Can no longer copy text from xterm by default

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Andrew David Wong

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Dec 9, 2020, 9:49:44 PM12/9/20
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I used to be able to be able to do the following to copy text from xterm
in Fedora and Debian VMs:

1. Select/highlight the desired text, thereby inserting it into the
PRIMARY buffer.

2. Press <Ctrl + middle mouse button> in order to bring up a menu (I
think it was the "VT Options" menu).

3. In this menu, select the option to copy text from the PRIMARY buffer
to that VM's local clipboard.

4. Press <Ctrl + Shift + C> to copy text to the Qubes inter-VM clipboard
and proceed as usual.

However, some time ago, step 2 suddenly stopped working, and I have no
idea why. Pressing <Ctrl + middle mouse button> in xterm now does
nothing, as far as I can tell. I've checked my trackpad/mouse settings,
and everything seems fine and unchanged. I've tried pressing the left
and right mouse buttons simultaneously instead, but nothing.

I know that I can probably create custom xterm settings that will allow
me to copy text, but I'd still like to know whether there's a way to do
it by default for cases in which the VM is uncustomized. Does anyone
know if there is such a way?

--
Andrew David Wong (Axon)
Community Manager, Qubes OS
https://www.qubes-os.org

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unman

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Dec 10, 2020, 9:25:30 AM12/10/20
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On Debian you can hold down the Ctrl key before pressing the button, to get the
VT options menu. See if that works for you. Does for me.

Ulrich Windl

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Dec 10, 2020, 3:25:20 PM12/10/20
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I never used that, but here for the fedora-32 template it works.
I think you can override bindings inside the app via X resources, but my
suspect is that the window manager "captures" the mouse or key event, so
it does not arrive at the terminal any more.

Regards,
Ulrich


Andrew David Wong

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Dec 10, 2020, 9:47:24 PM12/10/20
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No, that's exactly the behavior I described as no longer working for me.
<Ctrl + middle mouse button> means the same thing as holding down Ctrl
before pressing the middle mouse button.
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Andrew David Wong

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Dec 10, 2020, 9:48:54 PM12/10/20
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I'm confused. You say it's working in the Fedora 32 template for you,
yet you also say the key event is captured, so it's not arriving at the
terminal anymore. How can it be working for you if the key event is
being captured by the window manager?
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unman

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Dec 10, 2020, 10:56:21 PM12/10/20
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In my experience, holding a key down *before* another action does not
always work the same as performing both actions simultaneously, so I
did not think that these "meant the same thing".
Can you call up the Main options, and Font menus using buttons 1 and 2?

unman

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Dec 10, 2020, 11:14:11 PM12/10/20
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Add "XTerm*selectToClipboard:true" to ~/.Xdefaults and you need not
invoke the menu

Andrew David Wong

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Dec 12, 2020, 8:23:23 AM12/12/20
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Ah, interesting. In my experience, they've always meant the same thing
in the context of computing, but I suppose it's possible that some
systems treat them differently.

>> Can you call up the Main options, and Font menus using buttons 1 and 2?
>>

Yes, those are still working as expected.

>
> Add "XTerm*selectToClipboard:true" to ~/.Xdefaults and you need not
> invoke the menu
>

Right. As mentioned above, I'm aware that I can customize the xterm
settings in order to able to copy text, but I'd still like to know
whether there's a way to do it with the default settings for cases in
which the VM is uncustomized.

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Ulrich Windl

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Dec 20, 2020, 6:08:49 PM12/20/20
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You missed something: I' not the one who had the problem; I'm one who
tried to help / explain.

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