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65 posts

Master Geek

# 181087 2-Oct-2015 01:03
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Got a bit of a strange problem here. My wife uses an Acer Aspire One netbook, and mostly connects to Facebook with it.

I have tried repeatedly to wean her off FB and onto better alternatives such as Twitter or Diaspora*, but she still insists on using it. The thing is, it will (very often) start responding strangely to keyboard input, or not responding at all to the keyboard. I have tried everything I can think of to resolve this problem, but it still persists.

I've tried:
* Ensuring it has the latest Firefox browser installed
* Disabling all add-ons for the Firefox browser
* Using a different web browser entirely
* Using an external USB keyboard

Every other website works fine, in different browser tabs, it only seems to affect Facebook. It happens when there's only one tab open in the browser as well as with multiple tabs. We're running Lubuntu v14.04 LTS (Trusty Tahr) as the OS and there doesn't seem to be any other problem with the computer, just this. It is practically the only thing my wife ever does with that netbook, and it seems strange that it is the only thing that is causing a problem.

I've also tried suggesting that she compose her posts / messages in Leafpad (the default text editor in Lubuntu) and copy/paste them into FB. This works as long as she doesn't try to use the keyboard to paste. She has to use the touchpad, right-click/paste. However, messages are committed using the [ENTER] key only in the instant chat dialog, so this workaround fails at that point.

Even this doesn't convince her to stop using FB. She naturally assumes that the problem is Firefox, or Lubuntu, or Linux, and we should all just go back to using WindBlows. I'm certain that this is not a Linux issue, it is a Facebook issue. I just don't know how to prove it, and, if possible, to fix it. I mean, c'mon, how am I supposed to fix Facebook, amirite? ;-)

Any suggestions of what might be causing this, how to resolve it, or at least how to reduce its impact, would be really appreciated.

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10989 posts

Uber Geek

  # 1398780 2-Oct-2015 13:42
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Could be a Firefox thing. Try Chromium.

65 posts

Master Geek

  # 1403173 9-Oct-2015 18:04
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Hi gzt, thanks for the reply. Unfortunately, I had already tried using a different browser to resolve this issue, as I mentioned in the OP.

> I've tried:
> * Ensuring it has the latest Firefox browser installed
> * Disabling all add-ons for the Firefox browser
> * Using a different web browser entirely
> * Using an external USB keyboard

I tried installing both Chromium and Midori on her netbook, but they still exhibit the same weird keyboard behaviour, in Facebook only. This is intermittent, but it doesn't seem to be related to available system memory (ie. Firefox's infamous memory leak problems) as it can occur soon after rebooting, just as it can happen after a long period of use.



10989 posts

Uber Geek

  # 1403189 9-Oct-2015 18:37
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I had sort of kind of similar symptoms long time ago due to bad network and some page elements missing load. I suspected it was a weird router issue and ignored it, so maybe go conservative with network drivers and maybe try it out elsewhere network as a control before that.

Maybe this should move to Linux forum.

65 posts

Master Geek

  # 1403691 11-Oct-2015 04:30
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Hi gzt, thanks again for the reply.

> due to bad network ... weird router issue

Thanks, this prompted me to check her /etc/hosts file, just in case something had hijacked her connections to Facebook. Unfortunately it wasn't as simple as that. Still looking.

> try it out elsewhere

That's a good suggestion. She never uses that netbook anywhere other than at home. We'll give it a go at some time, at a trusted friend or family member's place. Not a great idea to authenticate (even to FB) from a public WiFi.

> Maybe this should move to Linux forum.

I did struggle deciding where to put this, but figured it was related only to FB, not to the underlying OS. But maybe someone from the Linux forums would be better able to help with a fix/workaround?

Again, thanks for your help.

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