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XF86Config

- Configuration File for XFree86


  1. XF86Config.5.man
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1. XF86Config.5.man

Manpage of XF86Config

XF86Config

Section: Misc. Reference Manual Pages (5x)
Updated: Version Version 4.3.0.1
Index Return to Main Contents
 

NAME

XF86Config - Configuration File for XFree86  

DESCRIPTION

XFree86 uses a configuration file called XF86Config for its initial setup. This configuration file is searched for in the following places when the server is started as a normal user:

/etc/X11/<cmdline>
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/<cmdline>
/etc/X11/$XF86CONFIG
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/$XF86CONFIG
/etc/X11/XF86Config-4
/etc/X11/XF86Config
/etc/XF86Config
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/XF86Config.<hostname>
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/XF86Config-4
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/XF86Config
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config.<hostname>
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config-4
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config

where <cmdline> is a relative path (with no ".." components) specified with the -xf86config command line option, $XF86CONFIG is the relative path (with no ".." components) specified by that environment variable, and <hostname> is the machine's hostname as reported by gethostname(3).

When the X server is started by the "root" user, the config file search locations are as follows:

<cmdline>
/etc/X11/<cmdline>
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/<cmdline>
$XF86CONFIG
/etc/X11/$XF86CONFIG
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/$XF86CONFIG
$HOME/XF86Config
/etc/X11/XF86Config-4
/etc/X11/XF86Config
/etc/XF86Config
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/XF86Config.<hostname>
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/XF86Config-4
/usr/X11R6/etc/X11/XF86Config
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config.<hostname>
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config-4
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config

where <cmdline> is the path specified with the -xf86config command line option (which may be absolute or relative), $XF86CONFIG is the path specified by that environment variable (absolute or relative), $HOME is the path specified by that environment variable (usually the home directory), and <hostname> is the machine's hostname as reported by gethostname(3).

The XF86Config file is composed of a number of sections which may be present in any order. Each section has the form:

Section  "SectionName"
    SectionEntry
    ...
EndSection

The section names are:

Files          File pathnames
ServerFlags    Server flags
Module         Dynamic module loading
InputDevice    Input device description
Device         Graphics device description
VideoAdaptor   Xv video adaptor description
Monitor        Monitor description
Modes          Video modes descriptions
Screen         Screen configuration
ServerLayout   Overall layout
DRI            DRI-specific configuration
Vendor         Vendor-specific configuration

The following obsolete section names are still recognised for compatibility purposes. In new config files, the InputDevice section should be used instead.

Keyboard       Keyboard configuration
Pointer        Pointer/mouse configuration

The old XInput section is no longer recognised.

The ServerLayout sections are at the highest level. They bind together the input and output devices that will be used in a session. The input devices are described in the InputDevice sections. Output devices usually consist of multiple independent components (e.g., and graphics board and a monitor). These multiple components are bound together in the Screen sections, and it is these that are referenced by the ServerLayout section. Each Screen section binds together a graphics board and a monitor. The graphics boards are described in the Device sections, and the monitors are described in the Monitor sections.

Config file keywords are case-insensitive, and "_" characters are ignored. Most strings (including Option names) are also case-insensitive, and insensitive to white space and "_" characters.

Each config file entry usually takes up a single line in the file. They consist of a keyword, which is possibly followed by one or more arguments, with the number and types of the arguments depending on the keyword. The argument types are:

Integer     an integer number in decimal, hex or octal
Real        a floating point number
String      a string enclosed in double quote marks (")

Note: hex integer values must be prefixed with "0x", and octal values with "0".

A special keyword called Option may be used to provide free-form data to various components of the server. The Option keyword takes either one or two string arguments. The first is the option name, and the optional second argument is the option value. Some commonly used option value types include:

Integer     an integer number in decimal, hex or octal
Real        a floating point number
String      a sequence of characters
Boolean     a boolean value (see below)
Frequency   a frequency value (see below)

Note that all Option values, not just strings, must be enclosed in quotes.

