Installing an encrypted system fails when using a USB keyboard


I tried to install the latest version of Neon on a new hard drive, choosing to encrypt the hole system.

After installation I discovered that I could not enter the chosen password. I already read about problems that occur when keyboard layouts other than English are used, so I made double sure to use only ASCII characters and characters that would not switch positions on different keyboards for my password.

But now I also had to discover that my USB keyboard doesn’t work, because the USB driver is not included in the standard kernel. Luckily, my keyboard can be adapted to be used as an ancient PS/2 keyboard as well, but that will lead to other troubles later, like all the special media keys don’t work.

I know that some machines offer the possibility to switch to some kind of legacy mode for booting in BIOS, but sadly that option is not available at the targeted machine, and it is very inconvenient to adapt the keyboard to PS/2 just for booting every time. What options do I have to install an encrypted system under these circumstances?

Thanks in advance!

It should not require a driver if it follows HID standards, except for non-standard keys like for macros. The keyboard should be handled by the bios until it hands it over to the OS, which should not happen until after you enter your password on an encrypted system. Do you have secure boot enabled? I am wondering if its missing a signature key. Normally it would prompt for that though.

I managed to get the keyboard working during GRUB boot. The “legacy” option in the BIOS was very hard to find, I must have overlooked it at least dozens of times. :frowning:

But there’s still the problem of using the right keyboard layout: when I choose a password for encryption during setup, keyboard layout is set to German, when GRUB asks for the password, it uses English. Of course, I could use a password that will be the same in both layouts, but that would restrict me to using only letters and numbers, because these characters are the only one that are positioned on the same physical key in both layouts. I would not be able to use non alphanumerical characters.

So I need to teach GRUB to use German keyboard layout. How do I do this?

Or is there another solution for this problem?

Seems it cannot be done, but this article is a bit old. You might be stuck with a US layout until after you enter your encryption password.

I would call this a security issue, that needs to be fixed in GRUB, because it limits your password to a very tiny set of characters: those that can be found on every keyboard layout at the same position and that you will be able to remember as well!