karmic: XFCE session broken with external TFT/VGA?

Kristian Rink kawazu at zimmer428.net
Fri Oct 23 07:36:56 UTC 2009


running Ubuntu 9.10 beta, GNOME and XFCE installed, on a Toshiba Tecra
notebook, partly working with the machine "standalone", partly (at the
office) having it attached to a docking station with an external TFT / VGA

The external display seems a little flaky relating to Linux compatiblilty,
needed to add a custom modeline to xorg.conf to have it working using the
desired resolution (1280x1024 @ 75Hz), plus this resolution never was
automatically restored when rebooting the machine into X. So far, using 9.04
I merrily used a bash script wrapping xrandr to, after logging in to XFCE,
fix this problem and restore the desired resolution.

After upgrading to 9.10, I saw a few problems about that:

(a) Initially, my xrandr wrapper script didn't work anymore. Resolution
wasn't switched.

(b) However, for the first time using my hardware, I was capable of setting
the "right" resolution (in both GNOME and XFCE) using the screen properties
configuration panel. Good.

(c) By now, the machine boots into a bad default resolution when connected
to the external VGA, but as soon as I log in to GNOME, the "right"
resolution is correctly restored. Good.

(d) Bad, however: as soon as I log in to XFCE, there are two things that
could possibly happen: Either the external TFT goes "No signal" followed by
an "Out of range" message, blacking out, leaving my only choice to reboot
the machine and try again. Or, it goes "no signal" for a few seconds to then
fall back to GDM, leaving (according to .xsession-errors) me with the
impression that the X server died all of a sudden, leaving none of the XFCE
apps capable of connecting to it.

So to ask:

- Is XFCE in Xubuntu 9.10 also trying to restore its screen resolution on login?

- If so, how to fix this behaviour in my situation (given it works pretty
flawless in GNOME, I assume my display generally works, but I don't want to
work with GNOME full time ).

TIA and all the best,

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