Boolean options may optionally have a value specified. When no value is specified, the option's value is TRUE. The following boolean option values are recognised as TRUE:

1, on, true, yes

and the following boolean option values are recognised as FALSE:

0, off, false, no

If an option name is prefixed with "No", then the option value is negated.

Example: the following option entries are equivalent:

Option "Accel"   "Off"
Option "NoAccel"
Option "NoAccel" "On"
Option "Accel"   "false"
Option "Accel"   "no"

Frequency option values consist of a real number that is optionally followed by one of the following frequency units:

Hz, k, kHz, M, MHz

When the unit name is omitted, the correct units will be determined from the value and the expectations of the appropriate range of the value. It is recommended that the units always be specified when using frequency option values to avoid any errors in determining the value.  

FILES SECTION

The Files section is used to specify some path names required by the server. Some of these paths can also be set from the command line (see Xserver(1) and XFree86(1)). The command line settings override the values specified in the config file. The entries that can appear in this section are:
FontPath "path"
sets the search path for fonts. This path is a comma separated list of font path elements which the X server searches for font databases. Multiple FontPath entries may be specified, and they will be concatenated to build up the fontpath used by the server. Font path elements may be either absolute directory paths, or a font server identifier. Font server identifiers have the form:

<trans>/<hostname>:<port-number>

where <trans> is the transport type to use to connect to the font server (e.g., unix for UNIX-domain sockets or tcp for a TCP/IP connection), <hostname> is the hostname of the machine running the font server, and <port-number> is the port number that the font server is listening on (usually 7100).

When this entry is not specified in the config file, the server falls back to the compiled-in default font path, which contains the following font path elements:

/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/misc/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Speedo/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Type1/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/CID/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi/

The recommended font path contains the following font path elements:

/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/local/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/misc/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/:unscaled
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi/:unscaled
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Type1/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/CID/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/Speedo/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi/
/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/100dpi/

Font path elements that are found to be invalid are removed from the font path when the server starts up.

RGBPath "path"
sets the path name for the RGB color database. When this entry is not specified in the config file, the server falls back to the compiled-in default RGB path, which is:

/usr/X11R6/lib/X11/rgb

Note that an implicit .txt is added to this path if the server was compiled to use text rather than binary format RGB color databases.

ModulePath "path"
sets the search path for loadable X server modules. This path is a comma separated list of directories which the X server searches for loadable modules loading in the order specified. Multiple ModulePath entries may be specified, and they will be concatenated to build the module search path used by the server.
 

SERVERFLAGS SECTION

The ServerFlags section is used to specify some global X server options. All of the entries in this section are Options, although for compatibility purposes some of the old style entries are still recognised. Those old style entries are not documented here, and using them is discouraged.

Options specified in this section (with the exception of the "DefaultServerLayout" Option) may be overridden by Options specified in the active ServerLayout section. Options with command line equivalents are overridden when their command line equivalent is used. The options recognised by this section are:

