French keyboard ... still pending, sorry


Forum: User Feedback
Topic: French keyboard ... still pending, sorry
started by: winux

Posted by winux on Jan. 02 2008,01:43
Hi everyone

I'm back  :laugh: !!! I'm very happy to have retrieved this forum, because I lost the URL. Everything's fine then.

Well well well, for the ones who might remember, I came here a long time ago (DSL 2.2 RC1!!) with a problem which has never been solved. I dropped it for a while, then I came back to DSL that I love, but the problem is still there  :( . Some kind of disappointement to me. Hope it can be fixed.

Let me remind you:

I'm in France so I've got a French keyboard. I booted on DSL live CD 4.2.2 after having entered dsl lang=fr

Actually I've got an azerty keyboard, but not quite French because I don't have the special letters, you know, the ones with something on top or below, such as -----, ...

Has any French people faced this problem recently? did he find a solution? how did he do if he got through.

That's it: simple to state, not so simple to solve (from my experience !). Any kind of help will be more than welcome, Thx in advance.

Anyway, I wish you a happy nex year

Posted by kuky on Jan. 02 2008,09:33
go to


< http://damnsmalllinux.org/cgi-bin....63;st=0 >

ad with   xmodmap have a good solution...

Posted by LeSanglier on Jan. 02 2008,17:45
Hello !

I resolve a part this problem with this tip :
< http://sitelibre.free.fr/forum7/viewtopic.php?t=60 >
But i can not do a circumflex.

Posted by winux on Jan. 02 2008,22:32
Thx to both of you guys, I'll follow the links right away.

Have a nice day

Posted by winux on Jan. 02 2008,23:36
Quote (LeSanglier @ Jan. 02 2008,18:45)
Hello !

I resolve a part this problem with this tip :
< http://sitelibre.free.fr/forum7/viewtopic.php?t=60 >
But i can not do a circumflex.

That's great Sanglier fr-latin1 is the solution, I've got everything, Thx a lot, merci beaucoup cet autre Franais dans la dtresse.

Have a nice day guys

Posted by winux on Jan. 06 2008,00:16
Hello guys

Actually it's not as fine as I thought during the first approach.

1- I tried on a PC Duron 1200 MHz and the keyboard worked beautifully with Notepad, Firefox BUT not with Beaver, why ??

2- I tried on two Pentium II 199 and 233 MHz and the keyboard did not work (not French) for none of these two.

I cannot understand why with the same live CD, doing the same procedure, It works on one kind of PC and not with others. That's very strange to me!!! :angry:

Any ideas guys, because actually I need it work on Pentium II, not on less old PCs !!

Thx fot your help  :)

Posted by kuky on Jan. 06 2008,20:46
try to test these trick (i supoused a hd install and fr latin setup)

ceate frmod with
beaver /home/dsl/frmod
(write)

Clear Mod4
add Mod5 = Mode_switch

(save and exit)

put # and add line in /home/dsl/.xinitrc (press H box down Bookmarks to see hiden .files in emelFM) emelFM as super user, right clik on /home/dsl/.xinitrc select view an edit the next lines

# For non-US Keyboards
# if [ ${KEYTABLE:0:2} != "us" ]; then
#  xmodmap -e "clear Mod4" -e "add Mod5 = Mode_switch" &
# fi
  xmodmap /home/dsl/frmod  &

(save and exit)

(ctrl alt and type exit) or reboot dsl i am  not secure of these steep (ctrl alt)

i think that the routine if keytable do not work all the times and with the trick you force to keys in diferent language than US

in spanish its neccesary to add keysim  vocals because the accents are writen in to steeps first the vocal y second a separate  accent..

au revoir mon ami

Posted by winux on Jan. 06 2008,22:25
Thanks for your nice and comprehensive answer kuky.

Actually in the meantime, I completed the procedure to install a foreign KB. I give here the result. I'm rather happy with it. Much better than release 2.2 two years ago I'd been struggling with. Anyway I'll try your solution to see if it brings any improvement.

Have a nice day kuky, and also all the people of this forum

Here we go:

In order to setup the French keyboard on the current 4.2.2 version DSL live CD , I did the following on 5 different PCs. The result is about the same on the 5 units, I'll list the slight differences just for your information and also maybe for the developers ... Heu Robert you're in the background? :p

A- Setup of the French Keyboard
1-at boot, I typed : dsl lqng=fr (because we startup with qwerty keyboard and on a French KB, a=q)
2- after boot, I checked the KB : Setup > Keyboard and I saw fr  fr
3- I changed it to latin1 : MyDSL > System > xkeycaps.dsl > download
4- I ran xkeycaps.app
5- I selected
vendor = pc
keyboard = 105 keys
layouts = XFree86;French
5- OK button
6- write output > all keys > OK (I did not do that on my previous post!!)
7- Ctrl + Alt + Back space > startx

B- Results depending on the PCs
1- on one PC (the only Intel one ?!), when I checked the result: Setup > Keyboard
I got fr  fr-latin1
2- on the four others (AMD Duron and Athlon), I still got fr   fr
3- for these four, I had to force latin1 from Setup > Keyboard
4- after Ctrl + Alt + Back space > startx, I was in the same situation as with Intel PC

