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The last two lines of my .xinitrc looks like this

xterm -g 80x24+10+10 -bg black -fg green &
metacity

When I used twm, I could exit it from the menu (return to the tty where I run xinit), but how do you exit metacity? The man metacity does not mention this, but it refers to the panel menu (which I don't have). Maybe it's there?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

metacity is not intended to be exited, since it is generally only meant to be used with a session manager. You will need to use an external tool to kill it.

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Yes, I see a metacity process on ps -A. Instinctively, I don't like to pkill things but do you see any harm doing it in this case? (I mean, regularly.) More generally, what decides when you return to the tty after running xinit? Is it when there are no processes left running or is there a specific command that is invoked? –  Emanuel Berg May 22 '12 at 22:44
    
Killing metacity is usually safe regardless of the presence of a session manager. The X server deinitializes when all its children die. –  Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams May 22 '12 at 22:48
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