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Edit: Solution -- Installed Prompt by Panic. Worked out of the box and is generally more straight forward. If you're just interested in a straight SSH client, save yourself $10 and download Prompt. If you're looking for lots of bells and whistles and don't have any special requirements (i.e. Dvorak layout), iSSH may be for you, but definitely do your research.

This is typically the kind of thing I would try to work out myself, but it combines a few areas where I am not particularly knowledgable.

Consider the following:

  • Apple iPad 3
  • Microsoft Mobile Keyboard 5000
  • iSSH app

Goal: SSH into a linux machine and maintain the same experience I would have sitting at the box itself. Of particular concern is the ability to use the screen window manager utility and the Dvorak keyboard layout.

Current Status: I have set the Dvorak layout on the iPad via the settings at General > Keyboard > International Keyboards > English. I am able to produce all the characters on an U.S. English QWERTY keyboard including all the roman characters, numbers, punctuation, symbols above the numbers, brackets, etc. I can SSH into my linux box and everything is generally fine.

Problem: Keyboard shortcuts are not operating as one would expect. Just to give an examples, to cut a line in bash, one would typically use ctrl-j (as in the physical j on the keyboard which corresponds to the Dvorak u, if that makes sense; also the IBM ctrl, not the Apple ctrl). This is not working with this current configuration. However, if I use ctrl-u (as in the physical u on the keyboard which corresponds to the Dvorak g), the line is cut as it would be if I was using the standard QWERTY layout. As another example, if I am using screen, my default escape sequence (C-h) doesn't escape, which means I cannot create new windows, or really take advantage of anything offered by screen.

Interestingly, if I use the typical QWERTY layout, everything, as far as I can tell, works as expected.

Other Notes:

  • I am not a Mac person, but I have used them enough to know that their modifiers are different than on an IBM keyboard. I am just not familiar enough with Apple's arrangement to know whether or not this is contributing to my problem, especially since I am throwing a different keyboard layout into the mix.
  • I used to believe that one could make a server side request to change the layout (`loadkeys dvorak'), but I have not had success with this approach. Additionally, I recently read that keyboard layouts are entirely client side. I don't know if this is correct, but I am inclined to believe it.
  • I have almost no knowledge of iSSH's capabilities. Might the issue be with the app? I am not inclined to purchase a different client app just to experiment. If this is the case, what alternatives exist that would support my needs?

If anyone has any insight regarding this problem, I would be grateful for any information or suggestions.

share|improve this question
prompt from Panic is rumored to have better key support that iSSH. – user588 Sep 6 '12 at 21:44
You're absolutely right. I got frustrated and downloaded that yesterday. Worked out of the box. – Micah Sep 7 '12 at 15:22

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