C- what's right, what's wrong
1- trial with Notepad
everything's fine for 4 PCs:
- accentuated letters such as , , , , : OK
- letters with separate associated sign such as (^+ o), ,: OK
- shift 1st line such as 1, 2, 3, 4: OK
- Alt Gr 1st line such as #, @: OK
the 5th PC, the weakest, Pentium II MMX 200 MHz
- every thing's fine EXCEPT: Alt Gr 1st line meaning NO #, @
2- trial with Beaver
- accentuated letters: NO display, nothing appears on the screen
- letters with separate associated sign: NO good I've got ^o, ^e, ...
- shift 1st line and Alt Gr 1st line: OK
3-trial with Terminal & Firefox (writing in Google search)
every thing's fine EXCEPT letters with separate associated sign

Posted by winux on Jan. 06 2008,23:11
Hi again kuky

After my previous long "speech", I looked carefully at your reply. A few questions if you do not mind:

1- Is your solution working, as a test, on a live CD version (not installed yet) I think so
2- if I understand correctly
a) I create frmod (/home/dsl/frmod)
b) I write in it:
Clear Mod4
add Mod5 = Mode_switch
c) save
d) in .xinitrc (/home/dsl/.xinitrc)
hide (#): the lines you stated
add: xmodmap /home/dsl/frmod  &
e) save

I think I understood your script, it avoids question: US keyboard yes/no, then you force the scenario non US keyboard, correct?

Should also work on live CD for trial won't it? but better on an installed HD, makes more sense.

Thanks again for your time kuky, hope you have nice weather in Spain, Buenas noches amigo

Posted by curaga on Jan. 07 2008,18:24
You can add "loadkeys fr-latin1" to the end of bootlocal.sh, and you will get latin1 keys automatically on boot (if you have a backup set up, that is).

Seems the default keys for lang=fr should really be changed to fr-latin1..

Posted by curaga on Jan. 07 2008,18:29
I just checked; there are many FR keymaps for azerty keyboards included, you could try them all to see which is best, and then tell us so it can be made the default :)

There are:
fr-latin1 fr-pc fr-latin0 fr-latin9 fr-x11
besides the standard fr

Posted by winux on Jan. 07 2008,19:32
Quote (curaga @ Jan. 07 2008,19:24)
You can add "loadkeys fr-latin1" to the end of bootlocal.sh, and you will get latin1 keys automatically on boot .

Seems the default keys for lang=fr should really be changed to fr-latin1..curaga

Thx for your reply curaga

1- I noted down your info regarding bootlocal.sh. I assume this is relevant for an installed version. So far I'm testing the live CD to see if there is no blocking point (such as French KB!!) to install it on my old PC

2- Absolutely, the default fr should actually be "fr-latin1" which is the most suitable.

The only thing I don't understand is:
why is the[b] result different depending on:
a) the application? i.e. Beaver, Notepad, Terminal, Firefox
b) and sometimes the PC??

Posted by winux on Jan. 07 2008,19:36
Quote (curaga @ Jan. 07 2008,19:29)
I just checked; there are many FR keymaps for azerty keyboards included, you could try them all to see which is best, and then tell us so it can be made the default :)

There are:
fr-latin1 fr-pc fr-latin0 fr-latin9 fr-x11
besides the standard fr

Yes Curaga, I saw the other French KB, but the best is definitely the latin1. Should be the default one please. Possible for the next release??  :p
Posted by kuky on Jan. 07 2008,21:21
yes is for hd install...dsl its more funny in hd install(i think so) its esay to do ,dsl its peacefully coopeerating with win98se in my pcs..
to install dsl in old windows pcs i  recommend
1)  defrag in windows your hd to put the bytes in  order at the begining of hd. make a copy of your files (historical files i supoused with a pentiun II)
2) download gparted and made a iso cd (gparted.sourceforge.net)
3) run gparted and resize the windows partition , (free 2.2-4.2 GB at the end of hd)you  can see that you do..
4) with the free part add a ext2(linux part of 2-4 GB) and another  small part swap of  200 Mb, flag as bootable the ext2.

Now you have a hd with these aspect to linux

hda1 windows fat part
hda2 linux ext2 part

if you run hdinstall in dsl only have to install dsl in hda2

and begin the legend...at last winux change the nick by frinux...


:laugh: :laugh:

Posted by winux on Jan. 07 2008,21:48
Hi Kuky

I agree there's more fun with DSL installed. Actually I did it 2 years ago with 2.2 release, on this old Pentium II, 2 Go HD which has nothing else in its body because I'm not interested by Windows any more, I think Linux is the future.

I dropped that PC somewhere in my cellar because of the keyboard. I was fed up to struggle with it.

Now I see a real improvement in the French KB, so this version is usable and I will install it for sure. In parallel on my second old crap Pentium II I will install slax (maybe I should not mention it here, but I assume Linux people are very open minded  :p ) which also seems very nice. I think DSL will be faster on old PCs but I'll make the comparison, just for fun and ... my knowledge.

I've got a big job to do then: testing 2 Linux light versions!!

Have a nice evening, because for me I'm close to 23 hours :)

Posted by curaga on Jan. 08 2008,17:55
We don't mind, go ahead and try Slax too :)
Posted by winux on Jan. 08 2008,19:33
Quote (curaga @ Jan. 08 2008,18:55)
We don't mind, go ahead and try Slax too :)

Linux community is great, very open minded as I said before :D .

First feeling: Slax is nice too, maybe a little bit more user friendly (just a little bit :p !!). But on the other hand, DSL reacts much quicker with my old crap Pentium II 199 MHz.

That's why after a one day infidelity, I come back to my first fiancee: DSL :laugh: .

Have a nice day

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