Is there anyway to (pre)load gnome-shell before getting user account login dialog from gdm?

The problem is after login from gdm I have to wait for gnome-shell to be ready with non-responsive , no status feedback desktop background.

I found that waiting for gdm to show-up during boot process is acceptable but I was expected to get a ready-to-use gnome-shell instantly after entering password to the login dialog instead of another waiting.

I am using Fedora and Arch.

PS. The graphical loading progress in KDE could provide better expif they shown before login dialog too.

  • How about auto-login (gdm3 can do that) and a screen-lock in the autostarted applications? (This is probably not very secure, but might be a quick solution.)
    – sr_
    Sep 6, 2012 at 14:15
  • Thanks, @sr_ from user experience point-of-view this could be a good solution for single-user system.
    – wizzup
    Sep 7, 2012 at 1:42

1 Answer 1


Doing this generally does not make sense. You can have an arbitrary amount of sessions and desktop environments installed. Before a user logs in it's not possible for the system to know which one to (pre)load. As a consequence you would have to load them all.

One thing you could do is to figure out which files are loaded during a typical startup for a particular user:

strace -f -e trace=open <program>

You need to start the session from the console. I don't use gnome-shell and thus cannot tell you the exact command. But you can try gnome-session --session gnome-shell or simply startx.

Now you can load those files into the cache (which is stored in memory):

cat file > /dev/null

This should reduce the amount of data loaded from the disk after login. But I don't know if it's really worth the effort.

  • Thanks, Any way to find out list of files for gnome-shell? and How long is cache life-time? I do agree on 'does not make sense' because I understand how the flow work but for a novice user it turn out that 'please waiting more after waiting' does not make sense at all too, :)
    – wizzup
    Sep 7, 2012 at 1:38
  • I updated my answer. The files reside in the cache as long as the space is not needed by other programs or more recently files read in. Side note: As you are a novice user you should better refrain from using my solution and decide for something simpler, e.g. auto login if security is not that important.
    – Marco
    Sep 7, 2012 at 7:05

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