Keyboard Firmware Updates

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    Doc Davluz

    For Linux, for a quite standard mechanic to update firmwares, you can get a look at https://github.com/fwupd/fwupd. It's super simple for the enduser to update his firmwares through this tool through the fwupdmgr command. You can either store your firmware on https://fwupd.org/ or on your own repository as remote repositories are configurables.

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    Doc Davluz

    One more note, why don't you use QMK firmware: https://qmk.fm/ which is open source and already power number of keyboards?

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    Martin

    I've bought two of those keyboard (one for job, one for home) like 1 or 2 years ago and with the new Firmware update on both Win10 machines, when I boot up the PC I have to disconnect/reconnect the USB cable at the login screen, to make the keyboard work kind of annoying. 

    Anyone else having this issue ? 

     

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    David

    Doc Davluz

    There are quite a few reasons why we don't/can't/won't use QMK and they don't really have anything to do with the firmware itself. That being said for the people that really want to use QMK there are cool tools like this; https://github.com/qmk/qmk_firmware/tree/master/keyboards/converter/usb_usb 

    Martin 

    Can you let me know if this issue is consistent on both of your keyboards? I'm willing to bet the computer at your work will exhibit this behavior and the one at your home will not, but it would be great to know. I've been trying to track down a weird "I have to unplug then replug for it to initialize" bug for a handful of people, although even that is not consistent, as some it only happens on wake from sleep, some it happens only on cold boot, some it happens where it only affects the indicator lights. I've been trying to track it down but from all of my personal testing I haven't been able to reproduce this despite a lot of different computers, operating systems, etc. I've only been able to go off reports from a small handful of customers. I believe it has something to do with certain motherboards not playing nice with our firmware, but I haven't found a consistent pattern among their hardware to further isolate. If you can please give me your system specs (specifically which motherboard you're using, OS version) it would help to fix this elusive bug. Thank you! 

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    Martin

    David, what you said really got into me since I was convinced that it did it on both home and work PCs, but I admit not closing often my work PC really often, so I tried more intensive tests and here are the results for you:

    1. I was not able to reproduce the "unplug/plug to initialize" on my work PC, I tried with both keyboards closing and opening the PC often.
    2. On the other hand I was able to reproduce it almost (though not always) all my tries with both of my keyboards on my home PC.
    3. Since my USB cable is not long enough to run through the back of my PC case, I'm using a USB hub, so I tried plugging it in the front USB port of my home PC with both of my keyboard and indeed the problem still occurs on almost all of my tries, so the USB Hub doesn't seem to be the problem.

    Conclusions:

    Since I can reproduce it with both keyboards on the home PC but can't reproduce it with any of them on my work PC, I conclude that it has something to do with the hardware or OS (since my home is Win10 and work is Win7). So to help further, I'm available to help you try anything, uploading a test firmware, provide any log files, free of charge if this can help you out !!

    Here are the specs of my PC:
    Motherboard: ASRock  Z87-Pro from ASUSTek
    CPU: i7-4770K + stock fan
    RAM: DDR3: Corsair vengence 2 pairs of 8GB => 16GB
    Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
    Drives:

    • Samsung 840 Evo Series 120GB => OS
    • Samsung 850 Evo Series 250GB => Data

    OS: Windows 10 x64, v1909

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    David

    Martin

    My apologies for the delay, we're currently overwhelmed quite a bit with order volume. 

    Thank you for the detailed information. I'm working with a few customers right now in figuring out what this issue is, but I believe we are narrowing it down more and more to something windows related. I can't seem to find any hardware myself that causes this issue (I have tested so far on 13+ different systems at this point, none of which exhibit any of these issues no matter what I try). I am purchasing system components at the moment to try and replicate this issue that a customer is having in the hopes that I can have something here that I can reproduce and test on. 

    I do a have a lead on that windows setting, but I will have to get more feedback before I'll have you messing around with your settings, but it would be nice to confirm from those reports after I get a bit more info. 

