64 
  compiler: gcc v: 7.3.0 Desktop: Cinnamon 4.0.9 
  Distro: Linux Mint 19.1 Tessa base: Ubuntu 18.04 bionic 
Machine:
  Type: Laptop System: Intel product: Skylake Platform v: 0.1 serial: N/A 
  Mobo: Topstar model: U931 v: RVP7 serial: <filter> 
  UEFI: American Megatrends v: 5.11 date: 03/01/2016 
Battery:
  ID-1: BAT0 charge: 37.6 Wh condition: 38.8/46.6 Wh (83%) model: TPS S10 
  status: Discharging 
CPU:
  Topology: Dual Core model: Intel Core i5-6200U bits: 64 type: MT MCP 
  arch: Skylake rev: 3 L2 cache: 3072 KiB 
  flags: lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx bogomips: 19200 
  Speed: 400 MHz min/max: 400/2800 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 400 2: 400 
  3: 400 4: 400 
Graphics:
  Device-1: Intel HD Graphics 520 driver: i915 v: kernel bus ID: 00:02.0 
  Display: server: X.Org 1.19.6 driver: modesetting unloaded: fbdev,vesa 
  resolution: 1920x1080~60Hz 
  OpenGL: renderer: Mesa DRI Intel HD Graphics 520 (Skylake GT2) 
  v: 4.5 Mesa 18.0.5 direct render: Yes 
Audio:
  Device-1: Intel Sunrise Point-LP HD Audio driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel 
  bus ID: 00:1f.3 
  Sound Server: ALSA v: k4.15.0-43-generic 
Network:
  Device-1: Intel Wireless 3160 driver: iwlwifi v: kernel port: f040 
  bus ID: 01:00.0 
  IF: wlp1s0 state: up mac: <filter> 
Drives:
  Local Storage: total: 223.57 GiB used: 82.12 GiB (36.7%) 
  ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: OCZ model: TRION100 size: 223.57 GiB temp: 33 C 
Partition:
  ID-1: / size: 211.65 GiB used: 82.11 GiB (38.8%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda2 
  ID-2: swap-1 size: 7.92 GiB used: 0 KiB (0.0%) fs: swap dev: /dev/sda3 
Sensors:
  System Temperatures: cpu: 38.0 C mobo: N/A 
  Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A 
Info:
  Processes: 212 Uptime: 4m Memory: 7.71 GiB used: 1.71 GiB (22.2%) 
  Init: systemd runlevel: 5 Compilers: gcc: 7.3.0 Shell: bash v: 4.4.19 
  inxi: 3.0.27 
Thanks!
Linux Mint 19.1
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Laptop: Processor Intel i5-6200U@2.5GHz with Intel HD 520 Graphics, 8 GB RAM

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:24 pm

canhoto wrote:I'll try with different distros.
Also, it may also be interesting to see what happens with a different desktop. e.g., LM 19.1 Xfce.

Joe
Last edited by JoeFootball on Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:27 pm

I tried with Solus OS in a USB bootable drive. Still not working. Somewhere between the BIOS and the OS (or between grub and the OS) the keyboard stops being recognized.
Linux Mint 19.1
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:33 pm

canhoto wrote:I tried with Solus OS in a USB bootable drive. Still not working.
This may be good, as it indicates that the issue isn't OS-centric. And since live sessions don't leverage GRUB, that also indicates it's not the culprit.
canhoto wrote:Somewhere between the BIOS and the OS (or between grub and the OS) the keyboard stops being recognized.
Were you able to confirm that the letter/number keys were working in BIOS setup? Or just the arrow and enter keys?

Could it be that the arrow and enter keys are working when LM 19.1 boots up, but just not the letter/number keys? Would it be possible to test this, (for example) where you use your mouse to open a spreadsheet, and see if you can move the spreadsheet cursor via the arrow keys?

Joe

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:01 pm

JoeFootball wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 4:33 pm
Could it be that the arrow and enter keys are working when LM 19.1 boots up, but just not the letter/number keys? Would it be possible to test this, (for example) where you use your mouse to open a spreadsheet, and see if you can move the spreadsheet cursor via the arrow keys?

