[nSLUG] Serial drivers for Ubuntu 10.04?

Joel Maxuel j.maxuel at gmail.com
Thu Jan 31 14:21:41 AST 2013

This sounded familiar, so I did a quick check in the archives.  Were
you able to get your PC-TRAC model 9016 to work?

Given the previous suggestions (January 1st to 2nd), I am curious if
Ubuntu supports serial devices out of the box.  I would test this with
something other than Xorg, such as installing GPM interface for the
console.  This would be an (add sudo as necessary):

apt-get install gpm

I'm assuming after installation a conf file /etc/gpm.conf would show
up to specify serial (such as /dev/ttyS0).  If not, there would be a
README (or more) in /usr/share/doc/gpm/

Then you can test with the following command:


Besides GPM, you can try grabbing data from your serial port, just
search the archives for "hamster wheel".  If you can prove that the OS
is picking up events from the trackball, you would be in better shape
when tiem to troubleshoot Xorg.

Hope this helps.

Joel Maxuel

"One should strive to achieve, not sit in bitter regret."
 - Ronan Harris / Mark Jackson

On Thu, Jan 31, 2013 at 1:57 PM, Trina Hanson <trina.hanson79 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hello,
> I am trying to get a serial Kensington 64215 Expert 4 button Trackball up
> and running with Ubuntu 10.04 with no luck.  I have spent literately days
> online trying a few things, with no success.
> The first thing I tired was to create a file called xorg.conf (see below for
> the code that I used) and placed it etc/X11.  Once the file was placed in
> the folder and I rebooted the computer the Ubuntu splash screen came up and
> then slowly faded away.  I had to boot with a Live CD and then was able to
> delete the file and rebooted the computer and it booted fine this time.
> Section "InputDevice"
>        Identifier      "Kensington Expert Mouse"
>        Driver          "mouse"
>        Option          "Protocol"      "ThinkingMouse"
>        Option          "Device"        "/dev/ttyS0"
>        Option          "CorePointer"
>        Option          "Emulate3Buttons"       "true"
>        Option          "Buttons"       "4"
> EndSection
> Then I found code that was suggested to name it 10-mouse.fdi (see the code
> below) and place it in /etc/hal/fdi/policy.  I rebooted the computer and the
> computer booted up this time, but the serial trackball would not work.
> <?xml version='1.0' encoding='UTF-8'?>
> <deviceinfo version='0.2'>
>   <device>
>     <match key='info.capabilities' contains='input.mouse'>
>       <merge key='input.x11_driver' type='string'>mouse</merge>
>       <merge key="input.x11_options.Device" type="string">/dev/ttyS0</merge>
>       <merge key="input.x11_options.Protocol"
> type="string">ThinkingMouse</merge>
>       <merge key="input.x11_options.Emulate3Buttons"
> type="string">false</merge>
>       <merge key="input.x11_options.CorePointer" type="string">On</merge>
>       <merge key="input.x11_options.Buttons" type="string">4</merge>
>       <merge key="input.x11_options.ButtonMapping" type="string">1 2 3
> 4</merge>
>     </match>
>   </device>
> </deviceinfo>
> I then found a file in /usr/share/hal/fdi/policy/10osvendor called
> 10-input-policy.fdi.  I then used the code above to replace the code that
> was in that file and deleted the file (10-mouse.fdi) in /etc/hal/fdi/policy
> and rebooted the computer and again the computer booted fine, but the
> trackball was still unresponsive.
> I have also tried using the following commands in a terminal window:
> sudo apt-get install inputattach
> inputattach -<mouse type> /path/to/serial/device
> I replaced "<mouse type>" with Microsoft, as Kensington did not appear in
> man inputattach, and used /dev/ttyS0 to replace "/path/to/serial/device",
> again with no success.
> Any and all ideas would be greatly appreciated.
> Thank you,
> Trina
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