iDRAC6 Console VNC incompatibility??

Chuck Anderson cra at WPI.EDU
Tue Sep 6 17:30:33 CDT 2011

The iDRAC6's KVM viewer is OEM from Avocent, but Dell bastardized it
somewhat.  One of the things they did is make it use Linux keyboard
scancodes instead of the standard X11 keysyms.  This causes all sorts
of bizarre/broken behavior when you aren't sitting in front of an
actual Linux console keyboard, such as your VNC case.  See here for
the details and a possible fix:

On Tue, Jun 21, 2011 at 06:03:33PM -0700, karasline at wrote:
> It would appear that when the console is running within the VNC environment the keystrokes are being misinterpreted.  This same behavior is consistent across 3 different iDRAC6's in that the same misinterpretation is exhibited, i.e. to realize a "y", one must type a "[", a "<CR>" is a "/".  This is especially painful when the console has a password protected screensaver running.  The iDRAC6 works fine when not running within the VNC environment.  However, as stated previously, the iDRAC5 works regardless whether or not it's within a VNC environment.
> To: linux-poweredge at
> Date: Tuesday, June 21, 2011, 12:15 PM
> I have an iDRAC6 on a R610. On a different server within a VNC window, I run firefox.  From firefox running in the VNC, I can log into the iDRAC6, launch the console, but I can't get any of of my keyboard entries to be recognized by the console.  I can use the macro pull downs to input CTRL-Enter, CTRL-Alt-Del, etc. but I can't get the any of the key strokes friom the keyboard to be seen by the console.  FWIW, this same VNC interface setup works perfectly on an iDRAC5 console running in a 2950.

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