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i remotely connect to my Virtual Machine Manager thru VNC client (MobaXTerm) to TightVNC (on the Debian host) on Win10. however, when i spin up a vm, the guest does not respond to any keyboard or mouse input. only the direcly-connected-to-server USB keyboard can be redirected. in the machine config, i've added the Avocent USB Composite Device to USB Hardware, i've tried adding additional USB redirects, but to no avail.

i've seen that there are several posts on similar issues, none of which provided anything useful; probably because they are working directly on the machine. i have no such luxury down the line. i need to be able to manage this from my Win10 machine remotely, thus the VNC wrinkle... which, to my mind, shouldn't be much of a wrinkle at all.

so flow-wise, it looks like this:

+-------+            +---------------------------+
|       |            |                   +----+  |
| win10 | --(VNC)--> | VMhost (VMM)  --> | VM |  |
|       |            |   Debian11        +----+  |
+-------+            +---------------------------+

so how do i get my inputs to flow down to the VM at the end? i apologize if i am missing something simple, because this seems a pretty simple setup... :P

EDIT: i read a couple posts indicating that the native TightVNC should be replaced with TigerVNC due to the way QEMU remaps key inputs...? is this valid? i'd hate to tear it out only to introduce more issues.

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  • This is a bit confusing. qemu has its own VNC server built-in; you don't need TightVNC or TigerVNC or any VNC server at all on the VM host. Also, it's not clear to me what you mean by directly-connected-to-server USB keyboard - where is this keyboard connected? I run Debian 10 with plenty of VMs and have no problem accessing the VMs' consoles with a VNC client on my Win10 PC (however, I use the tightVNC client on the PC). Jun 9, 2023 at 1:26
  • in the past, i've had similar experience. but for this server, installing TigerVNC was the ticket. *shrug* and directly-connected meant the keyboard was physically connected to the server itself, not through KVM.
    – WhiteRau
    Jul 25, 2023 at 13:40

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