Option "DefaultServerLayout" "layout-id"
This specifies the default ServerLayout section to use in the absence of the -layout command line option.
Option "NoTrapSignals" "boolean"
This prevents the X server from trapping a range of unexpected fatal signals and exiting cleanly. Instead, the X server will die and drop core where the fault occurred. The default behaviour is for the X server to exit cleanly, but still drop a core file. In general you never want to use this option unless you are debugging an X server problem and know how to deal with the consequences.
Option "DontVTSwitch" "boolean"
This disallows the use of the Ctrl+Alt+Fn sequence (where Fn refers to one of the numbered function keys). That sequence is normally used to switch to another oqvirtual terminal)cq on operating systems that have this feature. When this option is enabled, that key sequence has no special meaning and is passed to clients. Default: off.
Option "DontZap" "boolean"
This disallows the use of the Ctrl+Alt+Backspace sequence. That sequence is normally used to terminate the X server. When this option is enabled, that key sequence has no special meaning and is passed to clients. Default: off.
Option "DontZoom" "boolean"
This disallows the use of the Ctrl+Alt+Keypad-Plus and Ctrl+Alt+Keypad-Minus sequences. These sequences allows you to switch between video modes. When this option is enabled, those key sequences have no special meaning and are passed to clients. Default: off.
Option "DisableVidModeExtension" "boolean"
This disables the parts of the VidMode extension used by the xvidtune client that can be used to change the video modes. Default: the VidMode extension is enabled.
Option "AllowNonLocalXvidtune" "boolean"
This allows the xvidtune client (and other clients that use the VidMode extension) to connect from another host. Default: off.
Option "DisableModInDev" "boolean"
This disables the parts of the XFree86-Misc extension that can be used to modify the input device settings dynamically. Default: that functionality is enabled.
Option "AllowNonLocalModInDev" "boolean"
This allows a client to connect from another host and change keyboard and mouse settings in the running server. Default: off.
Option "AllowMouseOpenFail" "boolean"
This allows the server to start up even if the mouse device can't be opened/initialised. Default: false.
Option "VTInit" "command"
Runs command after the VT used by the server has been opened. The command string is passed to "/bin/sh -c", and is run with the real user's id with stdin and stdout set to the VT. The purpose of this option is to allow system dependent VT initialisation commands to be run. This option should rarely be needed. Default: not set.
Option "VTSysReq" "boolean"
enables the SYSV-style VT switch sequence for non-SYSV systems which support VT switching. This sequence is Alt-SysRq followed by a function key (Fn). This prevents the X server trapping the keys used for the default VT switch sequence, which means that clients can access them. Default: off.
Option "XkbDisable" "boolean"
disable/enable the XKEYBOARD extension. The -kb command line option overrides this config file option. Default: XKB is enabled.
Option "BlankTime" "time"
sets the inactivity timeout for the blanking phase of the screensaver. time is in minutes. This is equivalent to the Xserver's `-s' flag, and the value can be changed at run-time with xset(1). Default: 10 minutes.
Option "StandbyTime" "time"
sets the inactivity timeout for the "standby" phase of DPMS mode. time is in minutes, and the value can be changed at run-time with xset(1). Default: 20 minutes. This is only suitable for VESA DPMS compatible monitors, and may not be supported by all video drivers. It is only enabled for screens that have the "DPMS" option set (see the MONITOR section below).
Option "SuspendTime" "time"
sets the inactivity timeout for the "suspend" phase of DPMS mode. time is in minutes, and the value can be changed at run-time with xset(1). Default: 30 minutes. This is only suitable for VESA DPMS compatible monitors, and may not be supported by all video drivers. It is only enabled for screens that have the "DPMS" option set (see the MONITOR section below).
Option "OffTime" "time"
sets the inactivity timeout for the "off" phase of DPMS mode. time is in minutes, and the value can be changed at run-time with xset(1). Default: 40 minutes. This is only suitable for VESA DPMS compatible monitors, and may not be supported by all video drivers. It is only enabled for screens that have the "DPMS" option set (see the MONITOR section below).
Option "Pixmap" "bpp"
This sets the pixmap format to use for depth 24. Allowed values for bpp are 24 and 32. Default: 32 unless driver constraints don't allow this (which is rare). Note: some clients don't behave well when this value is set to 24.
Option "PC98" "boolean"
Specify that the machine is a Japanese PC-98 machine. This should not be enabled for anything other than the Japanese-specific PC-98 architecture. Default: auto-detected.
Option "NoPM" "boolean"
Disables something to do with power management events. Default: PM enabled on platforms that support it.
Option "Xinerama" "boolean"
enable or disable XINERAMA extension. Default is disabled.
Option "AllowDeactivateGrabs" "boolean"
This option enables the use of the Ctrl+Alt+Keypad-Divide key sequence to deactivate any active keyboard and mouse grabs. Default: off.
Option "AllowClosedownGrabs" "boolean"
This option enables the use of the Ctrl+Alt+Keypad-Multiply key sequence to kill clients with an active keyboard or mouse grab as well as killing any application that may have locked the server, normally using the XGrabServer(3x) Xlib function. Default: off.
Note that the options AllowDeactivateGrabs and AllowClosedownGrabs will allow users to remove the grab used by screen saver/locker programs. An API was written to such cases. If you enable this option, make sure your screen saver/locker is updated.
Option "HandleSpecialKeys" "when"
This option controls when the server uses the builtin handler to process special key combinations (such as Ctrl+Alt+Backspace). Normally the XKEYBOARD extension keymaps will provide mappings for each of the special key combinations, so the builtin handler is not needed unless the XKEYBOARD extension is disabled. The value of when can be Always, Never, or WhenNeeded. Default: Use the builtin handler only if needed. The server will scan the keymap for a mapping to the Terminate action and, if found, use XKEYBOARD for processing actions, otherwise the builtin handler will be used.
 

