Linux Index

XWindows


Xconfig Setup

  • Before you start, it's safe to be in text mode. If your computer start in graphical mode and if you want to change the configuration, edit (as root) the file /etc/inittab. In the beginning of this file, you can change the default run-level : 3 for text mode in place of 5 (graphical mode). Be careful : change the correct field :
    id:3:initdefault:
    If needed, reboot the computer (for example /usr/sbin/reboot)
  • The configuration file for XWindows setup is XF86Config (see in /etc/X11 or in /usr/lib/X11). It's preferable not to try to edit this file manually ! There is an old-fashion -- text mode -- configuration script : xf86config. It's maybe simpler you try the graphical setup, XF86Setup. You can also start it if you are in text mode (it will automatically switch to a VGA mode).
  • After configuration, try it :
    startx
  • Come back to the text mode with the keys CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE (not to confuse with CTRL-ALT-DELETE !!!)
  • Try now :
    xdm
    This time you won't be able to come back to text mode with CTRL-ALT-BACKSPACE. This key sequence can then only used to log off the current user when his window manager is crashed.
  • If everything is OK, change the default run-level in /etc/inittab:
    id:5:initdefault:
    At the next reboot, it will start in graphical mode.

The window manager

Each user may use a different window manager. I recommend KDE. If you wish that KDE becomes the default window manager for a user, make (or edit) a file named .xsession in the user's home directory. This file should looks like this :
#!/bin/sh
kde