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| X11 configuration
X11 low-resolution scrollable desktop
This setup is useful for running X11 on a Mac, and for older
GNU/Linux-based X servers. Many newer Linux boxes can't do this anymore and will need a high-DPI setup
instead (unless you want to use VNC-based magnification
The customisation below is for fonts and colours in the low-resolution desktop.
These are usually files and directories in your home
directory whose names start with a dot (.).
You have to use ls -a
them. I do not recommend replacing your
existing files with these without first checking
that your existing files do not contain anything
important. Look at the files and see if you
want to merge anything.
- .Xresources -
used for setting fonts and colours (etc) in various X
applications; a good starting point. See
the comments at the beginning of the file
- .gtkrc -
needed in addition to the above for some
You should save this file as both
.gtkrc-2.0 (or just save it
as .gtkrc and do ln -s .gtkrc
Note: Some badly-behaved programs will need this .gtkrc to
be temporarily renamed before they are started.
and .lyx/preferences - used to
configure LyX (a LaTeX front-end).
Note: If using a version of LyX prior to 1.5.3, use the XForms
version rather than the Qt version, due to LyX bug 4293.
- XEmacs configuration details are on a separate page
Window managers: flwm's colours can be
configured at the command line from within
.xsession, e.g. flwm -fg white -bg
darkblue; if you have an old version that
doesn't obey the -fg flag,
you may be able to upgrade, or apply
the patch I submitted to Debian bug
#267983. On some systems you may have to fall
back to TWM in which case you could try this
If your system causes modern applications to render their fonts
poorly at low resolution, you might also want to check my
FreeType at low resolution
Some distributions also have a package
big-cursor which provides large fonts for
the mouse cursor (sometimes you can
just install it, but very old versions might need a
little setting up).
Don't forget to also adjust the monitor's
`brightness' and `contrast' settings to comfortable
levels. (I usually find a high `contrast' and a low
`brightness' is better.)
If an application's bright background is hurting your eyes, and
you cannot get it to change colours using the above
configuration or any other method, then as a last
resort you can try my VNC
All material © Silas S. Brown unless otherwise stated.