MODULE SECTION

The Module section is used to specify which X server modules should be loaded. This section is ignored when the X server is built in static form. The types of modules normally loaded in this section are X server extension modules, and font rasteriser modules. Most other module types are loaded automatically when they are needed via other mechanisms.

Entries in this section may be in two forms. The first and most commonly used form is an entry that uses the Load keyword, as described here:

Load "modulename"
This instructs the server to load the module called modulename. The module name given should be the module's standard name, not the module file name. The standard name is case-sensitive, and does not include the "lib" prefix, or the ".a", ".o", or ".so" suffixes.

Example: the Type 1 font rasteriser can be loaded with the following entry:

Load "type1"

The second form of entry is a SubSection, with the subsection name being the module name, and the contents of the SubSection being Options that are passed to the module when it is loaded.

Example: the extmod module (which contains a miscellaneous group of server extensions) can be loaded, with the XFree86-DGA extension disabled by using the following entry:

SubSection "extmod"
   Option  "omit XFree86-DGA"
EndSubSection

Modules are searched for in each directory specified in the ModulePath search path, and in the drivers, input, extensions, fonts, and internal subdirectories of each of those directories. In addition to this, operating system specific subdirectories of all the above are searched first if they exist.

To see what font and extension modules are available, check the contents of the following directories:

/usr/X11R6/lib/modules/fonts
/usr/X11R6/lib/modules/extensions

The "bitmap" font modules is loaded automatically. It is recommended that at very least the "extmod" extension module be loaded. If it isn't some commonly used server extensions (like the SHAPE extension) will not be available.  

INPUTDEVICE SECTION

The config file may have multiple InputDevice sections. There will normally be at least two: one for the core (primary) keyboard, and one of the core pointer.

InputDevice sections have the following format:

Section "InputDevice"
    Identifier "name"
    Driver     "inputdriver"
    options
    ...
EndSection

The Identifier entry specifies the unique name for this input device. The Driver entry specifies the name of the driver to use for this input device. When using the loadable server, the input driver module "inputdriver" will be loaded for each active InputDevice section. An InputDevice section is considered active if it is referenced by an active ServerLayout section, or if it is referenced by the -keyboard or -pointer command line options. The most commonly used input drivers are "keyboard" and "mouse".

InputDevice sections recognise some driver-independent Options, which are described here. See the individual input driver manual pages for a description of the device-specific options.

Option "CorePointer"
When this is set, the input device is installed as the core (primary) pointer device. There must be exactly one core pointer. If this option is not set here, or in the ServerLayout section, or from the -pointer command line option, then the first input device that is capable of being used as a core pointer will be selected as the core pointer. This option is implicitly set when the obsolete Pointer section is used.
Option "CoreKeyboard"
When this is set, the input device is to be installed as the core (primary) keyboard device. There must be exactly one core keyboard. If this option is not set here, in the ServerLayout section, or from the -keyboard command line option, then the first input device that is capable of being used as a core keyboard will be selected as the core keyboard. This option is implicitly set when the obsolete Keyboard section is used.
Option "AlwaysCore" "boolean"
Option "SendCoreEvents" "boolean"
Both of these options are equivalent, and when enabled cause the input device to always report core events. This can be used, for example, to allow an additional pointer device to generate core pointer events (like moving the cursor, etc).
Option "HistorySize" "number"
Sets the motion history size. Default: 0.
Option "SendDragEvents" "boolean"
???
 

