Antix 19.2 ctrl+ alt not working in IceWM with FR keymap

Forum Forums General Hardware Antix 19.2 ctrl+ alt not working in IceWM with FR keymap

  • This topic has 52 replies, 8 voices, and was last updated May 15-9:06 pm by Robin.
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  • #34553
    Member
    stick

      Hi,

      I’m using Antix on a number of PC’s now and love it — thanks to the team! Problem is that most of my machines have FR keyboards. On those machines, Crtl+Alt does not behave as intended in IceWM. For example, wingrid shortcuts do not work. Now, I can work around that easily by remapping or using the numpad. The real problem is that some applications need Ctrl+Alt for specific functions. With an FR keymap, with Ctrl+Alt pressed, as soon as one uses a mousebutton, the focus window minimises 🙁 I put “generic 105 key” and then “France” map when configuring the machines ( also tried “France, alt” or other FR-maps, generic 101 key etc. etc. — it does not matter). As soon as I change the keymap to US, or “US with French letters”, Ctrl+Alt works normally again. However this is no solution, since FR keyboards are AZERTY, so very hard to type anything correctly anymore then). Also, changing to Fluxbox or JWM solves the problem as well, but I would really like to get it working in IceWM.
      The state changes due to pressing Ctrl+Alt together do show up in xev.
      Anyone have any idea how to fix this in IceWM?

      #34556
      Moderator
      Brian Masinick

        IceWM respects key modification mappings. I believe that the Help features for IceWM have some explanations; if I’m mistaken, then I recently read them by using a Web search for IceWM setup. If you can’t find it, write back and I’ll see if I can pull it up and directly either reference it or paste the relevant details. For the practice, see if you can find it, and if not, please let us know and we’ll try to give you direct instructions or references.

        --
        Brian Masinick

        #34569
        Member
        stick

          Hi,
          Had a deep look at the “preferences” and “keys” files in $HOME/.icewm. Did not find any modifier for how IceWM reacts to Ctrl+Alt — this combination is a modifier in itself and cannot be configured? (i.e. there is no way to say “Mod2″=”Alt Gr + Ctrl” instead of “Alt + Ctrl”)? This would help, FR keyboards distinguish between the Left Alt key and the Right Alt key, which is Alt Gr.

          #106377
          Member
          Wallon

            This bug has never been fixed for IceWM.
            This is still true with Belgian azerty keyboards.
            The keyboard shortcut “Ctrl + Alt” never worked.
            I still have this problem on all 3 computers.

            #106398
            Member
            ChPol

              Hi,
              There are a number of settings that can cause this problem. In icewm preferences:

               
              #  Mouse binding to raise window
              # MouseWinRaise="Ctrl+Alt+Pointer_Button1"
              #  Mouse binding to lower window
              # MouseWinLower="Ctrl+Alt+Pointer_Button1"
               

              The second one is obviously bothering you. (Lines are comments but indicates defaults settings). To change this in preferences:

              MouseWinLower=""
              MouseWinRaise=""

              or, if icewm want settings :

              MouseWinLower="Esc+Alt+Pointer_Button1"
              MouseWinRaise="Esc+Alt+Pointer_Button1"

              You have to restart icewm by menu or “icesh restart” in a terminal for reading new settings in preferences.

              I hope this helps.

              • This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by ChPol.
              • This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by ChPol.
              • This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by ChPol.
              #106452
              Member
              Wallon

                No, it is not.
                We don’t use the mouse.
                The keyboard shortcuts below are not compatible with azerty keyboards.

                
                key "Alt+Ctrl+1" wingrid-left.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+2" wingrid-right.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+3" wingrid-top.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+4" wingrid-bottom.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+5" wingrid-topleft.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+6" wingrid-topright.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+7" wingrid-bottomleft.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+8" wingrid-bottomright.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+9" wingrid-maximize.sh
                key "Alt+Ctrl+0" wingrid-close.sh
                

                You should know that there is also a special feature with the Caps Lock key activated for azerty keyboards.
                You never get the numbers on the keyboard!
                You get capital letters with accents. This is particular to French.
                The following letters are capitalized: key with figure 2 = É, key with figure 7 = È, key with figure 9 = Ç, key with figure 0 = À.
                It is not possible to remap the keys with the numbers because you lose the French alphabet for capital letters with accents.

                #106453
                Moderator
                Brian Masinick

                  I’m sorry about the (now) obvious C locale specific bindings.
                  I don’t have an immediate reference for other keyboards and/or locales, but
                  if others are having problems searching for them, I would be willing to
                  assist in the near future.

