Configurable GDM themes for derivated distros

Jani Monoses jani.monoses at
Tue Jan 31 08:29:53 GMT 2006

Héctor Rivas Gándara wrote:
> Hi,
> We are working on a distro based on ubuntu. We need to change all the 
> workart from several packages. Some of them are easy to customize (using 
> gconf, debconf, alternatives, etc...), but others, like gdm, must be 
> modified by patching the source (using simple-patchsys) just to change a 
> pair of lines in the configuration file.
> The same issue happens for changing the splash and the default user 
> background coded in the packages libgnome2-common and gnome-session.
> I think that is too much effort building and maintaining such a big 
> package as gdm in a derived distro, and it's difficult to keep all this 
> packages updated, especially with dapper. I wonder if there is another 
> way to change the default theme for GDM. If there isn't, I suggest to 
> add a mechanism to change it without changes in  the original package:
>     - Add a debconf template to tune it using debconf
>     - Add something like gdmconf-gen that builds the gdm.conf file from 
> a gdm.conf.d
>     - Use update-alternatives and set a "default name" theme in the 
> gdm.conf

This came up with the dapper ubuntu derivatives (edubuntu & xubuntu) and 
the proposed solution so far which is not in the archives yet, is to 
invoke gdm with the --config option and point it to a specific gdm.conf.
This requires a patch to /etc/init.d/gdm


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