Weird keyboard input failure

In mid September 2014 my newly installed Ubuntu Linux 14.04 operating system developed
what I call a "Weird keyboard input failure".  It appears to be a software problem since
the keyboard works in some situations but fails in the GUI environment of my account
(works in Guest account). The problem makes it almost unuseable and complicates diagnosing
the problem.   This file describes the problem and attemts to fix it in one place at:

EVENTUALLY SOLVED: >Universal Access >Typing  Slow Keys was unitentually active.
reported to Ubuntu-MN list:9/16/14 - Solved: 9-24/14

1) The problem has persisted for a week or so as of this writing and I have observed a number
of possibly related anomolies and symptoms below.

When I boot up Ubuntu 14.04 I use the keyboard to enter my password to log in to my
account ok but after that no keyboard input seems to be recognized. The mouse works,
programs work until keyboard input is needed. I can browse the web as long as I click on
links.  I can not enter URLS form the keyboard I can not type in search strings. I can
paste URLs in but can not hit .

Copy/paste works.  If I could figure out how to get it to accept a carriage return via
copy/paste I could limp along very awkwardly :)

I am able to run the Onboard screen keyboard facility but keyboard input from it is not

Rebooting does not help.

I can go to the guest account and the keyboard works.

2) BTW I have not been able to get to my files from the guest account.
I've tried:
sudo -ufholson bash
and get the error message:
sudo: unable to change to root gid: Operation not permitted

If I could edit my files from the guest account it would be much easier to limp along and
explore since switching between guest and regular account is a lot faster than rebooting
into my old 12.04 system and back.

I can get into my account on my old Ubuntu 12.04 and the keyboard works fine. (I've made a
few modifications there so that it accesses most of the same files as the new system would
so I am using it to get along til the problem is solved.)

3) WHAT I'D DONE BEFORE THE PROBLEM APPEARED that may be related (tho it does not seem likely) :

I'd been using Hibernate and it works (comes out of) but sometimes failed giving a screen
of error messages and hanging.  If I hold the on/off switch down it will shut down and I
can reboot and it says a system program problem has occured and offers to report it.  I
have a picture of the error messages but have not gotten it on here yet.  I saw no way to
copy/paste or look up there erorrs somewhere.

For some time after the keyboard problem when I rebooted (or switch users to my regular
account) it also said a system program problem has occured. I could not report it because
that requires me to enter my password.

The "Details" button on the error message gives no details about the problem, just a link
to details about 'apport' the software for reporting errors. Does that button normally
give details about the error or is there a way to review them (not that I'd understand
what it meant...)

At some point the system program problem warning stopped appearing when rebooting. Maybe
after I installed some upgrades.

The other thing I'd done shortly before the keyboard symptom appeared was that I set an
92kB image as wallpaper. Undoing that made no difference to the keyboard problem.


4) Other observations:

I'm using a USB keyboard and mouse. Unplugging and plugging it back in don't seem to make
a difference. I think both are USB 2.0, I tried them in both 2.0 and 3.0 ports.

Booting Ubuntu 14.04 does not display a grub screen with boot options. I'm pretty sure
that it had options like "safe mode".  It does have a blank display briefly with a maroon
border. I dont remember if the grub screen had this.  I'm pretty sure that when
Ubuntu 14.04 was working completely, there was a grub screen but I'm not absolutely sure,

When the keyboard is not being recognized there are a couple exceptions:

While an application window is active:
o holding the alt key results in the keyboard shortcut menu to appear.
o holding the super key results in the app's menu appar on the top line.

One time keyboard input started working.  This happened after playing with the the
keyboard applet (which usually displays "En" on the status line near the time). So I
started to think it was related to the keyboard app.

The next time I booted up and logged in there was no keyboard input and I tried most
everything with the keyboard app and still no key input. So far I have keyboard input
after logging into my account on Ubutu 14.04 has not worked again other than that one
time. Changing a configuration so the keyboard app icon did not display on the status line
made no difference.

5) Things yet to try:
Boot a 14.04 live cd and look around **
Install 14.04 on another hard drive and experiment with it. **
Create a new account and play with it. I don't know how to do this withoug the keyboard working.
See if keyboard works from virtual terminal It does not recognize Alt-F2 (for esxample) to get to
a virtual terminal
See if keyboard works from safe mode (I expect it will)  I have not been able to there either.

** I've misplaced my 14.04 live DVD :(

I have found little help for this problem and searching for similar symtoms has not
yielded anything.

It seems like it might be a simple operator error - maybe I hit some archane key
combination or clicked on the wrong thing or did something else that resulted in the
symptom.  But I have not been able to consistantly or repeatedly undo it.

6) On Sun, 21 Sep 2014 Jeff Rasmussen on ubuntu-us-mn list wrote:
>Since the keyboard works to type in the password, it sounds like there is
>something in the user profile that might change the keyboard. Does the Caps
>lock or number lock light up and change when you pressed those keys?

The caps lock led and num lock led are off and don't change.

