Subject: HOWTO get the old pretty xdm login screen back
To: None <,>
From: Rhialto <>
List: current-users
Date: 12/30/2004 17:50:18
I just upgraded my Alpha to 2.0, and now it also had the ugly new
XFree86 login screen as part of xdm, with that horrible ugly logo, and
those colours that make text unreadable on my X-terminal.

This would not do. So I set about getting my old nice simple login
screen back.

First I made some changes so that my hard work will not be lost when I
upgrade again. X config files are, unfortunately, overwritten. But there
is a way around it.

In /etc/rc.conf I change:

xdm=YES			xdm_flags="-config /etc/X11/xdm-config"

and I copied /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xdm/xdm-config to /etc/X11/xdm-config.

and in /etc/X11/xdm-config:

DisplayManager*resources:	/etc/X11/Xresources

where again this is a copy of the file in /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xdm .

I replaced the whole block of lines that start with xlogin (about lines
10 through 80) with the lines from my backup copy:

! Get back xlogin settings from older X versions.
! The new one is soooo ugly...
xlogin*login.translations: #override\
    Ctrl<Key>R: abort-display()\n\
    <Key>F1: set-session-argument(failsafe) finish-field()\n\
    Ctrl<Key>Return: set-session-argument(failsafe) finish-field()\n\
    <Key>Return: set-session-argument() finish-field()
xlogin*borderWidth: 3
xlogin*greeting: CLIENTHOST
xlogin*namePrompt: login:\040
xlogin*fail: Login incorrect
#ifdef COLOR
xlogin*greetColor: CadetBlue
xlogin*failColor: red
*Foreground: black
*Background: #fffff0
xlogin*Foreground: black
xlogin*Background: white

A quick restart of xdm (with new options) and re-login showed that I was
almost there. There were still boxes around the input fields and a
horizontal separator line.

Reading the text I replaced I got this hunch:

! and some extra tweaks:
xlogin*innerFramesWidth: 0

which just leaves the separator line. Fortunately a bit of digging in
the source code inspires this:

xlogin*sepWidth: 0

and voilą, I can now login without hurting my eyes.

                           -- Ceterum censeo "authored[1]" delendum esse.
___ Olaf 'Rhialto' Seibert -- [1] Ugly English neologism[2].
\X/ rhialto/at/   -- [2] For lawyers whose English/Latin is below par.