Only PS2 keyboard works before boot; after boot, only USB keyboard works
Posted on 2004-09-01
OK, it is difficult to describe how I got to this problem. This is one of a pair of home built servers running W2K SP4 in English but located in Paris, France. The system drive is mirrored, and there is an entry in the Boot.ini file so that I can boot off either disk. The second system is exactly identical and has no problem.
On the first server, Windows was installed with an English-layout PS2 keyboard but then it was replaced with a French-layout USB keyboard. There was no problem until one day the server had to be rebooted and from there on, the following problem appeared (or became visible, anyway; perhaps it was always there). In the boot process, Windows asks, as usual when it finds several entries in the boot file, which OS needs to be booted, with a countdown of 30 seconds for the user to select one of the two. Usually, after the thirty seconds, if the user doesn't do anything the first OS is booted.
The problem is that
(a) neither the PS/2 keyboard nor USB keyboard (which are now coexisting) allows the user to select which OS to boot; in other words neither allows the user to use the arrow keys, enter key or space bar to select even the currently highlighted OS.
(b) after the countdown is finished, and only then, the system allows the user to press <enter> on the PS/2 keyboard. It hangs until the user does so. The USB keyboard still is completely dead.
(c) after the boot is complete, the control-alt-delete for the login box only works on the USB keyboard, which works great from then on. On the other hand, the PS2 keyboard is dead, even for the enter key.
(d) for a bonus, see if you can answer this. While logging into the login box, the USB keyboard, which if you recall uses a french layout, is programmed to act as a US keyboard, as the PS/2 was originally installed. The french layout only appears after the user (administrator) logs in. I have seen this before and I think it is "normal" behavoir for Windows 2000, I was just wondering if anyone know how to fix this.