Joe
I tried this now, following your advice, but the arrow keys (and the enter and tab keys) don't work. So, something must be happening when the OS boots up. I could try with a Windows thing (to check if it's a Linux-specific problem), but I don't even know how to make a bootable Windows USB (I can look for it, of course).

Carlos
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:23 pm

canhoto wrote:I tried this now, following your advice, but the arrow keys (and the enter and tab keys) don't work. So, something must be happening when the OS boots up. I could try with a Windows thing (to check if it's a Linux-specific problem), but I don't even know how to make a bootable Windows USB (I can look for it, of course).
In your BIOS setup, are there letter/number options that you can try to confirm that aspect of your keyboard is indeed working?

Also, try a live session of LM 18.3 KDE. I recall that the Solus desktop leverages GTK+ (I think), as does Cinnamon, MATE, and Xfce (I think), but KDE does not (I think). I'm just trying to identify commonalities to test for.

I'm not too familiar with Windows, but I don't think I've heard of a live session ISO for it.

Let's keep in mind that LM 19.1 did work once, but not a non-updated LM 18 live session (released prior to your issue) still does not. This was is what makes me curious about the hardware, and validating that letters/numbers do indeed work in BIOS setup. The hardware remains a suspect until then. :)

Joe

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:44 pm

This is weird. I booted Windows 7 installer from an USB drive and the keyboard was working. I then aborted the installation using Esc and Enter keys (I didn't really want to install Windows,of course). But then... When I retried it once it was still working. But the third time I rebooted from Windows...it had stopped working! I tried again and again... and nothing! What's happening? Very weird.
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:00 pm

canhoto wrote:Very weird.
Very weird indeed. Since this symptom presents itself outside of Linux, my hardware suspicion continues.

I've replaced a few laptop keyboards, and I know they're connected by a thin ribbon that seats into a connection only a millimeter or so deep. I'm not recommending that you open up your laptop (yet), but do you recall if it took a good bounce recently?

Another test to consider: With the laptop totally cooled (e.g., not used in the past hour or so), does the keyboard work directly booting to LM 19.1? Troubled hardware can often present different behavior as it warms up.

Joe

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by murray » Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:07 pm

Maybe have a look at http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id- ... ndows.html

I know the above link talks about the keyboard not working in Windows but there are a few things to try that might help you regarding powering off completely that seemed to work for some people.
Running Mint 19.1 Cinnamon on an Intel NUC8i5BEH with 16GB RAM and 500GB SSD

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:28 pm

murray wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:07 pm
Maybe have a look at http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id- ... ndows.html

I know the above link talks about the keyboard not working in Windows but there are a few things to try that might help you regarding powering off completely that seemed to work for some people.
Well, I opened the laptop and disconnected the battery from the motherboard. I waited for one or two minutes. But that didn't fix it. But thanks.
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Thu Jan 24, 2019 10:33 pm

JoeFootball wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:00 pm
canhoto wrote:Very weird.
Very weird indeed. Since this symptom presents itself outside of Linux, my hardware suspicion continues.

I've replaced a few laptop keyboards, and I know they're connected by a thin ribbon that seats into a connection only a millimeter or so deep. I'm not recommending that you open up your laptop (yet), but do you recall if it took a good bounce recently?

Another test to consider: With the laptop totally cooled (e.g., not used in the past hour or so), does the keyboard work directly booting to LM 19.1? Troubled hardware can often present different behavior as it warms up.

Joe
Yes, it's the same after a few hours of cooling. I also tried with Windows 10 on USB. This time it didn't work at all. The weird thing is that it keeps working on BIOS (and on Grub). So that shouldn't mean a hardware problem.
I also opened the laptop, disconnected the COMS battery, waited and reconnected, disconnected the battery from the motherboard and waited, and nothing changed. :(
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:21 am

canhoto wrote:The weird thing is that it keeps working on BIOS (and on Grub). So that shouldn't mean a hardware problem.
That is indeed interesting. Were you able to confirm that the letters/numbers were working in BIOS and/or GRUB, and not just the arrows/enter? That would certainly help demonstrate it's not hardware.

I'm running out of ideas. :? Anyone else?

