Sunday, March 25, 2007

Installing Gnome on Gentoo

Installing Gnome

Gnome Base

first of all you have to make sure sun-jdk- is installed, so before installing gnome, do the following:

emerge =dev-java/sun-jdk-

there will come a text that says you have to download a file, follow the instructions and do the emerge command again.

emerge -DuN gnome
rc-update add dbus default
rc-update add hald default

  • If you are missing either dbus or hald, make sure USE="hal" and see HOWTO gnome-volume-manager. I think it's highly unlikely that you meant to not install this.

On a decent system, if you start it before going to bed and wait until work is over the next day, it should be done compiling. If that's too long for you, then check out my page. I've listed there my grp and make.conf.

  • If you have difficulties with gstreamer or your gnome session starts with an error about "no audio device found", check this out: TIP Troubleshooting Gstreamer
  • A couple of times when emerge-ing gnome the merge has failed at merging gtk+. To fix, re-emerge cairo.

Logging In

In order to log into gnome after installation you will need to do one of the following tasks:

  • Text-based Login - Per User Basis - Create your .xinitrc

nano -w ~/.xinitrc
# #OR
# startx

Your .xinitrc might look something like this:

File: ~/.xinitrc

exec gnome-session
# startkde
# fluxbox &
# eterm &

  • Graphical Login

We need to first install GDM (GNOME Display Manager) so we can login using its pretty interface.

emerge -DuN gdm

If you want extra themes for GDM install this package.

emerge -DuN gdm-themes

We now need to edit the file /etc/rc.conf to tell the system to use GDM instead of XDM.

Edit the following lines in rc.conf:

File: /etc/rc.conf

# DISPLAYMANAGER has moved to /etc/conf.d/xdm

File: /etc/conf.d/xdm


We need to add XDM to the default runlevel to be able to start GDM when the system boots up.

rc-update add xdm default

If you would like to have GDM startup quicker at boot find the following line.

File: /etc/init.d/xdm

/sbin/telinit a &>/dev/null

Change it to

File: /etc/init.d/xdm

/etc/X11/ &>/dev/null

And change XDM from default runlevel to the boot runlevel.

rc-update del xdm && rc-update add xdm boot

NOTE This will load GDM in the middle of booting so you wont be able to see the entire boot process.

If you want to check out GDM without a reboot start it up.

/etc/init.d/xdm start

Or if you already have XDM running restart the service.

/etc/init.d/xdm restart

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