11

Long story short; I have a debian system that's been running the unstable tree for over a decade straight (through fire, flames, and multiple hardware upgrades, but that aside). However, a while ago while Debian was transitioning to gnome3 and the gnome-shell desktop there were a couple of hitches in the process, and one or another of those left my regular user with an unusable configuration -- gnome-shell starts up and immediately crashes.

I tried setting up a completely blank new user, and everything runs fine for that one, so it's definitely an issue with a setting local to my main user somewhere... It's just that I have no idea where to start looking, and I don't want to blanket erase all configuration files because I kind of need the vast majority of them. So instead I'm looking to surgically remove all the configuration files and/or options that pertain to gnome-shell and let it rebuild them from scratch when I start it, then work from there.

EDIT: My bad, slight naming fail. The problem seems to be in gnome-shell rather than gnome-session.

  • Similar question?. Should give some hint where to look at least. – user13742 Jul 16 '12 at 16:34
  • Yes, but that'd nuke the settings for all sorts of other programs I am still using. – Shadur Jul 16 '12 at 16:45
  • gnome-shell is new in Gnome3, making it hard to believe it's a problem with your old config. Try starting a separate xserver (as root) where gnome-shell (as your main-user) is the only client and see if gnome-shell will run if nothing else is running. – Bananguin Jul 17 '12 at 10:05
  • Like I said, debian went through a few iterations in unstable to get it right. I started working with gnome3 in sid when it first came out, and somewhere along the line something broke. – Shadur Jul 17 '12 at 10:21
  • 1
    If gnome-shell starts up and immediately crashes, check for enabled gnome-shell add-ons. Disable all add-ons to see if that fixes the crash. – fpmurphy Feb 29 '16 at 2:39
2

How do you know it's a gnome-session problem? It may just as well be program launched by gnome-session.

When it comes to configuraion, gnome is ... colourful. Configuration may be stored in

  • ~/.gnomerc (file)
  • ~/.gnome (dir)
  • ~/.gnome2 (dir)
  • ~/.local (dir)
  • and of course in gconf, a.k.a. the gnome registry.

IIRC gnome-session doesn't do a whole lot. It starts the required components listed in gconf under /desktop/gnome/session (see /desktop/gnome/session/required_components for the programms that actually fulfill the requirements). After that it's rather passive.

To access this data you can either use a graphical user interface or gconftool-2. To browse through your configuration you could

gconftool-2 -a --all-dirs /desktop/gnome/session
gconftool-2 -a --all-dirs /desktop/gnome/session/required_components

gnome-sessions "config" is under/apps/gnome-session. What may also be interessting for you is /apps/gnome_settings_daemon, its subdirs and of course the /apps entries for all required components.

After that you need to scan through the directories. According to my experience most interessting options are in .gnomerc .gnome and .local. But I think .local is more of a recent thing in Gnome so your problem is probably not there.

  • 1
    Thanks for the reminder; looks like my actual problem is in gnome-shell rather than gnome-session. Question edited. – Shadur Jul 17 '12 at 7:45
  • some your configuration files are missing. – PersianGulf Feb 12 '14 at 20:15
  • 3
    please contribute by adding the missing locations, rather than just downvoting – Bananguin Feb 13 '14 at 9:24

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.