DEVICE SECTION

The config file may have multiple Device sections. There must be at least one, for the video card being used.

Device sections have the following format:

Section "Device"
    Identifier "name"
    Driver     "driver"
    entries
    ...
EndSection

The Identifier entry specifies the unique name for this graphics device. The Driver entry specifies the name of the driver to use for this graphics device. When using the loadable server, the driver module "driver" will be loaded for each active Device section. A Device section is considered active if it is referenced by an active Screen section.

Device sections recognise some driver-independent entries and Options, which are described here. Not all drivers make use of these driver-independent entries, and many of those that do don't require them to be specified because the information is auto-detected. See the individual graphics driver manual pages for further information about this, and for a description of the device-specific options. Note that most of the Options listed here (but not the other entries) may be specified in the Screen section instead of here in the Device section.

BusID "bus-id"
This specifies the bus location of the graphics card. For PCI/AGP cards, the bus-id string has the form PCI:bus:device:function (e.g., "PCI:1:0:0" might be appropriate for an AGP card). This field is usually optional in single-head configurations when using the primary graphics card. In multi-head configurations, or when using a secondary graphics card in a single-head configuration, this entry is mandatory. Its main purpose is to make an unambiguous connection between the device section and the hardware it is representing. This information can usually be found by running the X server with the -scanpci command line option.
Screen number
This option is mandatory for cards where a single PCI entity can drive more than one display (i.e., multiple CRTCs sharing a single graphics accelerator and video memory). One Device section is required for each head, and this parameter determines which head each of the Device sections applies to. The legal values of number range from 0 to one less than the total number of heads per entity. Most drivers require that the primary screen (0) be present.
Chipset "chipset"
This usually optional entry specifies the chipset used on the graphics board. In most cases this entry is not required because the drivers will probe the hardware to determine the chipset type. Don't specify it unless the driver-specific documentation recommends that you do.
Ramdac "ramdac-type"
This optional entry specifies the type of RAMDAC used on the graphics board. This is only used by a few of the drivers, and in most cases it is not required because the drivers will probe the hardware to determine the RAMDAC type where possible. Don't specify it unless the driver-specific documentation recommends that you do.
DacSpeed speed
DacSpeed speed-8 speed-16 speed-24 speed-32
This optional entry specifies the RAMDAC speed rating (which is usually printed on the RAMDAC chip). The speed is in MHz. When one value is given, it applies to all framebuffer pixel sizes. When multiple values are give, they apply to the framebuffer pixel sizes 8, 16, 24 and 32 respectively. This is not used by many drivers, and only needs to be specified when the speed rating of the RAMDAC is different from the defaults built in to driver, or when the driver can't auto-detect the correct defaults. Don't specify it unless the driver-specific documentation recommends that you do.
Clocks clock ...
specifies the pixel that are on your graphics board. The clocks are in MHz, and may be specified as a floating point number. The value is stored internally to the nearest kHz. The ordering of the clocks is important. It must match the order in which they are selected on the graphics board. Multiple Clocks lines may be specified, and each is concatenated to form the list. Most drivers do not use this entry, and it is only required for some older boards with non-programmable clocks. Don't specify this entry unless the driver-specific documentation explicitly recommends that you do.
ClockChip "clockchip-type"
This optional entry is used to specify the clock chip type on graphics boards which have a programmable clock generator. Only a few X servers support programmable clock chips. For details, see the appropriate X server manual page.
VideoRam mem
This optional entry specifies the amount of video ram that is installed on the graphics board. This is measured in kBytes. In most cases this is not required because the X server probes the graphics board to determine this quantity. The driver-specific documentation should indicate when it might be needed.
BiosBase baseaddress
This optional entry specifies the base address of the video BIOS for the VGA board. This address is normally auto-detected, and should only be specified if the driver-specific documentation recommends it.
MemBase baseaddress
This optional entry specifies the memory base address of a graphics board's linear frame buffer. This entry is not used by many drivers, and it should only be specified if the driver-specific documentation recommends it.
IOBase baseaddress
This optional entry specifies the IO base address. This entry is not used by many drivers, and it should only be specified if the driver-specific documentation recommends it.
ChipID id
This optional entry specifies a numerical ID representing the chip type. For PCI cards, it is usually the device ID. This can be used to override the auto-detection, but that should only be done when the driver-specific documentation recommends it.
ChipRev rev
This optional entry specifies the chip revision number. This can be used to override the auto-detection, but that should only be done when the driver-specific documentation recommends it.
TextClockFreq freq
This optional entry specifies the pixel clock frequency that is used for the regular text mode. The frequency is specified in MHz. This is rarely used.
Options
Option flags may be specified in the Device sections. These include driver-specific options and driver-independent options. The former are described in the driver-specific documentation. Some of the latter are described below in the section about the Screen section, and they may also be included here.

