My Amazon EC2 dev box crashed yesterday and I had to rebuild it from scratch. Installed Ubuntu 10.10, configured VNC and ran into a keyboard mapping problem. Every time I hit the letter “d”, all my windows would iconify. I went down many false paths as did this poor soul, applying solutions from old releases. I was finally able to determine the problem was actually the window manager, in this case it was metacity. I didn’t bother to try to change the window manager in the gnome settings, because they didn’t appear to be running correctly either. The simple solution was to just specify fvwm in .vnc/xstartup:
#!/bin/sh xrdb $HOME/.Xresources xsetroot -solid grey vncconfig -iconic & #x-terminal-emulator -geometry 80x24+10+10 -ls -title "$VNCDESKTOP Desktop" & #x-window-manager & # Fix to make GNOME work (doesn't do shat for me) export XKL_XMODMAP_DISABLE=1 gnome-panel & fvwm
Hopefully this will save someone else the time I wasted on this.