What is wrong with the Ctrl-key in Gnome?

Rocky Linux 9.1 Gnome.

I noticed something odd yesterday when I installed the Steam client (with a flatpak) and Team Fortress 2, and the Ctrl-key (=crouch) was not working within the game. Instead I got a pulsating blue ball on the screen.

Today I noticed on the desktop that pushing the Ctrl-key does indeed create such blue ball to where the mouse pointer is. Is this some kind of feature to locate where the mouse pointer is?

Where can I disable or change it, so that I can use the Ctrl-key in the game again? I didn’t find anything under the mouse or keyboard settings in Gnome. It feels like a nifty feature to locate the mouse pointer, but I had several unnecessary deaths yesterday in Team Fortress 2, as I couldn’t crouch. :frowning:

There should be somewhere a place to configure Gnome keyboard shortcuts. You can then find the one that is making the blue ball and change it to something else. I don’t use Gnome so can’t tell you exactly where to click to find it, but I think if you start to search for “keyboard shortcut” when the app menu is up, it should show something. At least it does in Cinnamon anyway.

Somewhere here probably.

Yeah that is also where I looked (both under mouse and keyboard settings), but couldn’t really tell if any of the options were related to this. I guess I need to look harder.

I was kinda expecting there is just some tickbox for a feature like “Show where the mouse pointer is by pressing and releasing Ctrl”.

It is kinda odd that feature disables the usage of Ctrl within a game completely. The workaround is to change the duck/crouch to some other key (e.g. Shift), but I’d rather not, and in some games or emulators the usage of Ctrl may be even hardcoded, can’t be changed.

I run Steam as a Flatpak too but I run Fedora, will try later today if I run into the same crouch issue if I can find a game where I have to use crouch.

Do you use a desktop environment with Rocky, and if so, which?

I would have preferred to use XFCE because it feels more like old-skool Windows and I am using it also with e.g. Linux Mint, but the Rocky XFCE implementation felt a bit off to me, different from e.g. Linux Mint XFCE. E.g. if I recall correctly, I couldn’t search by typing in the menu, for some reason.

So I went back to the Rocky “default” Gnome then, even if it feels a bit unfamiliar to me, like where the heck are my desktop icons etc. :smiley:

Why not use KDE Plasma then, it’s has a modern look but still Windows type workflow?

Not familiar with it, maybe I should try it. One reason for me to prefer XFCE is also that it is supposed to use less resources than most. I just want a clean and simple GUI that doesn’t waste resources for irrelevant animations etc. GUI/desktop environment is mainly just a “tool” for me to launch different applications, plus all the basic copy&paste stuff with a mouse you expect from a GUI. Especially in Linux where more things are done in command prompt (compared to e.g. Windows).

Since Rocky XFCE felt a bit off to me (compared to Linux Mint XFCE), I went with Gnome as it is apparently the default desktop environment in Rocky, so I expected it is easier to find instructions for it in the Rocky-related discussions…

EDIT: Oh, there was also another reason I wanted to try XFCE: I read it handles the GUI scaling (zoom?) better than Gnome. In Gnome you apparently can use only 100% or 200%, while in XFCE also 125% and/or 150% should be possible (when using a small monitor with a high resolution etc., and naturally my sight is not anymore what it used to be in my youth).

Then again, Gnome does offer the other visual aids like enlarging all the fonts on the desktop with one click etc., so maybe i don’t need that scaling feature that much after all. Sometimes I use this laptop on its own small screen, sometimes it is connected to an external big monitor, so sometimes I need bigger “everything” and sometimes not.

When I use a GUI/desktop with Rocky, I use Rocky with Cinnamon from COPR. I found a howto for it a while back, that said it was for Rocky 8, but perhaps there is also a possibility for Rocky 9. The implementation seems to work the same as when I had Linux Mint with Cinnamon, or even Fedora.

Because I just hate Gnome :slight_smile: it was fine when Gnome 2 but when Gnome 3 came out just urggh. Gnome 4 might be a bit better, but it still looks similar to Gnome 3 so. But just my personal preference.

Discussing desktops is funny, the amount of flame wars I saw on forums due to each persons preference, I just don’t understand. Everyone uses what they like and want, so shouldn’t be an issue :smiley:

Incidently, the keyboard shortcuts in Cinnamon has a very similar look and feel to finding them under Gnome 2, despite Cinnamon being based on later Gnome versions, showing each of the various categories and options and then being able to select the right shortcut, or change it wherever you need. Or for example, enabling CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE to force a restart of X to login again. I always like to enable that one.

I hated Gnome3 too when it first came out and switched to something else after Gnome2 was deprecated. Since a month or so I have switched to Gnome44, found a video that explains the Gnome3 workflow and it’s actually quite similar to that of a tiling window manager which I have used in the past that is why I have grown to like it now.

I do use Gnome, but don’t have such functionality. None of the entries within Settings/Keyboard/Customize Shortcuts looks like it would do such a thing.

Could it be an Accessibility feature? (I can’t recall where one sets those.)

EDIT: Down, down. The Settings do have Accessibility tab, just like the Keyboard tab.
It there is Locate Pointer, and if set ‘on’ does that pulsating blue ball. Turn it off.

Aah yes! That probably is it, I did enable the accessibility features, mainly to enlarge fonts and icons fast when working on a smaller hires screen (kinda workaround for Gnome’s lackluster scaling options, 100% → 200%, but the workaround works fine and is maybe even preferable as the fonts and icons don’t become fuzzy like they may with those scaling methods).

I must check whether it has such an option, and change or disable it. It can be at times an useful feature, so maybe try to switch if to some less used key or button, e.g. the third (wheel) button on my mouse could be perfect, as I never use it for anything else (ie. actually pushing the wheel, sure I use the wheel otherwise for scrolling).

Yep that was it. In the Accessibility options, there was by default a “Locate Pointer” enabled, which caused this behaviour. Disabling it fixed it.

EDIT: Well, that is exactly what you told already, that same option.

I use Accessibility just to enlarge fonts when working on the smaller laptop screen.