USB Keyboard is not working with a custom kernel

Lowell Gilbert freebsd-questions-local at
Wed Dec 10 09:24:49 PST 2008

Please don't top-post.

נור דאוד <noor at> writes:

> OK... This could work eventually, but think about another fact:
> With GENERIC kernel, everything works correctly. I plug and unplug the keyboard, and it interacts wonderfully.

Right.  The generic kernel has kbdmux these days.

> Noor
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Polytropon [mailto:freebsd at] 
> Sent: Wednesday, December 10, 2008 3:03 PM
> To: נור דאוד
> Cc: freebsd-questions at
> Subject: Re: USB Keyboard is not working with a custom kernel
> On Wed, 10 Dec 2008 07:33:44 +0200, "??? ????" <noor at> wrote:
>> With this kernel, whenever I connect a USB keyboard, I see on
>> the console an alert ("USB keyboard device this and that,
>> connected to ....") and even the make/model of the keyboard
>> is shown, but the keyboard doesn't work. The Num/Caps locks
>> work (I mean, the light on the keyboard alternates between
>> ON/OFF whenever press on the keys).
>> Anyone knows what's the problem? And how to fix it?
> This *may* be due to kbdmux. On older FreeBSD systems (such
> as FreeBSD 5), you had to manually change the active keyboard
> using the kbdcontrol command. Let's say, you have an AT keyboard
> present (which has the "focus") and you plugged in the USB
> keyboard, the keyboard would get recognized and powered (so
> you can toggle the Blinkenlights), but no input would come
> from it. Then you would have to use the "focused" keyboard
> /dev/kbd0 (=/dev/atkbd0) to "change focus" to the USB one
> /dev/kbd1 (=/dev/ukbd0). Since kbdmux has been introduced,
> "focus" is on all keybpards that are plugged into the system,
> so it doesn't matter where you type something.
> Maybe you could check the presence of kbdmux or use an AT
> keyboard to check via kbdcontrol.

Lowell Gilbert, embedded/networking software engineer, Boston area

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