                  --
                  Brian Masinick

                  #106462
                  Member
                  Robin

                    azerty keyboards are known to cause all kinds of errors with default shortcuts not working, in multiple programs. Just google for it (search string: azerty ctrl+alt key bindings not working) which comes up with an impressive list of programs, for which azerty breaks the shortcuts on Linux, Apple and Windows. I guess the designers of the azerty keyboard layout have not taken into account to keep at least the commonly used control keys ctrl + alt intact when reassigning all the keys… You’ll need to fix this in every single program relying on the ctrl + alt combinations to work, as long the azerty layout isn’t fixed to deliver the expected control sequences properly.

                    As a workaround you could try to modify the keybindings in all programs like this:

                    key "Ctrl+Alt+&" wingrid-left.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+é" wingrid-right.sh
                    key 'Ctrl+Alt+"' wingrid-top.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+'" wingrid-bottom.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+(" wingrid-topleft.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+§" wingrid-topright.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+è" wingrid-bottomleft.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+!" wingrid-bottomright.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+ç" wingrid-maximize.sh
                    key "Ctrl+Alt+à" wingrid-close.sh

                    Or, since the azerty keyboard has replaced the position of the number keys to the second keyboard level, using the following replacement might also work:

                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+1" wingrid-left.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+2" wingrid-right.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+3" wingrid-top.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+4" wingrid-bottom.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+5" wingrid-topleft.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+6" wingrid-topright.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+7" wingrid-bottomleft.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+8" wingrid-bottomright.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+9" wingrid-maximize.sh
                    key "Shift+Alt+Ctrl+0" wingrid-close.sh

                    Then you must use always use the shift key additionally, but this might easily conflict with already otherwise assigned shortcuts…

                    Not the very best idea of the azerty designers not to keep the control key combinations working, really.

                    You should know that there is also a special feature with the Caps Lock key activated for azerty keyboards.
                    You never get the numbers on the keyboard!
                    You get capital letters with accents.

                    This is definitively something only the keyboard layout designers can fix. They have broken the control keys, so now they can fix it 🙂

                    Windows is like a submarine. Open a window and serious problems will start.

                    #106463
                    Moderator
                    Brian Masinick

                      Thank you for your solution and your explanations Robin.
                      As always, you have very good knowledge, expertise, and helpful information
                      and I look forward to each of your posts.

                      --
                      Brian Masinick

                      #106481
                      Member
                      ChPol

                        Hi,
                        Stick say “The real problem is that some applications need Ctrl+Alt for specific functions. With an FR keymap, with Ctrl+Alt pressed, as soon as one uses a mousebutton, the focus window minimises ????”.
                        That’s not a bug. This is a default Icewm setting. I just test it. With my settings, Stick can use the mouse with the Ctrl+Alt keys without losing focus.

                        #106485
                        Member
                        Wallon

                          Dear Robin,

                          Thank you very much for your help but I am not responsible for this situation.
                          The azerty keyboard was invented in 1890 for mechanical typewriters. Nothing has changed since then AND it will never change. There have already been many meetings on this subject.

                          I have a small reservation for your keyboard shortcuts. Not everyone plays the piano. Using 4 keys becomes uncomfortable. You’ll have to type with 4 hands like on pianos… I’m laughing as I type my text.

                          In my case, as I do a lot of antiX installations in fr, fr_BE, en_US … I will always have to remap the keyboard each time.

                          You are right, many programs do not work or do not work well with azerty keyboards.
                          The best known for Linux is Nano. The shortcuts don’t work and it’s impossible to remap. Ctrl + X to save does not work. With the azerty keyboard, you have to use Ctrl + S to save. That’s why I always use a text editor (Geany) to edit Linux files.

                          As a reminder, there is a second problem with Wingrid. It only works well with one screen! As you know, I often work with several screens and always with azerty keyboards from France or Belgium.

                          Dutch and German speakers in Belgium also use the azerty keyboard.