    Thank you!

     

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    Jonathan Haddock

    Hi David,

    I've had this problem on and off, and in fact I think it was you that I was liaising with late last year about this problem.  Since receiving my replacement keyboard the problem persists, so I wanted to provide some data here to help crowd source and patterns.

    The issue occurs on all of my devices and not just with Windows.  Sometimes the keyboard won't initialise.  Other times I'll have no lights.  I've also noticed that sometimes the keyboard lights are fine but then when the laptop goes to sleep the lights stop working after it wakes up.

    Laptop one - Toshiba Satellite Pro c50, Windows 10 Pro

    Laptop two - HP Probook 450 G6, Windows 10 Pro

    Laptop three - Novatech NNB-075, NixOS Linux

    Desktop one - Gigabyte G1.Guerrilla motherboard

    I have tried going through a USB 3 hub with the laptops and the problem exists then too.

    Hope that helps.

     

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    David

    Jonathan Haddock

    Thank you for the information, I have a test rig coming in the hopes I can replicate this very soon. It may not be specifically windows related, but something in the initialization when the OS loads. Of all the cases I have heard BIOS operation or any pre-installation environment still functions with the keyboard, so something is happening when the keyboard drivers load in the OS, can you confirm? 

    Also, is this only wake from sleep, or cold boot, or restart as well? I've heard some cases where this is only wake from sleep, while others it is only on boot. 

    99% of the cases I have seen, loading V2.5 firmware fixes this issue, it's something in the V3 firmware that is causing this, but again only seemingly on certain hardware (I've now tested on 13 computers personally, and I cannot replicate). As soon as I can get a piece of hardware that I can consistently replicate the issue on, then we will able to fix it.  

    Thank you very much for your help. 

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    David

    Martin Jonathan Haddock

    I just built a new computer attempting to emulate a customer's rig that I was working with in trying to nail this bug down, but it works just fine for my machine using the same components that he had. I will be testing more on the Windows side, although I've heard reports that this issue has been seen on some Linux machines, so I don't know how much of it is affected by the OS or not (reports say seemingly not at all). I have tried with the same hardware as a customer that was showing this issue and I cannot reproduce, that makes me think that it's not hardware related but software, however I'm not sure why it would be present on both Linux and Windows. Of all the reports it seems like the keyboard "cuts out" when the OS is loading, the keyboard works fine in the BIOS and anything pre-os. Can you guys confirm that? 

    Martin - You said that your work machine is fine, but your home machine is showing this bug. I'm wondering if you were willing to try installing Win 7 on your home machine just to test? I think this would provide some insight. I understand if that is not feasible for you. To me if the error occurred this would point more towards a hardware conflict (although still can't rule it out). 

    Is anyone is willing to send me their computer to test on? Sadly, that's where I'm at right now. 

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    Martin

    Yeah I think I have an old 80GB HDD laying around I can use to install win7 and I can also test if all works fine in BIOS and such. More on that in the next few days. I'm not ready to send my PC though it is a long way from Canada..

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    Martin

    I did not try yet with Win7, but I had some really weird behavior with the BIOS:

    - Sometimes, I can entrer the BIOS using F2 or DEL and all is fine and then Windows usually sees it no need to unplug
    - Sometimes, I can enter the BIOS, but then nothing, no keys are working, I must plug/unplug from then windows usually sees it
    - Sometimes, I can't even enter the BIOS nor Windows, I have to plug\unplug.

     

     

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    Jonathan Haddock

    Hi David,

    I remain of the opinion this is a keyboard firmware issue, or an issue where the controller in the keyboard either crashes during initialisation or just doesn't boot.  There's also what looks like a firmware issue in regards controlling the lights - as I type now I have no lights showing for caps, num lock or scroll / layer.  If I unplug the keyboard and reconnect the lights come back on (just confirmed).  Martin do you see the same behaviour?

