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    • #1566281
      Andrew Brehm
      Participant
      Member Points: 456
      Rank: 2

      I just encountered an annoying issue.

      When trying to log onto Windows Server Core via ILO using a local account, it is impossible to type a backslash if the server’s keyboard layout is too foreign.

      In my case it’s a Swiss keyboard layout. Swiss keyboards apparently have a key between z and left-shift that (in combination with alt-gr, another special key on the Swiss keyboard) types \. My American keyboard doesn’t have that key.

      I tried:

      1. Changing the keyboard layout in the console. This fails because ILO does not, apparently, send shift-alt through to the server.

      2. Typing left-alt and 9 and 2 on the numberpad to get ASCII \. This fails because Server Core apprently doesn’t support this handy input method. (It acts as if I pressed return.)

      3. Using / instead of \.

      4. Using @servername instead of servername\. (Obviously this didn’t work.)

      5. Using ILO hotkeys, which apparently cannot send foreign keycodes either. \ becomes $ (because a Swiss keyboard has $ where an American has \).

      6. Calling a colleague with a Swiss keyboard. That worked, but is not practical at all hours.

      How did HPE think this should work? What am I overlooking?

    • #1566290
      Michael Pietroforte
      Keymaster
      Member Points: 38,575
      Author of the year 2018
      Rank: 4

      If I remember right, you have to specify the keyboard layout when you install the server, but I guess the real problem is ILO here. You probably won’t have a problem logon physically with different keyboards.

      So if you have physical access, you can logon and then change the keyboard layout.

      I never tried this, but perhaps you can connect to the server via PowerShell remoting and then change the keyboard layout.

      • #1567233
        Andrew Brehm
        Participant
        Member Points: 456
        Rank: 2

        If I could connect via PowerShell remoting, I wouldn’t need to use the ILO.

        The company would also object to me changing the system’s general keyboard layout for the login screen (which is the default keyboard layout for all users).

        “So if you have physical access, you can logon and then change the keyboard layout.”

        If I had physical access, I also wouldn’t need to to use the ILO. However, I now assume I would have the same issue logging on. If logging in requires me to type a Swiss
        “\” and my keyboard doesn’t have that key, I won’t be able to logon. So I think the issue is really with Windows Server and not with ILO.

        Windows Server Desktop allows changing the keyboard layout on the login screen, Windows Server Core does not. I really don’t know how MSFT imagined this should work.

        (I think perhaps they imagine a world where different keyboard layouts don’t exist, just like they imagine a world in which every server everywhere is always connected to the Internet and hence PowerShell modules don’t have to come with help files because they can be downloaded at will, in MSFT-land.)

         

        • #1567241
          Michael Pietroforte
          Keymaster
          Member Points: 38,575
          Author of the year 2018
          Rank: 4

          I doubt that Microsoft’s engineers imagined anything. It is a special case and Microsoft only cares about everything that affects the masses. Server Core is full of inconsistencies because transforming a GUI OS into a CLI OS was a silly idea from the start. You encountered one of the countless cases where this becam apparent.

          Why don’t you get yourself a Swiss keyboard?

        • #1568414
          Andrew Brehm
          Participant
          Member Points: 456
          Rank: 2

          I think switching keyboards around based on the “nationality” of the server currently using is stupid.

          Besides, it’s not an option for our team in Singapore who have no access to Swiss keyboards but do (apparently) have a need to send a keyboard code produces by one to Swiss servers.

          I could solve the problem by having a US, a German, a French and a Swiss keyboard ready at my desk. Or perhaps there is a superkeyboard available somewhere that can send all sorts of international codes?

           

        • #1568415
          Michael Pietroforte
          Keymaster
          Member Points: 38,575
          Author of the year 2018
          Rank: 4

          I don’t think that there is a Swiss keyboard since they speak German, Italian and French. So you need to figure out which language they used for the server.

          I somehow doubt that the ALT codes don’t work on Server Core because it is not related to the GUI.

          Did you enable Num Lock on your keyboard? The ALT codes might also be disabled. Check this out.

          Another option you have is to use the On-Screen Keyboard.

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