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Revision as of 19:29, 20 January 2012 by Therealplato (talk | contribs) (XDM loops back to itself after login)
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From XDM manual page:

Xdm manages a collection of X displays, which may be on the local host or remote servers. The design of xdm was guided by the needs of X terminals as well as The Open Group standard XDMCP, the X Display Manager Control Protocol. Xdm provides services similar to those provided by init, getty and login on character terminals: prompting for login name and password, authenticating the user, and running a "session."

XDM provides a simple and straightforward graphical login prompt.


Install xorg-xdm, available in the Official Repositories.

Make the ~/.xsession file executable.

$ chmod 744 .xsession

If you would also like to use an Arch Linux theme for XDM, you can optionally install the xdm-archlinux package, also available in the Official Repositories.

See Display Manager for additional information.

Background wallpaper

Here are some tips to make XDM look nicer:

  • Install the Quick Image Viewer:
# pacman -S qiv
  • Make a directory to store background images. (e.g. /root/backgrounds or /usr/local/share/backgrounds)
  • Place your images in the directory. If you do not have any try [1] for starters.
  • Edit /etc/X11/xdm/Xsetup_0. Change the xconsole command to:
 /usr/bin/qiv -zr /root/backgrounds/*
  • Edit /etc/X11/xdm/Xresources. Add/replace the following defines:
 xlogingreetFont:  -adobe-helvetica-bold-o-normal--20------iso8859-1
 xloginfont:       -adobe-helvetica-medium-r-normal--14------iso8859-1
 xloginpromptFont: -adobe-helvetica-bold-r-normal--14------iso8859-1
 xloginfailFont:   -adobe-helvetica-bold-r-normal--14------iso8859-1
 xlogin*frameWidth: 1
 xlogin*innerFramesWidth: 1
 xlogin*logoPadding: 0
 xlogin*geometry:    300x175-0-0

Comment out the logo defines:

 #xlogin*logoFileName: /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xdm/pixmaps/xorg.xpm
 #xlogin*logoFileName: /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xdm/pixmaps/xorg-bw.xpm

For the exact meaning of the definitions, see the man page of xdm.

  • Update /etc/pacman.conf so the changes do not get erased:
 ~NoUpgrade   = etc/X11/xdm/Xsetup_0 etc/X11/xdm/Xresources

The changes will now give you a random wallpaper image and move the login prompt to the botom-right edge of the screen.


XDM loops back to itself after login

The current version of the xorg-xdm package, available in the Official Repositories is patched to register sessions with ConsoleKit by default. If ConsoleKit is not running, XDM will fail to succesfully launch an X session. D-Bus can be used invoke ConsoleKit when called upon by XDM.

Make sure that the dbus package, available in the Official Repositories is installed and then make sure dbus is included in the DAEMONS array in /etc/rc.conf.

DAEMONS=(... dbus ...)

Also, make sure that you are actually starting your window manager! Mine's the command xmonad in my ~/.xsession