    My current DIP switch configuration has all switches in the off position.

    I have seen the keyboard:

    • Fail to initialise at all, preventing access to BIOS or operating whatsoever
    • Appear operational for BIOS and the beginning of the OS load, but then be non-functional once the OS has loaded
    • Become unresponsive after the computer has gone to sleep
    • Be unresponsive on cold boot or after a reboot

    Unfortunately I can't send you any of my devices (I need them for work) and it'd be rather cost prohibitive too given I'm in the UK.

    Is there any form of JTAG / serial / debug interface on the keyboard that can send device initialisation output to another device?  I think it's fair to say this is not an OS problem, and likely not a computer hardware problem either given the wide variety of devices this seems to happen on (all of mine so far - 5 devices of different manufacturer).

    I'm conscious this firmware thread has been somewhat hijacked by this troubleshooting.  Would it be more appropriate for David, Martin and I to correspond by email?  I'm happy for my address to be shared with Martin if that's the best course of action.

    Many thanks,

    Jonathan

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    Martin

    I agree with Jonathan we should move this conversation I'm willing to give my email address if need be.

    About the lights, yes, this is messed up. When I connect the keyboard ligths are fine but at a certain point they disappear. I'm not sure about the conditions though. That happens on both of my keyboards whether on my job Win7 pc and my home Win10 pc.

    I also agree with Jonathan since we can see those bevior in the BIOS pretty sure we can rule out Windows...

    Also, throwing a random idea here if you cannot locate the problem on initialization could it be coming from shuting down inappropriately thus leading to a crash at some point during initialization ?

    I'm saying that since when I did tests and swap between both of my keyboards the first try always seems fine...

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    David

    Martin Jonathan Haddock

    Please email our main support email (info@wasdkeyboards.com) and I can set up a thread there. 

    Thank you. 

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    David Njagi

    hi, i was told that my order was put on hold becuase your servers had an issue withe the svg file i used in the builder, i was told to send you guys the svg file which i did last night, the email back said it was being reviewed by your support staff, was wondering if there is any follow up on my order

     

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    Andrew Alsup

    Does the latest update fix the issue where the keyboard will refuse to turn on at boot? If so I am so happy.

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    David

    Andrew Alsup

    If you have SW3 "on" and you're having issues on Windows or Linux where when you restart or wake from sleep and the keyboard is not initializing, you can either set SW3 "off" or simply update to 0.17 of the firmware! Thanks. 

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    Andrew Alsup

    Any plans to add a setting for the backlight to automatically turn off after 10 minutes of inactivity? Would love this for when I go to bed with the computer still on across the room. Currently I need to manually turn the backlight on and off each day.

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    David

    Andrew Alsup

    We don't have any plans currently for this feature, this is the first I'm hearing of a request like this so I'm not sure how useful this will be for most users? I will bring this up as a possible addition, thank you! 

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    Stephen Thoms

    Yes I would love for the keyboard back light to turn off after 10 minutes or so. I currently put a cloth over it.

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    h49yj8cpbfq3okrb5txem9c55954w63n

    Hi David,

    I had previously asked about a backlight timeout feature in 2019-09 and was told that this request would be passed on by Paige.

    In a support email thread with yourself (thanks very much again!) I had asked about a configurable backlight timeout feature again in 2020-07.

    This would be an incredibly useful feature which would make the CODE keyboard perfect for my use case. Many laptops have e.g. 15 second timeout for backlighting and this was something I had naively expected from the CODE keyboards.

    Is there somewhere that this feature request can be tracked and voted in favour for?

    Thanks very much!

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    David

    Hello, 

    Can you let me know your name, or do you have the ticket number from that request? I'd like to check back on that email you referenced, this is the first of my knowledge of a request for this feature. 

    I have emailed our devs about adding this feature, you are referencing 15 seconds, while Stephen is wanting 10 minutes, I'd hate to implement it for 10 minutes and have that not be useful. Can you let me know a use case that you're wanting a 15 second timeout? 