>Can you press ctrl-alt-f1 and get to a full screen command area that
>asks for a username and password?  Does the keyboard work after typing
>in the username and password? (Ctl-f7 or ctrl-f8 will get you back to
>the desktop

I can not get into virtual terminals (it does not respond to ctrl-alt-f1).

>I'm guessing that the use profile has somehow associated a different
>language keyboard after you log into the desktop. There is a system control
>panel called keyboard to manipulate those settings. Click on the upper
>right corner and choose System. Then you should see all the System controls
.with one being keyboard.

>You could try creating another account or try deleting the current profile.

From within the account, I can not create or change accounts since (at least)
one must enter the account password and that does not work.
Is there a way to change Ub 14.04 files from Ub 12.04 that changes Ub 14.04

There are lots of catch 22 situations with this problem. It seems like
I cant fix the keyboard problem because the keyboard does not work...

I tried a different keyboard. Symptoms seem to be the same.

7) Thomas suggested:
>On the web page about your keyboard problem, you report that you can't sudo
>from your guest account.
>You could boot from a USB stick and edit /etc/sudoers to fix this.

I have not accomplished this yet so the guest accound has sudo capability
but am working on it.

>I'd also guess that your keyboard will work fine while booting from a USB
>stick. You might try looking at the "dot files" for your personal account
>(.profile, .bashrc, et al) to see if there's anything that is suspicious.
>Looking at such files with last changed dates around the time of the start
>of the problem might be useful also.

I looked at them but did not see anything but am not sure I'd recognize
a problem.  I have put copies online with links below (after the
"completion" section suspicions that follows.

8) ----- bash_completion error related to keyboard problem ??? ------

On Sat, 13 Sep 2014 06:29:27 I sent bug report: "unexpected token `}' "
related to bash_completion error via:
The text or the report is below (indented one space).

On Tue 16 Sep 2014 06:58:54 I sent the first message to the  Ubuntu-mn list
about the Weird keyboard input failure.  I dont think the keyboard problem
appeared immediately after the  bash_completion error but there was not
much time between them. I was gone (and not using the computer) the first
day of the 3 in between.  I may have pondered the problem for a while
(and taken some time to gain email access) before sending the message
to the Ubuntu-mn list so maybe they are more closely related in time than
I realized.  And therefore I'm beginning to suspect a possible causal

I've put copies of system files online where they can be inspected:

Text of report about completion error report: 9/13/14

 Today after doing updates on my recently installed Ubuntu 14.04 system,
 when I open a terminal I get:

 bash: /usr/share/bash-completion/bash_completion: line 226: syntax error
 near unexpected token `}'
 bash: /usr/share/bash-completion/bash_completion: line 226: `}'

 So far I have not noticed any completion anomalies.

 Note tho I am not sure if it is relevant... prior to the install of
 Ubuntu 14.04, I have used Ubuntu with the tcsh shell rather than
 bash (for historic reasons).  I finally decided to convert to use
 bash. In tcsh I had accumulated numerous command aliases. I copied
 tcsh's .aliases file over to be the basis for my bash command aliases.
 I commented all aliases out and am gradually uncommenting and
 converting those I actually use now.

- End of report about completion error report --

9) ls of dot files in home dir of Ub 14.04:
drwx------  3 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 19 21:19 .adobe
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson    2813 Sep 18 23:25 .bash_history
-rw-r--r--  1 fholson fholson     220 Aug 19 17:00 .bash_logout
-rw-r--r--  1 fholson fholson    3667 Sep  6 07:54 .bashrc
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson    3627 Sep  5 08:45 .bashrc.bak
drwx------ 23 fholson fholson    4096 Sep  9 12:01 .cache
drwx------  3 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 19 18:04 .compiz
drwx------ 23 fholson fholson    4096 Sep 16 05:44 .config
drwx------  3 root    root       4096 Aug 19 18:24 .dbus
-rw-r--r--  1 fholson fholson      25 Aug 19 17:14 .dmrc
drwx------  4 fholson fholson    4096 Sep 22 09:16 .gconf
drwx------  3 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 24 11:36 .gnome2
drwxrwxr-x  2 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 19 22:29 .gstreamer-0.10
drwx------  2 root    root       4096 Aug 19 21:45 .gvfs
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson   11584 Sep 22 09:16 .ICEauthority
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson      59 Sep  5 10:02 .lesshst
drwxr-xr-x  3 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 19 17:14 .local
drwx------  3 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 19 21:19 .macromedia
drwx------  4 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 19 17:15 .mozilla
-rw-r--r--  1 fholson fholson     675 Aug 19 17:00 .profile
-rw-r--r--  1 root    root         66 Sep  5 15:42 .selected_editor
drwx------  2 fholson fholson    4096 Aug 20 07:05 .ssh
drwx------  4 fholson fholson    4096 Sep  9 12:01 .thunderbird
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson     186 Sep 22 09:20 .Xauthority
-rw-rw-r--  1 fholson fholson     131 Sep 19 07:11 .xinputrc
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson     808 Sep 22 09:20 .xsession-errors
-rw-------  1 fholson fholson     832 Sep 22 06:11 .xsession-errors.old

cmdalias (I use this instead of the default filename .bash_aliases )

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