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Bug#542030: installation-reports: Forgets keyboard layout in X11

On Sat, 2009-08-22 at 08:52 +0200, Christian Perrier wrote:
> Quoting Sam Morris (sam@robots.org.uk):
> > Package: installation-reports
> > Severity: important
> > 
> > Chose United Keyboard layout in the installer. This choice remains in effect
> > during the installation and on the console after installation, but when I
> > log into X11 I am stuck with a US keyboard layout.
> > 
> > This would make it rather difficult for someone with unusual characters
> > in their password (such as £ or á) from logging in.
> > 
> > I think this happens because the xorg.conf that is created by the installer
> > is empty.
> > 
> > This is a regression from previous releases, which put the keyboard
> > layout chosen by the installer in xorg.conf.
> Sorry, Sam, that your install report got unanswered....
> To get deeper into this, we might need a few more details.
> What installer image were you using, exactly? Was this a daily built
> image downloaded from http://www.debian.org/devel/debian-installer? If
> so, what image was this?
> I would strongly recommend using the netboot (not netinst, netboot)
> image as of now, or eventually the businesscard image.
> Then, what branch of the distribution were you installing? Was this
> the default (thus "testing") or was this unstable (that can be done by
> passing "mirror/suite=unstable" at the boot prompt, or in expert
> install)?

I used the netboot images downloaded from
<http://ftp.nl.debian.org/debian/dists/lenny/main/installer-i386/current/images/netboot/debian-installer/i386/initrd.gz> and <http://ftp.nl.debian.org/debian/dists/lenny/main/installer-i386/current/images/netboot/debian-installer/i386/linux> to install lenny. Unfortunately, installing by any other method was not possible since the system in question did not have a DVD drive. :)

> If you can, can you redo this install by installing unstable?

I'm afraid I can't do this because the systems in question are now in
use. However I think it's probably fixed in unstable, since xorg now
gets its default key map from HAL.

I can poke about the systems next week if you want me to retrieve any
further logs or configuration files from them.

I will try to do a netboot install into a virtual machine when I have a
spare moment and see if I can reproduce this, and see if it's a problem
specific to a network install or whether it comes up with an
installation from CD.

I think the problem is caused by whichever part of the system generates
the xorg.conf; on these systems it was empty, rather than containing the
usual keyboard layout options. As to why it's empty... it's either
intended to be like that (which seems strange; I thought the xorg
autoconfig-from-HAL magic landed post-lenny) or perhaps a bug in the
script causes it to abort before writing out the keyboard configuration.
Such a bug may be specific to the hardware I was installing on (an ASUS
Eee PC 904HD) or it may not. Dunno. :)

Sam Morris

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