 

VIDEOADAPTOR SECTION

Nobody wants to say how this works. Maybe nobody knows ...

 

MONITOR SECTION

The config file may have multiple Monitor sections. There must be at least one, for the monitor being used.

Monitor sections have the following format:

Section "Monitor"
    Identifier "name"
    entries
    ...
EndSection

The Identifier entry specifies the unique name for this monitor. The Monitor section provides information about the specifications of the monitor, monitor-specific Options, and information about the video modes to use with the monitor. Specifying video modes is optional because the server now has a built-in list of VESA standard modes. When modes are specified explicitly in the Monitor section (with the Modes, ModeLine, or UseModes keywords), built-in modes with the same names are not included. Built-in modes with different names are, however, still implicitly included.

The entries that may be used in Monitor sections are described below.

VendorName "vendor"
This optional entry specifies the monitor's manufacturer.
ModelName "model"
This optional entry specifies the monitor's model.
HorizSync horizsync-range
gives the range(s) of horizontal sync frequencies supported by the monitor. horizsync-range may be a comma separated list of either discrete values or ranges of values. A range of values is two values separated by a dash. By default the values are in units of kHz. They may be specified in MHz or Hz if MHz or Hz is added to the end of the line. The data given here is used by the X server to determine if video modes are within the specifications of the monitor. This information should be available in the monitor's handbook. If this entry is omitted, a default range of 28-33kHz is used.
VertRefresh vertrefresh-range
gives the range(s) of vertical refresh frequencies supported by the monitor. vertrefresh-range may be a comma separated list of either discrete values or ranges of values. A range of values is two values separated by a dash. By default the values are in units of Hz. They may be specified in MHz or kHz if MHz or kHz is added to the end of the line. The data given here is used by the X server to determine if video modes are within the specifications of the monitor. This information should be available in the monitor's handbook. If this entry is omitted, a default range of 43-72Hz is used.
DisplaySize width height
This optional entry gives the width and height, in millimetres, of the picture area of the monitor. If given this is used to calculate the horizontal and vertical pitch (DPI) of the screen.
Gamma gamma-value
Gamma red-gamma green-gamma blue-gamma
This is an optional entry that can be used to specify the gamma correction for the monitor. It may be specified as either a single value or as three separate RGB values. The values should be in the range 0.1 to 10.0, and the default is 1.0. Not all drivers are capable of using this information.
UseModes "modesection-id"
Include the set of modes listed in the Modes section called modesection-id. This make all of the modes defined in that section available for use by this monitor.
Mode name
This is an optional multi-line entry that can be used to provide definitions for video modes for the monitor. In most cases this isn't necessary because the built-in set of VESA standard modes will be sufficient. The Mode keyword indicates the start of a multi-line video mode description. The mode description is terminated with the EndMode keyword. The mode description consists of the following entries:
DotClock clock
is the dot (pixel) clock rate to be used for the mode.
HTimings hdisp hsyncstart hsyncend htotal
specifies the horizontal timings for the mode.
VTimings vdisp vsyncstart vsyncend vtotal
specifies the vertical timings for the mode.
Flags "flag" ...
specifies an optional set of mode flags, each of which is a separate string in double quotes. "Interlace" indicates that the mode is interlaced. "DoubleScan" indicates a mode where each scanline is doubled. "+HSync" and "-HSync" can be used to select the polarity of the HSync signal. "+VSync" and "-VSync" can be used to select the polarity of the VSync signal. "Composite" can be used to specify composite sync on hardware where this is supported. Additionally, on some hardware, "+CSync" and "-CSync" may be used to select the composite sync polarity.
HSkew hskew
specifies the number of pixels (towards the right edge of the screen) by which the display enable signal is to be skewed. Not all drivers use this information. This option might become necessary to override the default value supplied by the server (if any). "Roving" horizontal lines indicate this value needs to be increased. If the last few pixels on a scan line appear on the left of the screen, this value should be decreased.
VScan vscan
specifies the number of times each scanline is painted on the screen. Not all drivers use this information. Values less than 1 are treated as 1, which is the default. Generally, the "DoubleScan" Flag mentioned above doubles this value.
ModeLine "name" mode-description
This entry is a more compact version of the Mode entry, and it also can be used to specify video modes for the monitor. is a single line format for specifying video modes. In most cases this isn't necessary because the built-in set of VESA standard modes will be sufficient.

