Start X at login

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A display manager can be used to provide a login screen and start the X server. This article explains how this can be done automatically without using a display manager.

To manually start X, startx or xinit are used. Both will execute ~/.xinitrc, which may be customized to start the window manager of choice as described in the xinitrc article.

shell profile

Note: This runs X on the same tty used to login, which is required in order to maintain local permissions.

An alternative to a login manager is to add the following to the bottom of your ~/.bash_profile (if ~/.bash_profile does not yet exist, copy a skeleton version from /etc/skel/.bash_profile. If you use zsh as your preferred shell, add the following lines to your ~/.zprofile instead.):

(( $(fgconsole 2>/dev/null) == 1 )) && exec startx -- vt$vt &> ~/.xlog

The user will be logged out when X is killed. In order to avoid this, remove the exec part from the script.

Note: This method can be combined with automatic login to virtual console to provide autologin.