problem regarding setting DISPLAY env variable and hostname

Giorgos Keramidas keramida at
Wed Feb 22 10:28:22 PST 2006

On 2006-02-22 10:17, Rob <rob at> wrote:
> I have been trying to figure out how to set the display name on my
> computer.  I have a program used with Xorg that gives me the error
> message:
> _X11TransSocketINETConnect() can't get address for xenon:6000: hostname nor servname provided, or not known
> Error: Can't open display: xenon:0.0
> also when starting or stopping Xorg I either get:
> bad display name "xenon:0" in "remove" command    or
> bad display name "xenon:0  in "list" command

Your laptop can't resolve the name "xenon".

> I have my XDISPLAY env variable set using (in Bash):
> DISPLAY=xenon:0.0 export DISPLAY
> xenon is the name of the machine
> I think part of the problem is the setting of the hostname.  This laptop
> runs off of DHCP and I am not really sure about what I should do for
> setting the hostname.  The manual says to set HOSTNAME="" in rc.conf if
> using DHCP, but then I get the amnesiac message upon boot.  Sendmail
> doesn't like that either and hangs during the boot process.  So I just
> set it arbitrarily to "xenon"

Note that the capitalization of rc.conf variables is *significant*.  The
real rc.conf variable that you have to set to avoid the "Amnesiac" name is:


> I have read manual pages, searched the archives, but I am really confused
> about all of this.  Thank you for any help.

All this can be resolved by using `/etc/hosts'.  Just add your hostname
there and point it to the address.  Then all programs should be
able to resolve it.

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