I think X on my machine works fine without /etc/X11/xorg.conf. Some articles say this file is now deprecated but some Unix-like distributions still teach users how to configure X with this file.

So what is the current status of this file? Should it be used or not? If it isn't deprecated, why is X able to work well without it?

1 Answer 1


Traditionnaly, Xorg was not able to detect and handle all the settings automatically and relied on external intervention to adjust them.

Xorg progressively developed and improved an auto-detection feature which allowed to generate a fairly good configuration file.

That feature eventually became so efficient that it was integrated with the normal engine initialization process.

When present, the configuration file takes precedence over auto-detected settings.

  • 2
    To summarize, /etc/X11/xorg.conf isn't deprecated per se, but the process of explicitly generating or writing it is deprecated. You can still write a /etc/X11/xorg.conf if you need one, but most people don't need one. Dec 29, 2016 at 22:50

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