Logitech G19 (Gaming Keyboard, USB, Wired)

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Logitech G19 (Gaming Keyboard, USB, Wired)
Linux compatibility:
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Logitech G19 
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Updated: 23/06/2016 19:18

Review of Linux Compatibility

The Logitech G19 is a wired keyboard, which is optimized for PC gamer. The keyboard has an integrated USB hub, additional programmable keys, and is equipped with a color display, which can show additional information:

The keyboard is delivered with an external power supply, which is needed to supply the display and the backlight of the keys. The keyboard can be used without this external power supply by using the voltage of the USB port it is connected to, but the monitor is disabled in this case.

The keyboard has the USB ID 046d:c228, while the integrated USB hub has the USB ID 05e3:0607:

Bus 001 Device 004: ID 046d:c228 Logitech, Inc.
Bus 001 Device 008: ID 046d:c229 Logitech, Inc.
Bus 001 Device 003: ID 05e3:0607 Genesys Logic, Inc. Logitech G110 Hub

The Logitech G19 is automatically recognized by the Linux kernel if plugged in:

usb 1-5: new high-speed USB device number 3 using ehci-pci
usb 1-5: New USB device found, idVendor=05e3, idProduct=0607
usb 1-5: New USB device strings: Mfr=0, Product=1, SerialNumber=0
usb 1-5: Product: USB2.0 Hub
hub 1-5:1.0: USB hub found
hub 1-5:1.0: 4 ports detected
usb 1-5.1: new low-speed USB device number 4 using ehci-pci
usb 1-5.1: New USB device found, idVendor=046d, idProduct=c228
usb 1-5.1: New USB device strings: Mfr=0, Product=2, SerialNumber=0
usb 1-5.1: Product: G19 Gaming Keyboard
input: G19 Gaming Keyboard as /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:12.2/usb1/1-5/1-5.1/1-5.1:1.0/input/input16
hid-generic 0003:046D:C228.0003: input,hidraw2: USB HID v1.10 Keyboard [G19 Gaming Keyboard] on usb-0000:00:12.2-5.1/input0
input: G19 Gaming Keyboard as /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:12.2/usb1/1-5/1-5.1/1-5.1:1.1/input/input17
hid-generic 0003:046D:C228.0004: input,hiddev0,hidraw3: USB HID v1.10 Device [G19 Gaming Keyboard] on usb-0000:00:12.2-5.1/input1
usb 1-5.2: new high-speed USB device number 5 using ehci-pci
usb 1-5.2: New USB device found, idVendor=046d, idProduct=c229
usb 1-5.2: New USB device strings: Mfr=1, Product=2, SerialNumber=0
usb 1-5.2: Product: G19 Gaming Keyboard
usb 1-5.2: Manufacturer: Logitech
input: Logitech G19 Gaming Keyboard as /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:12.2/usb1/1-5/1-5.2/1-5.2:1.1/input/input18
hid-generic 0003:046D:C229.0005: input,hiddev0,hidraw4: USB HID v1.11 Keypad [Logitech G19 Gaming Keyboard] on usb-0000:00:12.2-5.2/input1

In this operation mode (e.g. used under Ubuntu) several functions are supported: all standard keys, the wheel at the upper right corner to control sound volume, special keys to control a media player (e.g. Rhythmbox), i.e. play, stop, mute.
However, the display stays dark or only shows the Logitech logo, because it is not automatically supported by the Linux kernel.

Display support – Gnome15

In order to access the display the installation of the software Gnome15 is necessary. This software is available for several Linux distributions but not part of the package management systems. It has to be installed by hand. This software allows to present different kinds of information on the display. The information is provided by several plugins that come with Gnome15. Furthermore, it is possible to program macros for the “G” special keys of the G19, which allows to automatically execute scripted key combinations in a game.

The installation of of Gnome15 was tested under Ubuntu 14.04 and Ubuntu 12.04. The drivers were very unstable under Ubuntu 14.04, and prevented proper testing. There were less (but still some) driver problems under Ubuntu 12.04.

Installation of Gnome15

Precompiled Gnome15 driver for are available for download at the Gnome15 homepage for Ubuntu, ArchLinux, Fedora, Debian, LinuxMint, and OpenSuse.

