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    Layout in VMs/RDP

    • Started by bombdiggity
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    • Registered: 12-Oct-2015
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    How do you guys get around VMs and such defaulting to qwerty? It drives me crazy that it takes the keycode and not the character. Is there a way around this? (Beyond writing it into the firmware of my keyboard)

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    • From: Belgium
    • Registered: 26-Feb-2008
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    The Linux rdesktop client does not have this issue, so it must be sending characters instead of keycodes like you ask.
    Hence it must be possible for (alternative) Windows RDP clients as well...

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    • Registered: 17-Sep-2015
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    How do you guys get around VMs and such defaulting to qwerty?

    I have been using Linux running inside VMWare running under Windows.  In this scenario, I have to set my preferred layout on both sides separately, and I like it that way: Using a custom keyboard layout on Linux is painless anyway, and as  the virtual machine sees the keycodes not characters, I can use the same xkb file as for  a Linux running natively.

    ghen said:

    The Linux rdesktop client does not have this issue, so it must be sending characters instead of keycodes like you ask.

    Actually, with rdesktop, it is mixed scenario: RDP uses keycodes, however, rdesktop has keymaps that translate characters (or, more precisely, keysyms) back to keycodes, see the -k option and the keymap files that ship with your rdesktop installation.  These keymaps are plain text files, and rdesktop allows users to use their own keymaps.  I use this mostly to hide "local" keypresses that shift levels from the remote side.  This is a fairly good approach, as it allows to use a standard layout on the Windows side (where custom layouts are a pain), and still enjoy one's custom layout.  But some work is required to write the keymap for rdesktop's back translation.

    Last edited by 509 (18-Nov-2015 10:26:06)
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    i just built a linux (64 bit) guest on a linux host (32 bit) yesterday using virtualbox

    for sure it was a bit of a pain until i ran dreymars install script - but then no issues, vanilla colemak available off the bat in ubuntu makes it a fair bit easier when you are trying to sort out full dreymar colemak, or you can plug in an old qwerty keyboard for a bit (I physically move my keys around the place)

    one thing i did note is that the wide angle mod persists from the underlying host, so you don't need to re-apply it in the guest. If you do then it moves the right hand portion of the keys *another* key to the right and you lose a bunch of keys off the right hand side of the board

    Last edited by bph (18-Nov-2015 11:05:46)
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    • From: Oslo, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
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    Usually I've just installed PKL or my Linux stuff in VMs. But lately, one VM in VMWare Player is getting the layout from the Host OS (PKL on Windows) right. But when I use Extend I sometimes get a Win key press in the VM which is hella frustrating. Not sure what to do about that.

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    Unfortunately some of these RDP boxes are 'shared', and I would get yelled at if I changed the layout. For my own VMs I will just install colemak, though I'd rather not, since I have a bunch of snapshots that wan't have it.

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    • From: Oslo, Norway
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    One sure-fire way of getting any VM and just about everything in line will be to edit the registry of the host. Then the key mappings will be "hardcoded" at the lowest possible level, just about. But this won't give you AltGr or special locale mappings or other trappings such as Extend.

    You can edit the registry by-user if you wish, so only your user account on the host machine will be affected.

    Last edited by DreymaR (19-Nov-2015 11:06:52)

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    • From: Belgium
    • Registered: 26-Feb-2008
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    That doesn't scale with many servers, and doesn't work if you share accounts with others.

    The only "right" solution in my opinion is to use the keyboard layout of the client host, which is the one with a physical keyboard attached.  The destination (or VM) system should not care about keyboard layouts.

    On Windows, PKL handles this perfectly well for me.

    Last edited by ghen (20-Nov-2015 09:28:16)
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