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Old 12-19-2008, 09:51 AM   #1
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Distribution: Ubuntu 8.04
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Unable to start x from command line

I'm working with Yellow Dog Linux on an old eMac, and I've managed to Install, but can't get past the command line.

When I try to startx, I get the message
Parse error on line 54 of section monitor in file /etc/X11/xorg.cof

(EE) Problem parsing the config file
(EE) Error parsing the config file
The VertRefresh keyword must be followed by a list of numbers or ranges.
Fatal Server error:
no screens found

can anyone tell me:
a) what this means?
b) what I can do to fix it.
Old 12-19-2008, 10:03 AM   #2
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Problem parsing the config file. This means there is, are items missing in the config file. The specific error listed has to do with Vertical Refresh. Here is what a good file looks like.

Section "Monitor"

# TV fullscreen mode or DVD fullscreen output.
# 768x576 @ 79 Hz, 50 kHz hsync
Identifier "monitor1"
VendorName "Acer"
ModelName "Acer AL1911"
HorizSync 24.0 - 80.0
VertRefresh 56.0 - 75.0
ModeLine "768x576" 50.0 768 832 846 1000 576 590 595 630
ModeLine "768x576" 63.1 768 800 960 1024 576 578 590 616
This error
Fatal Server error:
no screens found
would lead me to believe there is no screen definition.

Here is what a good one will look like.

Section "Screen"
Identifier "screen1"
Device "device1"
Monitor "monitor1"
DefaultDepth 24
Option "DPMS"
Option "DynamicTwinView" "false"
Option "AddARGBGLXVisuals" "True"
SubSection "Display"
Depth 8
Modes "1280x1024" "1152x864" "1024x768" "832x624" "800x600" "640x480" "480x360" "320x240"
SubSection "Display"
Depth 15
Modes "1280x1024" "1152x864" "1024x768" "832x624" "800x600" "640x480" "480x360" "320x240"
SubSection "Display"
Depth 16
Modes "1280x1024" "1152x864" "1024x768" "832x624" "800x600" "640x480" "480x360" "320x240"
SubSection "Display"
Depth 24
Modes "1280x1024" "1152x864" "1024x768" "832x624" "800x600" "640x480" "480x360" "320x240"
These examples are from my system. Do not try to edit the /etc/X11/xorg.conf file and put in my values. They probably would not work for you.

This file has to be edited by root user. Most systems have a configuration utility to configure the file. I don't know Yellow Dog, have a look at the documentation for the name of the utility. Run it, you will have to know a bit about the video hardware, the screen etc. If you do not know where to find the information, post the make and model of the hardware. Hopefully someone can help with specific directions.
Old 12-19-2008, 02:24 PM   #3
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Fix Xserver config

From command line run Xconfigurator as root.

Old 12-19-2008, 11:14 PM   #4
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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Thanks for the advice!

I tried running Xconfigurator as root, but got the reply:
-bash: Xconfigurator: command not found.

I found a reference in the paperwork from terrasoft to a term Xautoconfig, which returned the reply:

Wrote /etc/X11/xorg.conf

However, when I tried startx it again returned the same error as before.

Any other suggestions?

Oh, and I'm running a G4 eMac, with a 40GB hard drive and 640 MB RAM.

Not sure what the screen is, but it's all one unit, so I can probably find that info out pretty easily!
Old 12-20-2008, 07:37 AM   #5
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The utility I am used to is "xorgconfig". regardless of what tool you use, you still sometimes have to edit xorg.conf by hand.

At some point, you have to enter reasonable values for Horiz and vertical refresh rates---ideally the ones specified for the monitor. Older monitors can be damaged by the wrong settings, so proceed with caution.

If you can't find the specs on the monitor, then post the screen size and type (eg CRT or LCD flatpanel)
Old 12-20-2008, 10:04 AM   #6
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It might save some time if you just post your xorg.conf too.
Old 12-29-2008, 03:46 AM   #7
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
Distribution: Ubuntu 8.04
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Hi, I've been away for a little while, but now that I'm back I've managed to both find the vertical refresh rates for my Monitor (70-140 for anybody keeping score at home) AND edit my xorg successfully.

I now have a working graphical desktop environment.

Thanks so much for the advice!!


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