getting virtual consoles to work reliably with X

Chris bsd at
Tue Feb 28 21:59:36 PST 2006


Quoting Heliocentric <heliocentric at>:

> I've admined a network of FreeBSD 5.4 desktops for a few months now,
> and I've noticed that when an X server crashes hard, it will no longer
> respond to the control-alt-fn sequences, and not pass them down to
> whatever handler is called to switch virtual consoles.

Have you tried Ctrl+Alt+Backspace? I have used this successfully in the 
past when
X froze. Also, if X barfed and left you at a blank terminal with no 
You might try Ctrl+d. That will log out and place you at a login terminal.
There-by giving you a fresh (clean) session.

Hope that helps.


> When the crash isn't that bad, normally I'd just kill the wdm process
> and let init respawn the display manager. But some days I don't have
> the option to ssh in or use a serial console to kill the daemon, and
> am forced to use the ACPI events to let the kernel shutdown and then
> restart the machine. Not only that, but the other people responsible
> for these machines are used to using the normal virtual console keys
> to kill errant processes on one console that aren't responding to
> signals.
> So I'm wondering, is there a compile time option, patch for atkbd, or
> configuration setting that will allow that driver to trap the
> control-alt-fn sequences itself, before it gets passed up to X? Or am
> I misunderstanding how the keyboard is handled in this situation?
> I would appreciate any help on this matter. Thanks in advance.
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