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login and keyboard mapping problems

I installed LM 7.02 with the highest security in my Dell Latitude laptop. Now I have two problems:
1. When run  at leve 5, only the root account can login, even though I
can su to other regular users after I login as root.

2. When run at level 3, some keys in the right half of my keybord are messed up, for example, when you press 'u', you will see '4' or something like that. So I cannot do anything with the login prompt.

Has someone met some problems of this kind? What are the possible reasons? Thanks.
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chench
Asked:
chench
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1 Solution
 
jlevieCommented:
I don't know about (1), what error do you get when trying to login as a user other than root?

As to (2), that's probably because the keyboard hasn't been fully initialized and it's in "Numeric Keypad mode". You might be able to fix that by changing the bios to have "NumLock" set to off.
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chenchAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the answer to my second question. For the first one, it's like this:
Whenever I login as normal user through the graphical login window, the authentication seems to pass, but the window flashes and comes back to the login window. Probably the system cannot find the right desktop configuration for the normal user? Maybe there are some other reasons.
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jlevieCommented:
I can think of two probable causes. The user's home dir specification in /etc/passwd is invalid, or the desktop files in that user's home dir are corrupt. Check the former by trying to login as that user directly on the console. If the homedir is invalid the system will tell you. If the system is configured for graphical login, you can access a console screen via the ctrl-alt-F1 hotkey. The latter can be cured by removing the desktop files from the user's home dir and letting the system rebuild them. I need to know what window manager you're using to tell you waht to delete.
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chenchAuthor Commented:
I changed to the console and logined successfully as normal user, but cannot login as root (is it strange?). By the way, how to get back to the graphic login from the console?
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chenchAuthor Commented:
I usually use KDE and GNOME.
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jlevieCommented:
Oh, I forgot to tell you how to get back... ctrl-alt-F7 should do it. After you logged the user out, what happend when you tried to login as root?
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chenchAuthor Commented:
Now I can login as noraml user through the graphic method. But two more problems remain:

1. I still cannot login as root in the console;
2. The NumLock is always turned on wheneven I switch to the console, even if I disable the NumLock in the Bios.
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jlevieCommented:
As to (1), what happens when you try to login as root from the console screen?

As to (2) that's odd, Linux normally ignores the bios NumLock state and turns NumLock off as it boots. I wonder if it's not real happy with your hardware?
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chenchAuthor Commented:
when I login as root from the console, it says "login incorrect" and just bounce back. I would not think I typed the wrong password because I have tried so many times.

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jlevieCommented:
Is NumLock on then? If you trun Numlock off can root log in on the console?
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chenchAuthor Commented:
I turned the Numlock off and the keyboard was working fine. I can login as regular use and su to root after the login. But I cannot login as root from the console. It this a security feature, or something is wrong?
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jlevieCommented:
It may be, I'm not overly familiar with how "LM 7.02 with the highest security" would behave. Out of curosity, why would you have set it up like that?
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chenchAuthor Commented:
I was thinking the higher the security, the better it would be.
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jlevieCommented:
Yeah, in general that's probably a good thing to do, but maybe only after you've had enough experience with the particular OS on that particular box. Otherwise it get's rather confusing trying to figure out why something doesn't work. Is it the security features, and if so where is that feature controlled, or is it a hardware problem with box or a generic software problem in the OS or application.
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chenchAuthor Commented:
I backed up the files under /etc/X11 and /usr/X11R6/ in order to install the new XFree86 4.0. After failing to configure the new x server to support my neomagic video card in my labtop, I copied the files back to /etc/X11 and /usr/X11R6. Now the same problem happened. I cannot login as regular through the GUI but can do so through the console. What are the files related to the GUI login process?
Thanks.
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jlevieCommented:
How does it fail when you try the graphical login? Can root do a graphical login?
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chenchAuthor Commented:
I installed the XFree86 4.0 on my Dell Laptop with Neomagic video card.  Following are the benefits I got from this installation:
1.  The problem I previouly reported  was gone. So, the problem might be with the original x server.
2.  The color menus for Netscape are back at 24 bits, which I would like to
see verification from  folks like you.
Thanks.

Chunnuan
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jlevieCommented:
Well that would make more sense that the "security settings"  being a problem. Generally most of the Neomagic framebuffers work well with Linux, but on Laptops things get tricky and a Neomagic chipset that works on one may not work well on another.

Getting 24 bit color back is certainly a function of the X server. I didn't know that you had that problem or we might have looked at the X server as a source of the problem.

At any rate, I'm glad it's working now and I think we both learned something from the experience.
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