Graphical Display Managers

Derek Broughton news at
Mon Apr 28 14:03:03 UTC 2008

Constantinos Maltezos wrote:

> I can't get to a console terminal without video corruption on my Kubuntu
> machine, so of course I can't test it, but in the other distro I have and
> in every other flavor of Linux I've used, simply typing the name of the
> display manager at the console will start that selected display manager
> *as long as you are logged in as root* - which, of course, you can't in
> Kubuntu, so maybe
> I don't have a point there.  Except you can still probably still do it
> with sudo.

That just seems wrong.  kdm/gdm/xdm are startup scripts.  In any distro I've
used they run out of /etc/init.d/ or its equivalent.  Wherever that
equivalent is, it isn't going to be in $PATH, so just typing kdm shouldn't
>> The main practical difference between using one of these and just running
>> startx is what kind of background you get behind your splash screen.  
> This is true, but you left out the fact that "startx" will only start the
> graphical interface for the user you're logged in as in the console, while
> the display managers (kdm/gdm/xdm) act as login screens similarly to the
> console login prompt.  You choose what user you want from that point and
> it loads the selected environment.

Yes - seems like a rather significant difference :-)

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