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Old 04-12-2006, 09:23 PM   #1
jaddison
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switch to user installed window manager without root


I have built and installed enlightenment, E17, in my own account. I want to use my new window manager, but I don't have root access. In general, how can I use a window manager, that I have built and installed as a regular user, without having root (to edit Xsession/gdm files in /etc)?

I have tried entering the following in my own .Xclients, .Xclients-default, and .xsession files:

#!/bin/bash
. $HOME/.bash_profile # needed?
exec /home/jra/enl/bin/enlightenment # where I installed it

Which hasen't worked.

Thanks
 
Old 04-12-2006, 09:36 PM   #2
Simon Bridge
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Which distro is this?
In what way didn't the script work? "Only root can do this" error or suchlike?

In general, you don't get to alter your default WM without being root.
Ask your admin. Since this is not you, i.e. the question ain't hypothetical, then this is definately something the system administrator needs to know you are doing. Ask permission to install/use a different WM first. It's polite.

On FC4, for eg, you yum install enlightenment ... log out, log in to enlightenment. But yum requires admin to use.

Similarily with Ubuntu http://ubuntuforums.org/archive/index.php/t-20216.html

Last edited by Simon Bridge; 04-12-2006 at 09:38 PM.
 
Old 04-12-2006, 09:37 PM   #3
tomdkat
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Read this info on .xinitrc. Look near the bottom of the page for an example but I suggest reading the entire page to learn what's happening.

Peace...
 
Old 04-12-2006, 09:42 PM   #4
Simon Bridge
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Cool tomdkat... I thought xinit needed admin to set up?
For that matter, most distros have WM changers.
 
Old 04-12-2006, 09:50 PM   #5
jaddison
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Simon,

the distro is Fedora Core 4

Why should I have to get root to switch my WM? Why does the sys admin need to know? This doesn't really make sense to me as it is just another program. In fact, X itself is just another program. I should be able to login without X if I wanted to. By the way, does anyone know how I can do this in FC4? That would go part way to solving my original problem since I could then start everything by hand.

Thanks
 
Old 04-12-2006, 09:54 PM   #6
tomdkat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaddison
Why should I have to get root to switch my WM?
If the info at the site I linked to above is right (and I think it is), you shouldn't have to have root authority to run the window manager. I know I've switched WMs on the fly as a regular user, so it's possible.

Quote:
In fact, X itself is just another program.
This isn't completely accurate. X itself is a privileged program and the WMs that run are X clients that connect to the X server. X is a "special" program where the WMs aren't or at least aren't in the same context as X, itself, is.

Quote:
I should be able to login without X if I wanted to.
And you most certainly can.

Quote:
By the way, does anyone know how I can do this in FC4? That would go part way to solving my original problem since I could then start everything by hand.
Again, read the link I posted above. It talks about configuring X behavior which isn't distro specific.

Peace...
 
Old 04-12-2006, 10:07 PM   #7
jaddison
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tomdkat,

I'll check it out. I've been trying to avoid understanding the X related dot files, but I guess it is time dig in. I have a feeling that the FC4 login/display manager thing will override my .xintrc (I think I tried this with fluxbox a long time ago without success), but I'll try again.

Thanks again ...
 
Old 04-12-2006, 10:18 PM   #8
Simon Bridge
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OK - I'll downgrade my reaction.

I still think the system administrator will want to know about this sort of thing. They will explain to you if it matters to them... if it dosn't, then they will probably quite happily set up the WM you want for you, then you won't have all this hassle Is there any reason not to ask them?

Whatever you think you "aught" to be able to do - whoever owns the computer or runs the network may disagree. Workplaces usually have policies about what may and may not be used.

But enough of that...
On my FC4 machine, I can shut down X by ctrl-alt-backspace. I get a login prompt (text mode). To get X back, I enter "startx" at a user prompt.

Alternatively, your sysadmin can arrainge for you to start at runlevel 3 ... I cannot see why they would object to that. There are advantages to starting up this way, and your admin may actually prefer it.

Whichever you choose - please add your distro to your profile. Thanks.
 
Old 04-12-2006, 10:27 PM   #9
tomdkat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Bridge
OK - I'll downgrade my reaction.

I still think the system administrator will want to know about this sort of thing. They will explain to you if it matters to them... if it dosn't, then they will probably quite happily set up the WM you want for you, then you won't have all this hassle Is there any reason not to ask them?

Whatever you think you "aught" to be able to do - whoever owns the computer or runs the network may disagree. Workplaces usually have policies about what may and may not be used.
I agree wholeheartedly. My comments above focused more on what is possible and didn't address system policy. If the system policy is only the default WM can be used, so be it.

Peace...
 
Old 04-12-2006, 10:31 PM   #10
tomdkat
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaddison
I'll check it out. I've been trying to avoid understanding the X related dot files, but I guess it is time dig in. I have a feeling that the FC4 login/display manager thing will override my .xintrc (I think I tried this with fluxbox a long time ago without success), but I'll try again.
If you're looking to avoid understanding how X works, you shouldn't be attempting what you're attempting.

If my failing memory serves me correctly, I believe I've done what you're wanting to do on a Solaris machine we have. I'm the sysadmin for the box but I used root authority to simply install enlightenment DR16 in /usr/local somewhere. Once it was installed, I ran it via .xinitrc. It was kinda neat since I would access the box via XDMCP and after I logged in via the CDE login prompt, E would start in all its glory.

What was even better was I was able to run E while others were logged in via XDMCP running standard CDE sessions. It was like we had 3 people sitting at the console all at once!

Peace...
 
Old 04-13-2006, 09:42 AM   #11
tomdkat
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So, where did this end up?

Peace...
 
Old 04-13-2006, 05:36 PM   #12
jaddison
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tomdkat,

Still working on it. I just checked out everything fresh from cvs. So, as soon as I get the builds done and few extra minutes I'll give it a shot and let you know.
 
Old 04-13-2006, 05:46 PM   #13
jaddison
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Got it!

I such an idiot! I only had to make my .Xclients / .Xclients-default (I'm not sure which one is required, I have them as both the same) executable.

Now I have to figure out how switch my CapsLock and Ctrl; under Gnome it was configured via some gui config thing. Now I'll have to find the right way to do it.

Thanks for the input ...
 
Old 04-13-2006, 07:23 PM   #14
tomdkat
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Glad you got it worked out.

Peace...
 
  


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