Under Ubuntu it is possible to add the Gnome15 repository to the package management system of the distribution. This will allow to automatically install updates at later times, if these updates become available. As a first step, the PGP key of the Gnome15 project needs to be added to the system (please copy the original key from the Gnome15 homepage):

echo '-----BEGIN PGP PUBLIC KEY BLOCK-----
Version: GnuPG v2.0.19 (GNU/Linux)

mQENBFFeChUBCADfGbecu2/WP705CJQTlDSGpzeYL/Jev/8Vtb5g8RZhc0tQBQHz
2SP5wGN1Wkz6UuIam1rjRAatoAFNjl4ndurlMACYeqJssS47UOdU01yxqvg546BJ
RXLgbQNGAiu0d12ldjaWfo/LULAb2972Wvqal5ANZjkA0B8R48D7PVNVheuijtmd
XvmlxH8iPonr2Wm/J4oxvMP3BbJL5nOJdh/FDOl2caAHU6R5bVZypizwBFycm
...
Original key available at http://www.russo79.com/gnome15/download/ubuntu
...
/P3kGBvGyYNwcMzGWbmuTAAhaVUrHd7UEzC+dvBmS5PAAkj1TNUKAH2bpUTCmC0C6vW
XrcyClLiKscQqRm7dinsNIGpGcj6U72OrDWepzntK320wSpizJZdP+6OZzxPRmHE
JZAy9UXt0Vf1Mw==
=yaAO
-----END PGP PUBLIC KEY BLOCK-----'| sudo apt-key add -

Afterwards, the repository can be added to the Ubuntu system. Under Ubuntu 14.04 this happens by:

sudo sh -c "echo deb http://packages.russo79.com/debian/gnome15 trusty main > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/gnome15.list"
sudo apt-get update

under Ubuntu 12.04 by

sudo sh -c "echo deb http://packages.russo79.com/debian/gnome15 precise main > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/gnome15.list"
sudo apt-get update

The Graphical User Interface is provided for several Desktop Environments. Under Ubuntu the environment Unity is used as a standard. The GUI software is installed by:

sudo apt-get install gnome15-suite-unity

It is proposed to install the Gnome15 kernel drivers for the Logitech G19

sudo apt-get install gnome15-driver-kernel

After a reboot of the Linux system the keyboard is recognized and the Gnome15 drivers are loaded automatically:

input: gnome15-mouse as /devices/virtual/input/input18
input: gnome15-keyboard as /devices/virtual/input/input19
input: gnome15-joystick as /devices/virtual/input/input20
input: gnome15-digital-joystick as /devices/virtual/input/input21

A Gnome15 icon appears in the unity menu bar. This icon allows to start the configuration software of the keyboard, which allows to set the properties of the plugins and to configure the key macros:

It was necessary under Ubuntu 12.04 to switch to the “Kernel Driver”, which was more stable the “g19direct” driver, which is set by default.

The plugins allow to show several information on the integrated keyboard display (e.g., Teamspeak details, mail status, system status, e.t.c.). The arrow buttons adjacent to the display allow to walk though the different menus. It is even possible to play videos on the display, which is accessed under Linux as a standard Framebuffer device:

Summary

The display of the Logitech G19 can also be used under Linux. However, the necessary drivers are neither part of the Linux kernel nor part of the standard Linux distributions. Installation of the drivers has to be done by hand. The stability of the drivers depends very much on the distribution and the used kernel version. If the driver runs stable, Gnome15 provides several useful functions and allows an easy configuration of the software.


Identified Hardware Configurations (4 Results)

This hardware component was used by Linux users under the following system configurations. These results were collected by our LHG Scan Tool:
Distribution
Kernel
Rating
Scan Date
Funtoo Linux - baselayout 2.2.1 4.8.7-gentoo The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5 26/11/2016
Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS 4.4.0-31-generic The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5 29/07/2016
Debian GNU/Linux 8.5 (jessie) 3.16.0-4-amd64 The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5 23/07/2016
Debian GNU/Linux 7.10 (wheezy) 3.2.0-4-686-pae The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5The user provided the following rating for this hardware: 5 out of 5 30/05/2016

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Comments

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