VMware Workstation & Ubuntu 8.10 Ctrl-Alt-Ins not working

Well, if some of you haven’t heard (from twitter) – I recently lost my HDD. Which not only stinks, but it is a huge pain having to rebuild to exactly how you like your system.  So I figured this would be a good time to upgrade to Ubuntu 8.10 (previously I ran 8.04).  After getting my O/S exactly how I like it, I installed VMware Workstation 6.5 and thankfully was able to recover my VMDK from my failed disk (more details in another blog later) and it started up just fine.   But, for some reason some of my keys were not working, first thing I noticed was Ctrl-Alt-Ins didn’t work (the alternative to Ctrl-Alt-Del for Windows logons).  Luckily, Duncan over at Yellow-Bricks already hit this hurdle and posted a blog on how to resolve.  Thanks Duncan!

From Yellow-Bricks.com….

I just noticed that when running a VM on VMware Workstation 6.5 and Ubuntu 8.10(but this problem probably also occurs on other non-Windows OS’es), you can’t use the arrow keys. But also ctrl-alt-ins isn’t working, which is annoying cause you would have to do it with the mouse. And no arrow keys also means that you can’t browse through your command-line history in Windows or Linux for that matter. Luckily there are two work arounds:

  1. sudo gedit /etc/vmware/config
  2. add the following to end of the file and save the file when done:
    xkeymap.nokeycodeMap = true
  3. If that doesn’t work try adding the following:
    xkeymap.keycode.108 = 0×138 # Alt_R
    xkeymap.keycode.106 = 0×135 # KP_Divide
    xkeymap.keycode.104 = 0×11c # KP_Enter
    xkeymap.keycode.111 = 0×148 # Up
    xkeymap.keycode.116 = 0×150 # Down
    xkeymap.keycode.113 = 0×14b # Left
    xkeymap.keycode.114 = 0×14d # Right
    xkeymap.keycode.105 = 0×11d # Control_R
    xkeymap.keycode.118 = 0×152 # Insert
    xkeymap.keycode.119 = 0×153 # Delete
    xkeymap.keycode.110 = 0×147 # Home
    xkeymap.keycode.115 = 0×14f # End
    xkeymap.keycode.112 = 0×149 # Prior
    xkeymap.keycode.117 = 0×151 # Next
    xkeymap.keycode.78 = 0×46 # Scroll_Lock
    xkeymap.keycode.127 = 0×100 # Pause
    xkeymap.keycode.133 = 0×15b # Meta_L
    xkeymap.keycode.134 = 0×15c # Meta_R
    xkeymap.keycode.135 = 0×15d # Menu

Thanks goes out to AlexPX and Johannes for pointing us out to this solution. There’s also a KB article on this one I just noticed.


Created on January 29, 2009 by Rick Scherer

Posted under Linux, Workstation.

This blog has 6,871 views.

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4 Comments so far

  1. Duncan
    1:06 pm on January 29th, 2009

    I moved from Ubuntu 8.10 to OpenSuse 11.1, Ubuntu crashed every three hours because of a memory leak. Never found the process that caused this to happen.

  2. Rick Scherer
    1:21 pm on January 29th, 2009

    Sorry to hear you had so much grief with Ubuntu 8.10 — I’ve been running for about 24 hours now without one issue. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

  3. rbrambley
    6:05 pm on February 1st, 2009

    I discovered that ctrl+alt+ins did not work in the VMware Server 2.0 Remote Console from my Ubuntu desktop this weekend. Turns out that in Ubuntu the ins key is mapped to the Numperpad Del key for some reason. That worked for me, but I have not confirmed this works in Workstation too. http://vmetc.com/2009/01/30/ubuntu-send-ctrlaltdel-command-to-vmware-server-vm/

  4. toine
    6:30 am on December 28th, 2009

    I have the same problem but this doesn’t work, “setxkbmap” also doesn’t work for me, another problem is VMware a few seconds after starting just disappears. It does this most times but sometimes it just works. I first noticed I lost shift but after restarting ubuntu IT WORKS again but is still can’t use ctrl in ubuntu (karmic koala) (main), but I can in windows (VMware).

    I remember a sign when starting VMware which was talking about something with my keyboard, it wanted to override the lock or something

    edit: -I’m the only user on this pc with this problem but also the only one who use VMware
    -when VMware disappears, all panels disappears and come back in a second but the icons on my desktop
    -I just tried my arrow-keys, the horizontal also fail but the vertical work fine

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