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sth
Long time nixers
for people that DO use them, what are you using for display managers? bare tty login doesn't count unless you've customized it in some way :D

here's my current SLiM setup. i know it's abandoned and supposedly doesn't work well for some things but it still works fine for me as of 2020.

[Image: preview.png]
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nvsbl.org
zge
Long time nixers
Usually the preinstalled DM (for me lightdm), but if I configure a system from scratch I just pick xdm.
twee
Members
I use xenodm because it's preferred for security reasons on OpenBSD. Currently my laptop isn't running BSD though, so I don't use a display manager.
jkl
Long time nixers
xdm is just fine.
wolf
Members
I have xenodm here,
venam
Administrators
I didn't have a display manager for a long time. However, recently I had to install TeamViewer and somehow it requires the X session to be run with a display manager, so I've installed lightdm.

I have no real use for it though, I neither switch between different desktop environment, nor users, nor log in and out often, nor turn off my machine often — I'm on a single user machine.
ckester
Members
Like venam, I'm on a single-user, home machine that I rarely shutdown or logoff. Other than kernel upgrades, there's no reason to. At night I put it into hibernation to save power.

I was running lightdm for a while. It came with MXLinux's default XFCE. But when I switched to spectrwm I went back to the old-fashioned startx approach. Here again, I only need to use that to upgrade the window manager to a new version (I'm following the bleeding edge of spectrwm via git, and it's being getting some recent updates.)
venam
Administrators
It's been a long time since I've personally looked into the display manager/login manager space.
The Arch Wiki seems to have a long list of them.

Do you have recommendations, preferences, or tricks?
seninha
Long time nixers
I'm using xenodm because it's the default (and recommended) on OpenBSD.
I customized it by changing its background to the same I use on my X session.

Blog posts on other people's xenodm configurations:
https://www.tumfatig.net/20190208/custom...bsd-xenodm
https://www.romanzolotarev.com/openbsd/xenodm.html
_-_Specter_-_
Members
I'm using Emptty, a CLI display manager. Pretty simplistic, but I don't need anything fancy.
jkl
Long time nixers
That’s a nice one!
mcol
Nixers
I wish I needed to use a display manager for that extra layer of smooth transition during bootup. Without one, the second or so of blank TTY shown during an auto-login isn't ideal.

A similar area that is largely un-exploited is the framebuffer earlier on during early userspace. This can still be useful on single-user machines, for example if you need to type in a password to decrypt your hard drive. Anyone know of any projects that aim to prettify that sequence? I have hacked together a script to print some block characters and change some colours for when I type in my luks password, but then the login and Wayland startup is automatic: [Image: 1629713911.png]
freem
Nixers
(23-08-2021, 07:19 AM)mcol Wrote: A similar area that is largely un-exploited is the framebuffer earlier on during early userspace. This can still be useful on single-user machines, for example if you need to type in a password to decrypt your hard drive. Anyone know of any projects that aim to prettify that sequence?

Because I would love such a tool, too, here's my cents for anyone willing to give a try at doing it :p

Keep in mind that framebuffers have 2 problems:

1) they are not portable. The stuff might be dead simple to use, (I mean it! It's basically doing 3 calls to ioctl and mmap of some memory, then you just write in there) *BSD does not support it. If you want something portable more easily, you need to go on the DRM/KMS route.
2) some drivers do not support them. I only know about NVidia's driver in that case, though.

When you got the framebuffer stuff working, you still need to get user's input, and here I would advise to use libinput: it's pretty clean, and AFAIK portable. Way better than trying to parse /dev stuff yourself.
Of course, it only deals with input, not with input methods (which belongs to my next point).

Last but not least, you'll need to deal with text. And text is some kind of horrible thing to deal with: you got to manage fonts, you likely got to manage UTF-8, you got to manage glyphs which are made from combined codepoints, you got to manage IMEs...

For fonts, I would advise to support the PSF1 and PSF2 formats only, they may be monospace, but it's the format used by the linux kernel itself and for a good reason: it's damn easy to parse those binary formats. Another simple choice is to go the bdf way, which is *not* monospace, but is really opening a (small) can of worm already: it's a text format, which means the files are big, and harder to parse (correctly). It's badly specified, and Xorg adds it's own layer of shit above it. Last choice, which might seem the easier and have the prettiest end-result, is to use fontconfig, but I would not trust this library for anything boot-related: too much failure points, and if you're speaking about luks, then it's a pretty big thing to add to your initrd.

For the other questions... well, UTF-8 is reasonably easy enough to deal with, in appearance (I still know several programs which randomly break when parsing UTF-8). Combined codepoints might not be that much of a problem at first sight, but then I'm using a latin alphabet, writing stuff with it is pretty easy. This might change for Arabic, CJK, Greek, or Cyrillic (and others?) alphabet users. I know of no solution to really work with unicode. And we're in the IME problem already.

Some possibly useful resources:

http://betteros.org/tut/graphics1.php
https://www.win.tue.nl/~aeb/linux/kbd/fo...ats-1.html