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I'm using Alpine Linux with the following bluetooth related packages installed:

bluez-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-btmgmt-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-btmon-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-doc-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-firmware-1.2-r1 x86_64 {bluez-firmware} (GPL-2.0-or-later) [installed]
bluez-hid2hci-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-libs-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-openrc-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
bluez-plugins-5.68-r1 x86_64 {bluez} (GPL-2.0-or-later AND BSD-2-Clause AND MIT) [installed]
pipewire-spa-bluez-0.3.74-r0 x86_64 {pipewire} (LGPL-2.1-or-later) [installed]

The bluetooth service is running and I'm also able to connect and use my bluetooth headphones using the command line utility bluetoothctl.

However, when it comes to HID devices (keyboard and mouse) they can be paired, connected and trusted but do not create any input when pressing a key or mouse movement.

To be specific the bluetooth connection of my keyboard shows:

device CE:FE:50:FA:F7:83 (random)
    Name: TEX-BLE-1
    Alias: TEX-BLE-1
    Appearance: 0x03c1 (961)
    Icon: input-keyboard
    Paired: yes
    Bonded: yes
    Trusted: yes
    Blocked: no
    Connected: yes
    LegacyPairing: no
    UUID: Generic Access Profile    (00001800-0000-1000-8000-00805f9b34fb)
    UUID: Generic Attribute Profile (00001801-0000-1000-8000-00805f9b34fb)
    UUID: Device Information        (0000180a-0000-1000-8000-00805f9b34fb)
    UUID: Battery Service           (0000180f-0000-1000-8000-00805f9b34fb)
    UUID: Human Interface Device    (00001812-0000-1000-8000-00805f9b34fb)
    Modalias: usb:v04D9p2521d0000
    Battery Percentage: 0x63 (99)

However absolutely no key registers when pressed. I tried the same keyboard and the mouse on a fresh install of Ubuntu where it works. They keyboard also works flawlessly via its USB-C connection. I'm guessing that I'm missing a package or a specific configuration option of the Bluetooth stack.

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  • Do non-bluetooth keyboards and mice work? Are you using seatd for seat management? What WM or compositor are you using?
    – WhyNotHugo
    Aug 10, 2023 at 12:43
  • Non-Bluetooth keyboards work. The internal Notebook keyboard (ThinkPad T460s) as well as mentioned keyboard via USB-C. I'm using seatd for seat managment and start (and use) sway via exec dbus-run-session -- sway . I also followed all of the steps in wiki.alpinelinux.org/wiki/Bluetooth especially setting up udev.
    – Invarianz
    Aug 10, 2023 at 13:51

1 Answer 1

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After a lot of trial and error I was going through the Bluetooth guide at https://wiki.alpinelinux.org/wiki/Bluetooth again and found the error. As mentioned at the bottom of the guide I installed hidapi and loaded the uhid kernel module.

apk add hidapi
modprobe uhid

After that I removed the keyboard from bluetoothctl and paired it again. Now keys register. To make the changes permanent I added the module uhid to /etc/modules.

Now the keyboard works even after a restart.

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  • Odd, I don't have this in /etc/modules but the hid module is loaded. I wonder what's triggering it to load automatically. Do you have eudev enabled?
    – WhyNotHugo
    Aug 10, 2023 at 17:22
  • Yes eudev is enabled. However, it did not load the uhid module automatically. I needed to manually add it to /etc/modules. I think this makes sense since it is not part of the default install but needs the hidapi package. The hid module is also loaded automatically for me.
    – Invarianz
    Aug 10, 2023 at 17:41

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