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How to auto login and startx without a display manager in Debian
Dec 232008
 

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If you want to auto login and startx without a display manager in Debian use the one of the following method

Method 1

First you need to edit the /etc/inittab file

#nano /etc/inittab

look for the following line

1:2345:respawn:/sbin/getty 38400 tty1

and commentout

#1:2345:respawn:/sbin/getty 38400 tty1

add the following line

1:2345:respawn:/bin/login -f YOUR_USER_NAME tty1 </dev/tty1 >/dev/tty1 2>&1

Save and exit the file

Now you need to edit .bash_profile and at the bottom add  the following command and save

startx

Method 2

First install rungetty using the following command

#apt-get install rungetty

you need to edit the /etc/inittab file

#nano /etc/inittab

look for the following line

comment out

#1:2345:respawn:/sbin/getty 38400 tty1

and add

1:2345:respawn:/sbin/rungetty tty1 --autologin YOUR_USER_NAME

edit .bash_profile and at the bottom add

if [ -z "$DISPLAY" ] && [ $(tty) = /dev/tty1 ]; then
while true
do
startx --
sleep 10
done
fi

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 Posted by at 12:09 am

  12 Responses to “How to auto login and startx without a display manager in Debian”

  1. Method 2:
    while; true
    do

    You forgot about `;` after “while”.

  2. Great, I had a hunch you could do this and so happy you can. Method 1 worked perfectly, thank you.

  3. Sorry, but neither of these methods work on my Debian machine. I wish I could elaborate on why, but I am not familiar enough with these lower level workings. Could be that I am still using Etch.

    For method 1: It booted normally and prompted me to login at the graphical interface as usual. I logged in on the account chosen for the example and several of the gnome panel applets crashed.

    For method 2: It booted normally and prompted me to login at the graphical interface as usual. I logged in on the account chosen for the example and the GUI hung and I had to undo the changes in the console.

  4. Hi, My keyboard input won’t work when I modify my inittab with “1:2345:respawn:/bin/login -f YOUR_USER_NAME tty1 /dev/tty1 2>&1”, what could i be doing wrong? I’m not starting X, all I want is autologin leaving me in a terminal.

  5. where the hell the .bash_profile is?

  6. @Tim You appear to have a conflicting X manager installed. Check for XDM, GDM, or KDM in your /bin, /usr/bin, /sbin, or /usr/sbin directories. Use “apt-get –remove PACKAGE-NAME-HERE” to remove them.

    @Dan You’re not getting any keyboard input because the way you’ve edited the file looks like it’s sending Standard in (kbd/mouse) and Standard out (display for bash/fish/sh/etc) to null. try taking out the “2>&1” at the end.

    @eev this is a (hidden) file stored in your home directory (/home/USERNAME/) that you might have to create yourself. A simple google search should do you well :-)

  7. oh my god
    guys, you rule!!
    thanks!!

  8. You can get owned by an attacker pressing ctrl+c on tty1…

  9. @captain obvious

    You could install screen then alter your .bashrc to look like this:

    if [ -z “$DISPLAY” ] && [ $(tty) = /dev/tty1 ]; then
    screen -d -m startx && logout
    fi

  10. x:23:once:/sbin/rungetty -u root -g root tty9 — /bin/su creddy -l -c “xinit > /tmp/xinit.out 2>&1”

  11. where do i will find .bash_profile file ?

  12. Where do I find .bash_profile

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