The mode-description is in four sections, the first three of which are mandatory. The first is the dot (pixel) clock. This is a single number specifying the pixel clock rate for the mode in MHz. The second section is a list of four numbers specifying the horizontal timings. These numbers are the hdisp, hsyncstart, hsyncend, and htotal values. The third section is a list of four numbers specifying the vertical timings. These numbers are the vdisp, vsyncstart, vsyncend, and vtotal values. The final section is a list of flags specifying other characteristics of the mode. Interlace indicates that the mode is interlaced. DoubleScan indicates a mode where each scanline is doubled. +HSync and -HSync can be used to select the polarity of the HSync signal. +VSync and -VSync can be used to select the polarity of the VSync signal. Composite can be used to specify composite sync on hardware where this is supported. Additionally, on some hardware, +CSync and -CSync may be used to select the composite sync polarity. The HSkew and VScan options mentioned above in the Modes entry description can also be used here.
Options
Some Option flags that may be useful to include in Monitor sections (when needed) include "DPMS", and "SyncOnGreen".

 

MODES SECTION

The config file may have multiple Modes sections, or none. These sections provide a way of defining sets of video modes independently of the Monitor sections. Monitor sections may include the definitions provided in these sections by using the UseModes keyword. In most cases the Modes sections are not necessary because the built-in set of VESA standard modes will be sufficient.

Modes sections have the following format:

Section "Modes"
    Identifier "name"
    entries
    ...
EndSection

The Identifier entry specifies the unique name for this set of mode descriptions. The other entries permitted in Modes sections are the Mode and ModeLine entries that are described above in the Monitor section.  

SCREEN SECTION

The config file may have multiple Screen sections. There must be at least one, for the "screen" being used. A "screen" represents the binding of a graphics device (Device section) and a monitor (Monitor section). A Screen section is considered "active" if it is referenced by an active ServerLayout section or by the -screen command line option. If neither of those is present, the first Screen section found in the config file is considered the active one.

