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Document last modified: Sun, 09 May 2010, 02:00 UTC
Parents: BlackboxFAQ/

Blackbox FAQ/Startup And Shutdown

This FAQ section covers questions related to the process of starting or stopping Blackbox. This includes things like starting a certain application when Blackbox starts, starting Blackbox together with the system, or triggering reboot/shutdown from the Blackbox menu. If your question is too specific to another application use the /AddOns section instead.

Do not add new questions here. Add them to /NewQuestions instead, so they can be reviewed and answered at least once.

However, feel free to add more answers to any question. Place your answer after any other answers, mark it with a bold A: and add a number if there is already at least one other answer (ie. A1:, A2:).

When in doubt about something, don't do anything or add a comment stating your concernes. Let others review the issue too.

1 Is it possible to set a reboot or a shutdown menu item?
2 How to run an application (e.g. XMMS) everytime Blackbox is started?
3 How do I start applications on Blackbox startup if my login manager is KDM?
4 How do I log directly into Blackbox using a custom login screen?
5 My Ubuntu doesn't have ~/.xinitrc, ~/.Xsession, or ~/.Xclients and I want to add start-up applications to Blackbox. Should I make a .Xsession or .xinitrc, or are they somewhere else?

1) Is it possible to set a reboot or a shutdown menu item?

A1: One method is described in this external link*.

A2: Add these lines somewhere in your menu file:

[exec] (Shut Down) {sudo /sbin/poweroff}
[exec] (Reboot Computer) {sudo /sbin/reboot}

In order for you user to be allowed to use sudo without a password, you will need to edit /etc/sudoers and add the following lines:

%users   ALL=(ALL)     NOPASSWD: /sbin/poweroff
%users   ALL=(ALL)     NOPASSWD: /sbin/reboot
Ubuntu users will need to use %admin instead of %users. Also, some Unices or Linux distributions may need to use /sbin/restart in place of /sbin/reboot.

A3: If for some reason you don't want to use sudo you can alternatively use an utility such as gksu* for the Blackbox menu entries. It is a GTK graphical utility which will prompt you for the root password and then execute the requested command as root. It is effectively the equivalent of su - /sbin/poweroff, except with a graphical password prompt.


2) How to run an application (e.g. XMMS) everytime Blackbox is started?

A: This depends on how you start X. If you use startx, then edit your ~/.xinitrc or ~/.Xsession and add whatever application you want there. Make sure to add them before blackbox and also end their lines with an ampersand (&). This is needed in order for X to know that Blackbox controls it and not any other of those applications. Example:

xset dpms 120 300 600 &
gkrellm -w &
xmms &
exec blackbox

In other cases, such as if you're using Fedora Core, you may need to edit ~/.Xclients instead of ~/.xinitrc.


3) How do I start applications on Blackbox startup if my login manager is KDM?

A: This question is answered here.


4) How do I log directly into Blackbox using a custom login screen?

A: Window managers (such as Blackbox) get on with their business only after the user has authenticated and the X session has begun. If you want a direct graphical login, without the need to go through the console, you need a display manager. There are many display managers out there: X comes with its own xdm (manual*), Gnome has gdm (manual*) and KDE has kdm (manual*). The login screen for any of them can be customized quite extensively.


5) My Ubuntu doesn't have ~/.xinitrc, ~/.Xsession, or ~/.Xclients and I want to add start-up applications to Blackbox. Should I make a .Xsession or .xinitrc, or are they somewhere else?

A: Yes, you have to create them in your user directory. The Ubuntu wiki explains in detail how to create a custom X session*.


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Document last modified: Sun, 09 May 2010, 02:00 UTC
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