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I left for work this morning with Licq (linux icq) running on my Fedora xwindows gui (the default one that isn't gnome).
When I got to work I started icq without thinking about it, and started getting error messages that icq is already running on another machine (my home one, in fact). My win2k at work handles this with no trouble, but when I got home for lunch there were 600+ error windows on my linux xwindows screen!
Further, xwindows was exhibiting really weird behavior...going to an all white screen, then a screen that was white but with hundreds of licq error message minimized icons on it, etc, and was unresponsive.
I was still able to swap to command line mode with ctrl-alt-F1 or ctrl-alt-F2, but wasn't sure what to do from there.
Eventually I ran ps -A | more to see what was running, and then killed the licq_bin process, but that closed licq without getting rid of the 600 or so error message popups.
Without knowing what else to do, I had to reboot to fix things.
What should I have done instead? How can I fix it when things go wrong on the GUI side of things without using the old Windows-world standby of having to reboot the machine?
If you run a login manager like kdm or xdm then killing it and restarting it will do that. For example, if you run kdm (type ps -A | grep kdm to see if it is running) then a killall -s QUIT kdm will kill it and typing kdm will restart it again.
Originally posted by h/w hi - doesnt <ctrl><alt><backspace> also kill X?
yes, actually it would be a little less work to ctrl+alt+bs, but if X is being unresponsive, it may take awhile to catch the signal, where-as as soon as u flip to a tty killall -HUP X will restart X almost immediatly.. either way you still have to wait for the system to stop being sluggish enough to acknowledge the keypress sequence :-P
oh btw, as soon as you restart X (using whichever method u prefer), you can flip back to terminal 7 (alt+F7) and the login screen should be waiting for you
Thanks. I'll take those suggestions home and play with them until they are familiar so next time I can recover without forcing a total reboot.
It was a bit ironic and funny that after telling my wife about the linux installation and about the stability possible I asked her to turn licq off for me so I could use it at work and she reported back a total white-screen and unresponsive GUI similar to what we'd see so often with the old Win98 installation that was there.
I expect those kind of things in the early days thoough, when I'm a newbie and the linux box is still being configured in major ways.