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Thread: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

  1. #1
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    Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    If anyone is interested I've finished integrating proper keyboard backlight support into gnome-power-manager (which in turn uses upower to actually control the keyboard backlight) which with any luck will be available in Natty out of the box.

    A similar patch should also land upstream too so Fedora etc should get it for free too in their next release too.

    In essence this allows us to provide the user with greater feedback and control than say just using pommed (ie. we can dim the keyboard on idle like the lcd display etc, and can display nice notifications of the keyboard backlight level too - see attached screenshot).

    If anyone is interested in testing this out, you can use the packages in my ppa and let me know how it works out for you.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Hi,

    thanks for your work. According to a first test, it works fine. However, I'd like to mention some notes:

    1. When running fullscreen applications (e.g., XBMC, World of Goo), that grab input, it is not possible to change the backlight (screen and keyboard) anymore. With pommed running, it worked, because pommed responded to input events beneath the X subsystem.
    2. This also means, that with pommed running, there previously where two applications pommed and gnome-power-manager, that changed screen backlight. A problem, that's now solved without pommed.
    3. According to some other thread, users preferring the fnmode=2 keyboard option, will loose this setting after resuming from suspend, because apparently the module doesn't save it. Pommed could restore this option.


    Hence, it's not that simple to abandon pommed completely, but it's a major step forward.

    BTW: Does this also work with other desktop environments (KDE, XFCE), that don't use gnome-power-manager?

    ciao,
    Mario
    Last edited by _mario_; February 25th, 2011 at 02:09 PM.

  3. #3
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Well done Alex. Will it also work in 10.04 ?
    Last edited by linuxopjemac; February 25th, 2011 at 03:48 PM.
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  4. #4
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    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Hi,

    and some additional minor note: Is it possible to change the implementation to not repeatedly set backlight/send dbus notifications if keyboard brightness is already off/maximum but the user still presses the decrease/increase key? Screen backlight works like this.

    ciao,
    Mario

  5. #5
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Quote Originally Posted by linuxopjemac View Post
    Well done Alex. Will it also work in 10.04 ?
    Probably not unless someone feels like trying to port my patches to the older version of upower and gnome-power-manager which 10.04 uses.

  6. #6
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Quote Originally Posted by _mario_ View Post
    BTW: Does this also work with other desktop environments (KDE, XFCE), that don't use gnome-power-manager?
    If KDE / XFCE add support for controlling the KbdBacklight interface over dbus (via upower) then it will work just as it does now for g-p-m since I've added that support to it.

  7. #7
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Quote Originally Posted by _mario_ View Post
    and some additional minor note: Is it possible to change the implementation to not repeatedly set backlight/send dbus notifications if keyboard brightness is already off/maximum but the user still presses the decrease/increase key? Screen backlight works like this.
    This should be quite do-able, will see what I can come up with.

  8. #8
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Upstream has accepted the updated patch so g-p-m 3.0 will support keyboard backlights out-of-the-box. Unfortunately Natty is stil shipping g-p-m 2.32 so I've just filed an FFE for Natty to merge this patch in so hopefully we'll get out-of-the-box support in Natty too.

  9. #9
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    I read through the various links. Is this feature supposed to be available in natty now?

    I have a samsung laptop with the option to increase/decrease the backlighting on the keyboard with fn + F7/F8, but it doesn't seem to be working on Natty Beta 1.

  10. #10
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    Re: Proper keyboard backlight support available (i.e. no pommed, yay!)

    Yes natty has all this now - you also need kernel support for this - either via ACPI events or a driver which provides a /sys/class/leds/xxx::kbd_backlight interface - so I assume a particular driver will be needed in the kernel to actually set the backlight itself - what is your laptop model?

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