Author Topic: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality - rfkill permissions workaround  (Read 2713 times)

Offline hofy

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Hello there,

I seem to have lost the Fn key wifi hard switch functionality. I can still turn it off/on by clicking on the applet, and ticking/unticking Wifi. Still, the key shortcut was handy. Any way to bring it back? I'm positive it worked just until a while ago. An update messed it up maybe? Thanks for advice :)

inxi -Fz:
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« Last Edit: July 22, 2019, 05:33:25 am by hofy »

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2018, 08:25:34 am »
If you used to press say Fn+F3 .. does now just pressing F3 on its own toggle wireless on/off ?

This is much more likely to be a hardware or BIOS issue because those special keys are likely not controlled by the OS .. ie. they're independent of the OS, so you can toggle them even before an IS is loaded.

In the BIOS there's an option to require the use of the Fn key or not .. maybe toggle that to where you don't require the Fn key, save the BIOS settings and exit the BIOS .. then go back in and change it back, save and exit again.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2018, 08:30:30 am by PCNetSpec »
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Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2018, 07:42:09 am »
I can tell you it is OS dependent as I have also Windowz in a dualboot setup and the Fn+f3 key works there normally. Also I have another netbook where I installed peppermint in a dualboot setup with windows, but I couldn't turn the wifi off at all in P7, whereas under Windowz it worked no problem.

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2018, 09:51:28 am »
If it worked until recently, have you tried booting an earlier kernel ?
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Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #4 on: February 19, 2018, 10:12:17 am »
Tried now, earlier kernel works. So it's the new one.

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2018, 10:14:25 am »
which kernel does it work in ?
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Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2018, 01:53:17 am »
4.10 worked. 4.13 doesn't.

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2018, 05:51:40 am »
Well your options then are to either:-

a) Set the 4.10 kernel as the default .. bearing in mind 4.10 is NOT receiving the Meltdown/Spectre patches (or any other updates)

b) Live with it

c) See if a more recent kernel works .. taking care to check it's been patched against Meltdown/Spectre.

d) Revert the HWE changes, thereby downgrading to the 4.4 kernel series.
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Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2019, 03:45:12 am »
I should add the solution I employed eventually:

e) map new keyboard shortcuts with commands
Code: [Select]
rfkill block #interfacenumber
Code: [Select]
rfkill unblock #interfacenumber

Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost [solved]
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2019, 03:09:21 am »
Couldn't resist to install Pep 10 and the problem sadly persists. What is worse, mapping the keyboard shortcuts with rfkill no longer works as a workaround either. I fiddled with rfkill permissions and it worked - but only until reboot.

So is there a simpler solution, or how do I change the permissions properly and persistently?

thanks :)

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost [solved]
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2019, 04:18:18 am »
Let's start with the output from:
Code: [Select]
lspci -vnn | grep -i net
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Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost [solved]
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2019, 06:36:05 am »
$ lspci -vnn | grep -i net
01:00.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Qualcomm Atheros AR8151 v2.0 Gigabit Ethernet [1969:1083] (rev c0)
   Subsystem: Acer Incorporated [ALI] AR8151 v2.0 Gigabit Ethernet [1025:0698]
02:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Broadcom Inc. and subsidiaries BCM4313 802.11bgn Wireless Network Adapter [14e4:4727] (rev 01)
   Subsystem: Foxconn International, Inc. BCM4313 802.11bgn Wireless Network Adapter [105b:e042]

I'm guessing Atheros is the USB dongle I'm using for better reception.

Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost [solved]
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2019, 02:04:57 pm »
No, the Atheros is the wired network adapater .. USB devices aren't listed by lspci.

Can you post the output from
Code: [Select]
lsmodand
Code: [Select]
rfkill list
« Last Edit: July 01, 2019, 02:12:24 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline hofy

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Re: Fn key wifi hard switch functionality lost [solved]
« Reply #13 on: July 13, 2019, 02:25:52 pm »
hofy@hofy-EasyNote ~ $ lsmod
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hofy@hofy-EasyNote ~ $ rfkill list
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[close]

edit: It works (a mapped keyboard shortcut) if I change rfkill permission 'everybody' from 'read only' to 'read and write'. How do I do this properly so the change is persistent?
thanks

EDIT2:
I changed the 'all users' permission and added 'write' by:
Code: [Select]
sudo chmod a+w /dev/rfkillthus rendering the workaround with a custom keyboard shortcut (mentioned earlier in this thread) viable again. how to make it persistent?
« Last Edit: July 22, 2019, 05:34:11 am by hofy »