Keyboard failures

I had a strange feeling about that 600m, and now my concern has been validated: It’s back, and with crippling keyboard issues.

It didn’t last long. My neighbor was quite happy with it as a replacement for the Pavilion, but it was less than a month before pressing certain keys caused the entire keyboard to lock, random gibberish to appear on the screen, or for windows to bounce around uncontrollably as if possessed.

The issue is 100 percent obviously hardware related. It’s about five keys in vertical line — the 1, Tab, q, a and z keys on a standard US keyboard, which says to me that the part of the funny little grid that monitors that particular row has gone south.

The machine as a history of motherboard issues, but I’m fairly certain this is the keyboard alone that is misbehaving. And unfortunately, I checked with the original owners and they said it has a history of keyboard problems as well — some as recent as six months ago, when the current keyboard was installed as a repair.

Needless to say I refunded my neighbor, and I took back the machine — call it customer service, I guess. My plan at this point is … rather sketchy. Under other circumstances I might replace the keyboard, but shipping to Japan for that part might be cost-ineffective. And reselling it locally isn’t an option, since the market has no place for non-Japanese keyboards (desktops are a different story).

My best plan at this point is to use it as a file server and download client, much like the old Thinkpad used to do. It’s overkill in that role, but until I can figure out exactly how and what I want to achieve with it, it’s a worthy function.

I’ve already set up nfs and ssh, and of course with the latter in place, there’s nothing that I need the standing keyboard for at all. Score another one for ssh.

Next stop is to put rtorrent and maybe fttps on there, and then stash it in the closet with an extension cord and a few specific power settings. Once I have the whole thing in place, I’ll put up a howto or at least a case-in-point page, maybe with a photo or two. Everybody loves a picture. ;)

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May 6, 2011
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