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  1. openSUSE 10.2 Complaints - Jonathan Pryor's web log
    1. openSUSE 10.2 Complaints
      1. Drive Partitioning
      2. Using the Windows key

openSUSE 10.2 Complaints - Jonathan Pryor's web log

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openSUSE 10.2 Complaints

Drive Partitioning

I have a genetic deficiency: the default options are never adequate. :-)

In particular, I have three drives: two ISA and an external FireWire drive. /dev/hda had ~13 partitions (/home, /boot, swap, and a set of /, /usr, /tmp, /var etc. directories for two separate installations). Obviously, this is what I had wanted to install to. /dev/hdb had my backups.

What does openSUSE want to install onto? /dev/hdb (my backups), of course! No, that is not happening.

Of course, I also wanted to completely redo /dev/hda to make use of a Logical Volume Manager. This was also more complicated than it needed to be. When using the Expert installer, you can only create a Logical Volume Manager on an already existing partition. So I couldn't delete every partition on /dev/hda, create two new partitions (/boot and the LVM partition), and setup the LVM in the new partition. That wouldn't work. It should work, but it doesn't. So I had to create the two partitions, continue with the installation, abort the installation, restart, and then I could use a LVM on /dev/hda2!


At least it worked though.

Using the Windows key

"Back in the day," when my roommate was trying to convert me to Linux from Windows, I spent a fair amount of time at the "console", outside of X11 or any other GUI environment. One of the nice features that Linux had that FreeBSD and other systems lacked at the time was virtual consoles: pressing Alt+FN (e.g. Alt+F4) would immediately switch to virtual console N. This made it really convenient to run multiple programs concurrently within separate shells, without messing around with &, bg, etc.

I thought this was an excellent feature, so when I moved to using X11 more extensively I wanted to do the same thing with virtual desktops. So I did. The only downside to this is that some apps wanted to make use of Alt+FN shortcuts themselves (e.g. KDE uses Alt+F4 to exit programs), but this was something I was willing to live with.

More recently, I switched to using the Windows key as the virtual desktop modifier, so that Win+FN would witch to virtual desktop N, and Shift+Win+FN would move the current window to virtual desktop N.

I also use the Win key for a host of shortcuts borrowed from Windows, e.g. Win+r to open the Run Program dialog, Win+d to show the Desktop, Win+a to move the current window above all other windows (I use sloppy mouse focus/"focus follows mouse"), Win+b to move the current window below all other windows, etc. I use it a lot.

This is where things go horribly wrong: under openSUSE 10.2, the Win key is always eaten by the Gnome main menu program. Oops.

Even worse, I can't find a way to fix this. Changing the Keyboard Layout in the Keyboard Preferences application doesn't change anything, and none of the Layout Options → Alt/Win key behavior options seem helpful.

The best "compromise" is the Alt is mapped to the right Win-key and Super to Menu option, which still sucks, for two reasons. First, the Menu key can no longer be used to open the context menu (fortunately Shift+F10 still works for this), and two, all of my shortcuts which used to take one hand now take two. Win+F1..Win+F5, Win+r, Win+a, Win+b, etc., could all be done with my left hand. Since the Menu key is on the right, next to the right Ctrl key, I now require two hands for these shortcuts. Which means I can't easily keep one hand on the keyboard and one on the mouse...


Please, someone fix this. It's fundamentally broken. I've been able to use Win as a modifier for literally years, and now I can't, because one broken app decides that the key is only meaningful to it. And removing the Gnome main menu doesn't help, the menu is still displayed.


Posted on 30 Dec 2006 | Path: /development/ | Permalink
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