Joe

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Fri Jan 25, 2019 12:37 pm

JoeFootball wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:21 am
canhoto wrote:The weird thing is that it keeps working on BIOS (and on Grub). So that shouldn't mean a hardware problem.
That is indeed interesting. Were you able to confirm that the letters/numbers were working in BIOS and/or GRUB, and not just the arrows/enter? That would certainly help demonstrate it's not hardware.

I'm running out of ideas. :? Anyone else?

Joe
I tried to use the other keys in BIOS (simulated a password for administrator). They work.
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Fri Jan 25, 2019 5:28 pm

I tried to do a fresh installation of LM 19.1 but the keyboard, of course, didn't work with the Live USB.
The good news is that this time there was a message after the boot menu and after Grub:
firmware bug tsc_deadline disabled due to Errata please update microcode to version 0xb2 (or later)
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:16 pm

canhoto wrote:I tried to use the other keys in BIOS (simulated a password for administrator). They work.
ok, let's see if we can identify where the keyboard stops working. In GRUB, select Advanced Options for LM 19.1, then Recovery Mode for your latest kernel.

At this point, the Linux kernel boots, but not to a graphical UI. Let's see if that changes things.

You should get to the Recovery Menu. Does the keyboard still work from here? I know you said it hasn't before, but let's try now, as it seems that you're having inconsistent results. At this point, you still haven't started any desktop, and are in a textual user interface (as is GRUB). Wondering if that has anything to do with it.

If it still works, select the "Drop to root shell prompt" option. Then Enter for maintenance. You would now be at the command line. Keyboard still work?

EDIT: Regarding the firmware message, I think you'd get that with a new LM install, until you did the microcode update. Not sure this has anything to do with your problem, especially given that Windows causes the same symptoms.

Joe

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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by canhoto » Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:47 pm

JoeFootball wrote:
Fri Jan 25, 2019 7:16 pm
canhoto wrote:I tried to use the other keys in BIOS (simulated a password for administrator). They work.
ok, let's see if we can identify where the keyboard stops working. In GRUB, select Advanced Options for LM 19.1, then Recovery Mode for your latest kernel.

At this point, the Linux kernel boots, but not to a graphical UI. Let's see if that changes things.

You should get to the Recovery Menu. Does the keyboard still work from here? I know you said it hasn't before, but let's try now, as it seems that you're having inconsistent results. At this point, you still haven't started any desktop, and are in a textual user interface (as is GRUB). Wondering if that has anything to do with it.

If it still works, select the "Drop to root shell prompt" option. Then Enter for maintenance. You would now be at the command line. Keyboard still work?

EDIT: Regarding the firmware message, I think you'd get that with a new LM install, until you did the microcode update. Not sure this has anything to do with your problem, especially given that Windows causes the same symptoms.

Joe
First of all, many thanks for your help and patience!
I followed the steps you suggested, but at the Recovery Menu the keyboard doesn't work any more. I connected a USB keyboard to select the "Drop to root shell prompt" and I tried the built-in keyboard again at the root prompt. But it still didn't work.
On the other hand, if I press "c" on the Grub options I get a command-line shell where the keyboard works perfectly. But it's still the grub command-line, not the OS.
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Re: Keyboard stopped working

Post by JoeFootball » Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:30 pm

canhoto wrote: First of all, many thanks for your help and patience!
You're welcome, but while you have compiled great information, I'm still at a loss. Hopefully some wise wizard will find this and assist.
canhoto wrote:I followed the steps you suggested, but at the Recovery Menu the keyboard doesn't work any more. I connected a USB keyboard to select the "Drop to root shell prompt" and I tried the built-in keyboard again at the root prompt. But it still didn't work.
On the other hand, if I press "c" on the Grub options I get a command-line shell where the keyboard works perfectly. But it's still the grub command-line, not the OS.
You have now proven that when a real kernel boots, be it Linux or Windows, your keyboard fails, and it has nothing (apparently) to do with a graphical UI versus a text UI, while GRUB and BIOS setup continue to be unaffected, and everything was fine until something happened one day, and even non-updated live sessions via ISOs released prior to that "something" exhibit the problem.

And with that, I am at a loss. :?

Joe

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