I have in my .xinitrc the line dbus-launch --exit-with-session stumpwm. Occasionally, I'll want to kill everything that has to do with X, get back to a terminal, and start over.

If I ps aux | grep stumpwm and kill the StumpWM process, the window manager dies, but everything with x11 still works. I can type in the window that currently has focus but I can't change focus or do any other window management.

I also tried sudo kill -9 startx, no effect. I noticed another "x" process, xinit, and killing that also had no effect.

1 Answer 1


I figured out 2 solutions to my problem.

First, to kill the graphics, the process that I realized I needed to kill was an Xorg process. I found that with ps aux without a grep filter and scanning every process for something that might be graphics related.

Second, and this is specific to StumpWM, I found out it's possible to use ctrl-alt-f<n> to switch to a different tty and then use export DISPLAY=:0 to allow access to StumpWM through stumpish and then do troubleshooting.

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