Hi! I'm a completely newbie in this, sorry for that, but after reading a lot of documentation I couldn't find an answer to my problem, so I thought it would be time to ask.
I installed debian, the default installation for beginners, which installs gnome. Then I decided I like xfce more, and also installed it. I use a keyboard and a mouse (both PS/2) connected to the computer through an USB-PS/2 adapter, (it has two PS/2 outputs). When I start gnome everything works fine, but with xfce only the mouse will work, that's why I suppose it has something to do with xfce and I'm asking here.
I was trying to fix it, and looked like sometimes xfce would recognize it (if the computer was turned off last time from gnome or something like that) but I couldn't really find the pattern and now the only way to make it work with xfce is to start gnome, then go out of gnome and start xfce. Furthermore, before the keyboard would sometimes work in the login screen (before you start gnome or xfce), when it worked in that screen it also worked in xfce. The problem is that I don't know what did I do, but now it never works in that screen.
I suppose it has to be some kind of service or something like that, but I cannot figure it out and I don't know what could I do to get my keyboard to work.
Thank you very much!
PD (20090227): I know which is the difference between gnome and xfce causing this!! Gnome activates the signal for numeric block in the keyboard, which activates it. xfce does not, but, I can press that button in my laptop keyboard so the one plugged by usb will receive the signal and wake up. Then I can use the other keyboard.
(I had to try)
Most applications write a lot of stuff to log files. Reading them through should tell you what went wrong.
/var/log/Xorg.0.log (or whatever is there) and look for lines that start with (EE).
Try to log in to a text console before logging into X (CTRL-ALT-F1) to read the previous logs.
Sometimes GDM (Gnome display manager) does not like starting anything but Gnome -- try another one or resetting its settings to default.
It's Linux after all: You can achieve anything if you don't give up too early ;D
There are no errors in the log.
Beside of that, I uninstalled and reinstalled gnome (by mistake :oops:) and the settings were kept, so I don't know how to reset the settings of GDM. I'll try SLiM now, but I don't know if I will be able to start a session in X again, so... wish me luck!
PD: SLiM did not help, I could not start gnome with it and the keyboard was not detected, among other problems.
I've just noticed that when I start windows and restart my computer the keyboard works correctly without using gnome, which is quite strange as it seems to be related with the USB adapter or something like that, as it would keep the power during a restart.
However with xfce it doesn't work and with gnome and windows it does, so I'm guessing it is a sort of signal or something similar that has to be sent to the USB adapter to start it (staying in that state between restarts) and xfce does not send it.
Sorry to hear that.
Besides, I'm still not convinced that xfce has to do anything with that,
because it just talks to the hardware the same way gnome does.
Try the following:
Log out, go to a virtual console with CTRL+ALT+F1, log in, type
sudo /etc/init.d/gdm stop startxfce4
if this works, then your gdm install is defective.
It didn't work. gdm does nothing with the keyboard, nor xfce does, only with gnome and windows it is "initialized", then it works until the computer is turned off, I suppose it is because it loses the power supply as I can can even restart the computer and the keyboard still works.
I've also discovered that when I set my computer to hibernate I have to login to gnome again for my keyboard to work, so it seems to be more of a power related matter, as I hypothesized before, than software (as everything in the computer is restored after hibernating).
It still works with gnome and not with xfce, so there must be a difference between them in this regard.
I think I found something really strange, didn't I?