    I can imagine a scenario where you want to leave your computer on but backlighting off (if you sleep in a room with your computer on - although typically a light timeout (or sleep timer) would be more for conserving energy) I think most people just put their computer to sleep when not using it which will usually cut power to the USB ports and shut off the backlighting of the keyboard. 

    Just trying to gauge the range of usefulness, would an hour timeout be too long or not enough for some use cases? 

    Thanks! 

     

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    Stephen Thoms

    Both a 10 minute or 15 second timeout would work for me. 

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    Andrew Alsup

    15 seconds would be too short for me. I would only want it to trigger when I'm not using it. Maybe 5 minutes to be comfortable.

     

    Glad to see the attention this topic is getting!

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    Stephen Thoms

    My keyboard is connected to a hub which is connected via HDMI to the laptop. Which is why I suspect the LED backlighting does not turn when Laptop goes to sleep.

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    Maurizio Nervo

    Hi there,

    I updated from 15 to 17 on a Windows 10 PC and after a shutdown the keyboard LEDs gets freezed: e.g. if NumLock is is lit it stays lit when the PC is off (the keyb is still powered through STDBY_USB ) and when i turn on the machine the keyboard works, but the LEDs are freezed; if i press Caps or NumLock the keyb state changes, but no changes on the LEDs.

    If you need more info, ask me...

     

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    David

    Stephen Thoms - can you let me know which model of hub you're using? I've never seen one with HDMI as the source of connection, type-c yes, USB yes, but HDMI? I suppose it's technically possible, just never seen one before. Thanks. 

    Maurizio Nervo

    Let me know if you're using a dock/hub, what are your current dipswitch settings? Do you have another port you can try that does power cycle with your computer rebooting? 

    Also did you reset the keyboard after flashing the firmware? (SW4 on)

    Please let me know, thanks. 

     

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    Maurizio Nervo

    David the kbd is attached directly at a PC host port; I noticed that the issue is not strictly related to PC turnoff, the LEDs hang after some random time (2/4 hours or so), regardless of the PC power state. Dipswitch configuration is in default state (all OFF).

    I didn't reset the kyb through SW4, because I have several macros recorded... If you think it's mandatory, I'll do and reprogram (sigh!) all the macros. As I said, a SW for programming the macros on the PC (even with an hex editor) and then downloading like a FW, would be very useful in such situations!

     

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    David

    Maurizio Nervo

    V17 of the firmware only fixes the bug created by using SW3 in the 'on' position, so if you weren't using the scroll lock LED toggle (SW3 off to begin with), then upgrading the firmware wouldn't fix the issue you're currently having. 

    At this time I don't believe the issue you are having pertains to the firmware as I haven't heard any other customers with this particular issue, so please open a support ticket with us (info@wasdkeyboards.com) and I further troubleshoot with you in trying to figure out the cause. 

    It is much more convenient to program using software, but there are pros and cons to software vs hardware solutions. I always recommend using software when applicable for ease of programming (something like AHK or Karabiner) but if you want the programming solely on the keyboard and require that, then setting it up on the board will be better (or even necessary). I will ask our devs if it's possible to create a dump file for config loading/unloading. 

    Thank you. 

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    Maurizio Nervo

    David

    Thanks for the support.

    I indeed use AHK, but I still have some macros hardwired on the keyboard, in order to be able to use them in case the OS wont start or starts up in maintenance mode, some software don't react well with AHK and also sometimes I use the kbd with Linux boxes and Rasps, so I need them out of the box.

    The strange behavior has started right after the firmware upgrade form 15 to 17, nothing else has changed in my system, and it persists even exchanging USB ports.

    I also noticed some missing keystrokes... I will try a reset and tell you if it resolves the issue, if not I'll open a support ticket as suggested.

    Thanks.

     

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