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Thread: Keyboard stopped working in Kali within VMware

  1. #1
    Join Date
    2022-Jul
    Posts
    3

    Keyboard stopped working in Kali within VMware

    After successfully installing the current release of Kali within my VMware Workstation v.16 environment, the keyboard didn't work. I followed instructions for the VM Settings, to "display all USB devices" and also for the enhanced keyboard to "use if available." After restarting the Kali VM, everything seemed to be okay and the keyboard worked. I then installed Nessus in Kali and after that completed, the keyboard stopped working again. Now, starting at the login screen, the keyboard is not working - the Caps Lock light is 'on' and I can't get it cleared to be off. I did find a newer posting related to the enhanced keyboard setting and changed it to "off." I was then able to complete the installation of Nessus and used it to run several scans, successfully. I shutdown the Kali VM and came back the next day, and it again would not recognize the keyboard.

    Here is a summary of my environment: Host - PC running Windows 11 Pro 64-bit with 32GB RAM, Intel i5 processor (12 cores) and 2TB on three internal hard disks; VM environment uses one 500GB hard drive, hosted on VMware Workstation Pro v.16.2; the Kali VM has 4GB memory, 4 processors, 90GB virtual disk, USB controller set to USB 3.1 with "show all USB input devices."
    - Alan W.
    Last edited by ABWatkins; 2022-07-28 at 19:49. Reason: Added more details about hosting environment.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    2021-May
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    507
    how old is the USB keyboard, most are only USB 2 capable try downgrading the USB setting..

  3. #3
    Join Date
    2022-Jul
    Posts
    3
    It's a brand new keyboard that came with the new computer three months ago. It's an HP brand, 109-key, low profile USB keyboard. I have tried changing the setting between USB-2 and USB-3, and it doesn't seem to make a difference either way. I will leave it at USB-2 with the enhanced keyboard set to 'off.'

  4. #4
    Join Date
    2021-May
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    507
    When in VM have you tried unplugging the USB keybaord and plugging back in?

    I know with several USB devices in a VMWare Fusion, I find it better to not let things automatically connect, and then when its inserted you get an option to send it to VM and then can connect it to the VM in the VMWare settings, not ideal I know but might be worth trying.

    I wonder if Nessus is scanning for connected network devices on USB ports, and that was causing the issue after it was installed.
    Have a dig through your dmesg logs, might be helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    2022-Jul
    Posts
    3
    Thanks. I uninstalled Nessus, just in case that was causing the problem. I also did as you suggested and, after boot-up, I unplugged the USB keyboard and plugged it in again. That seems to have solved the problem for now. I will save a mirror copy of the VM, in case I have future problems, and I'll check the logs before and after re-installing Nessus. I appreciate your helpful suggestions.

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