[trick] Leave console free for apps while running X
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Now press Ctrl+Z and startx is in the background, leaving the console free...
eehrm... i think that is not quite correct.
When you press CTRL+Z, startx will not be run in the background. It will be paused (at least the console says 'stopped'). You have to type: 'bg' (background) to unpause startx and to run it in the background. So CTRL+Z is not enough to move your startx into the background.
BTW: if you want to pull startx out of the background, just type 'fg' and it will return to you
The question that begs to be asked is, why would anyone *want* to bring X back to the forground? It's not as though it had any interative feaures. (If I'm wrong about this, someone please enlighten me.)
I don't understand the > /dev/null & part of startx &> /dev/null &.
Also, acid_kewpie: why, as a moderator, would you discourage people from posting tips saying, "we do know all of these tips"?... as if everyone who enters this forum already knows all linux tips. I do agree that these particular tips are better posted in the general linux area though. I just don't understand the point of a moderator trying to make people feel dumb for posting something they apparently consider to be elementary. It would stand to reason that a lot of posts on a BBS for questions about a particular topic would involve subjects that the moderators already know in detail. That's one big reason for having moderator status. Anyway...
/dev/null is a special device that goes... absolutely nowhere, the big bit bucket in the sky. (It's also a great device to use for backups. Guaranteed, backups will go many times faster.).
X outputs all kinds of status messages all the time. This can be useful for debugging when something goes wrong, but would make running X in the background almost useless, because the console is getting bombarded with the status messages. > is used to redicred standard output. In this case, we are redirectiong to /dev/null (quietly disposing of all the data.). Alternatively, you can redirect data to a file to keep a log (or for programs that output to STDOUT and you need to capture it)...
> /somedir/somefile.. Note that as well as STDOUT, there is also STDERR where most programs will send error messages. These are redirected independant of STDOUT with 2>.. for example: startx > /dev/null 2> /somedir/error.log
And finally, you only need one & for the whole thing.
of course people are perfectly free to post useful tips and such, but, being a continually changing forum, tips and such always sink without trace within a very short period of time. some point last year one guy took it upon himself to write a series of lengthy FAQ's that were quite good actually, but naturally as VERY few members ever use the search features on the site it dissapeared within a day.
In actual fact in a short while a few extra features are gonna be added to the site for tips and tutorials and stuff that will hang around permanently. I'm sure contributions will be welcome.