                          There are not enough keys on our keyboard because we also use glued vowels in our alphabet. For the computer specialists, this was a challenge because it is no longer two characters but one computer character. There would be 273 words with glued vowels, for example heart = « cœur », ox = « bœuf », « curriculum-vitæ »…

                          We also have double capitals to start a sentence, like « Æ » or « Œ »

                          Mit freundlichen Grüßen
                          Wallon

                          • This reply was modified 9 months, 3 weeks ago by Wallon.
                          #106490
                          Member
                          PPC

                            The azerty keyboard was invented in 1890 for mechanical typewriters. Nothing has changed since then

                            Hi Wallon. Keyboards like azerty and hcesar are old, I know. There’s nothing wrong with mapping new characters to existing keyboards. Portuguese keyboards have the standard characters and also special characters, like ç, Ç, and accented characters, like á, à, ã, â, é,è, etc… The problem Robin mentions is not that, but the fact that the persons that configured those keyboard layouts for them to work on PC’s (and it seems, also Mac’s), did not take care to maintain the standard use of the special keys, Ctrl and Alt, reassigning them arbitrarily to other functions… The rest of the world has no idea, of course of how to deal with that. There are probably dozens of keyboard layouts out there, some truly strange to us, users of the Latin alphabet. I never heard of those keys not working with cyrilic keyboards, or chinese keyboards, etc. Because of the choices the persons responsible for how FR keyboards should work, their users suffer. There are only 4 possible ways to solve this (that I can see), in order of probability of ever happening (from most probable to the least probable):
                            – Use software that works correctly with your FR keyboard (if JWM works for you, stick with it and not IceWM, for example; use geany and not nano, etc…)
                            – implement workarounds, like reassigning keyboard short cuts, like Robin suggested (should work, even if you seem to be yoga with your hands)
                            – ask the programmers of the software that you want to use with FR keyboards to include a workaround this problem (you mentioned IceWM and Nano)
                            – ask the entity, whatever it is, that manages those standards to follow the international standards, and wait for those eventual changes to be applied (yeah, good luck with that).

                            P.

                            #106532
                            Member
                            Robin

                              The azerty keyboard was invented in 1890 for mechanical typewriters.

                              I don’t think they actually had a ctrl and an alt key in 1890 already… The control key (on German keyboards it is marked as Strg for „Steuerung” = “Control”) and its combinations are reserved for control tasks at the PC, and the modern azerty computer keyboard layout breaks this rule. So don’t complain to all the program writers and the OS, which follow this easy to understand standard. They just stick to what the ctrl key was invented for, while the computer azerty layout designers did not. It’s just like PPC has stated:

                              Because of the choices the persons responsible for how FR keyboards should work, their users suffer.

                              To be precise: It’s not due to the choices the original typewriter designers of azerty made in 1890, but due to the choice not to respect the control function of the ctrl key in modern PC azerty layout, this is why you actually have to suffer now. French speaking people should file bug reports to the PC keyboard layout designers/programmers, not to all the myriads of individual programmers perfectly fine using the control key for control tasks…

                              You’ll have to type with 4 hands like on pianos… I’m laughing as I type my text.

                              I’m laughing also while reading this, since I actually do play the (classical) piano. So I at least don’t have any issue to press whatever strange multi-key combination on the PC keyboard. It’s just like fingering chords. Two hands are perfectly enough, don’t forget: you have 10 fingers, 5 on each side, and the PC keyboard is not 1,30m wide. 🙂

                              Cordialement
                              Robin

                              Windows is like a submarine. Open a window and serious problems will start.

                              #106598
                              Member
                              Wallon

                                Dear Robin, Dear PPC,

                                I received explanations from Canonical for the behaviour of Azerty keyboards.

                                You can change the behaviour and have numbers with the Caps Lock key but you lose 4 letters of the French alphabet.
                                As there are no more free spaces on the keys, you can’t find these 4 letters on the keyboard.
                                Moreover, you have to reboot the PC each time you want to change the keyboard behaviour. This is not practical.
                                It is comfortable if I use antiX in English and type everything in English with an Azerty keyboard for example.

                                There are no international keyboard shortcuts.
                                For example, a linux distribution of French origin will make keyboard shortcuts with the “Alt Gr” key.
                                This will not work for English and Spanish keyboards. There is no “Alt Gr” key.
                                We use the “Alt Gr” key all the time in French, especially to have the typographic apostrophe, which no longer creates problems in translations. It is unthinkable to do without the “Alt Gr” key in French.

                                Now the antiX community knows that keyboard shortcuts do not automatically work with all keyboards.
                                So, we need an ISO image that adapts the keyboard shortcuts to the keyboard of each country.

                                Cordialement,
                                Wallon

                                #106604
                                Moderator
                                Brian Masinick

                                  https://www.antixforum.com/forums/topic/antix-19-2-ctrl-alt-not-working-in-icewm-with-fr-keymap/#post-106462

                                  Wallon, I definitely appreciate your concerns and frustration but I agree with Robin and his suggestion in the post above (provided the link to the specific post, does provide a solution.

                                  I recommend putting this into a small executable script and sharing it with other people.

                                  --
                                  Brian Masinick

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