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Thread: Terminals in Kali not accessible with screen reader

  1. #1
    Join Date
    South Africa

    Question Terminals in Kali not accessible with screen reader

    Goo day,

    I am running Kali latest in VMWare, but the terminals are not accessible with Orca, the screen reader that ships with Kali as it only reads the menu bar at the top and no output when inputting commands.

    Google cannot help me and I have downloaded various images like the Live boot, the VMWare image and the full image with all the tools. I have also tried the image that let you choose what software to install and I chose Gnome, because it is accessible. The image installed fine, but when starting orca, you get an error message saying something like "This is a dummy module. Your speech dispatcher is working, but some of its dependencies..." and then the same message is repeated over and over.

    The root terminal emulator kills the screen reader totally. So, no luck there.

    I believe I have three options:
    1. Trying to SSH from my host (windows) into Kali and install the Gnome-terminal package. SSh, however, is disabled (vendor preset) and I can't enable it, so no go.
    2. Try and build a custom image with Gnome and its terminal.
    3. Use another OS, but I don't want to do this.

    I also don't want to file a bug report yet, as I may be doing something wrong.

    Any advice would be much appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Try a manual install of gnome first, as this should pull in all the dependencies it needs as well;

    sudo apt-get install gnome-core kali-defaults kali-root-login desktop-base

    Hopefully that will sort it. You've sent me down a rabbit hole now, so I will find a working solution!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    South Africa

    Thanks much

    Hi, thanks. It works. I'm using the Gnome terminal for now so, no problems on that score.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Hi groothendrik,

    I did try several methods actually in testing, the chap who was part of the Orca team even wrote a Python based application called Fenrir that would read terminal input, and I even tried with the 'espeak' module, and this method was successful in gaining the required functionality in a system without a Gnome desktop, but still relied on Orca quite a bit in places.

    I found, as you yourself already knew being a screen reader user, that by far the easiest and most successful method is to simply install and use the Gnome desktop environment. I even installed Kali fresh twice whilst testing, just to see what the most minimal options were, for me of course it was very different hearing things spoken to me, and I often found the (somewhat robotic) default voice speed a little quick to fully grasp everything, but Gnome really is the only desktop experience that is fully functional for screen readers from the original set up!

    It was a good experience to get into this, and I must admit that apart from Gnome, everything seemed rather convoluted and a clunky experience, which does suggest that other desktop providers have some way to go to catch up. The thought, "I'ts simple not good enough, in todays society", sprang to mind.

    Best wishes, and I am glad it's working for you!

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