Showing posts from July, 2014

A journey on Linux from Console to Desktop

This post is aimed at giving an overview of the different elements, commands and configuration files that are involved when Linux switches from console to Desktop, with a focus in the context of Ubuntu 13.04. For an in-depth overview of X11 look at this great series of posts: Xplain.

The following is the structure of the software layers involved in the following discussion: Kernel Runlevel manager: Upstart, SysVinit or systemd Display Manager: lightdm or gdm X11 server: xorg Session Manager/Shell: KDE or Gnome Shell Window Manager/Compositor: compiz, metacity (Gnome), xfwm4 (XFCE) or xcompmgr X11 Application

The execution structure can be summarized as follows:
Upstarts manages the system events, and in particular the runlevel Display Manager Task (of upstarts) is invoked when entering runlevel 2 The default Display Manager (DM) is activated when by the DM Task The DM launches the X11 server Then the Session Manager is started invoking also the Window Manager and other supporting applications
The f…