Screen sections have the following format:

Section "Screen"
    Identifier "name"
    Device     "devid"
    Monitor    "monid"
    entries
    ...
    SubSection "Display"
       entries
       ...
    EndSubSection
    ...
EndSection

The Identifier entry specifies the unique name for this screen. The Screen section provides information specific to the whole screen, including screen-specific Options. In multi-head configurations, there will be multiple active Screen sections, one for each head. The entries available for this section are:

Device "device-id"
This specifies the Device section to be used for this screen. This is what ties a specific graphics card to a screen. The device-id must match the Identifier of a Device section in the config file.
Monitor "monitor-id"
specifies which monitor description is to be used for this screen.
VideoAdaptor "xv-id"
specifies an optional Xv video adaptor description to be used with this screen.
DefaultDepth depth
specifies which color depth the server should use by default. The -depth command line option can be used to override this. If neither is specified, the default depth is driver-specific, but in most cases is 8.
DefaultFbBpp bpp
specifies which framebuffer layout to use by default. The -fbbpp command line option can be used to override this. In most cases the driver will chose the best default value for this. The only case where there is even a choice in this value is for depth 24, where some hardware supports both a packed 24 bit framebuffer layout and a sparse 32 bit framebuffer layout.
Options
Various Option flags may be specified in the Screen section. Some are driver-specific and are described in the driver documentation. Others are driver-independent, and will eventually be described here.
Option "Accel"
Enables XAA (X Acceleration Architecture), a mechanism that makes video cards' 2D hardware acceleration available to the X server. This option is on by default, but it may be necessary to turn it off if there are bugs in the driver. There are many options to disable specific acclerated operations, listed below. Note that disabling an operation will have no effect if the operation is not accelerated (whether due to lack of support in the hardware or in the driver).
Option "NoMTRR"
Disables MTRR (Memory Type Range Register) support, a feature of modern processors which can improve video performance by a factor of up to 2.5. Some hardware has buggy MTRR support, and some video drivers have been known to exhibit problems when MTRR's are used.
Option "XaaNoCPUToScreenColorExpandFill"
Disables accelerated rectangular expansion blits from source patterns stored in system memory (using a memory-mapped aperture).
Option "XaaNoColor8x8PatternFillRect"
Disables accelerated fills of a rectangular region with a full-color pattern.
Option "XaaNoColor8x8PatternFillTrap"
Disables accelerated fills of a trapezoidal region with a full-color pattern.
Option "XaaNoDashedBresenhamLine"
Disables accelerated dashed Bresenham line draws.
Option "XaaNoDashedTwoPointLine"
Disables accelerated dashed line draws between two arbitrary points.
Option "XaaNoImageWriteRect"
Disables acclerated transfers of full-color rectangular patterns from system memory to video memory (using a memory-mapped aperture).
Option "XaaNoMono8x8PatternFillRect"
Disables accelerated fills of a rectangular region with a monochrome pattern.
Option "XaaNoMono8x8PatternFillTrap"
Disables accelerated fills of a trapezoidal region with a monochrome pattern.
Option "XaaNoOffscreenPixmaps"
Disables accelerated draws into pixmaps stored in offscreen video memory.
Option "XaaNoPixmapCache"
Disables caching of patterns in offscreen video memory.
Option "XaaNoScanlineCPUToScreenColorExpandFill"
Disables accelerated rectangular expansion blits from source patterns stored in system memory (one scan line at a time).
Option "XaaNoScanlineImageWriteRect"
Disables acclerated transfers of full-color rectangular patterns from system memory to video memory (one scan line at a time).
Option "XaaNoScreenToScreenColorExpandFill"
Disables accelerated rectangular expansion blits from source patterns stored in offscreen video memory.
Option "XaaNoScreenToScreenCopy"
Disables accelerated copies of rectangular regions from one part of video memory to another part of video memory.
Option "XaaNoSolidBresenhamLine"
Disables accelerated solid Bresenham line draws.
Option "XaaNoSolidFillRect"
Disables accelerated solid-color fills of rectangles.
Option "XaaNoSolidFillTrap"
Disables accelerated solid-color fills of Bresenham trapezoids.
Option "XaaNoSolidHorVertLine"
Disables accelerated solid horizontal and vertical line draws.
Option "XaaNoSolidTwoPointLine"
Disables accelerated solid line draws between two arbitrary points.

Each Screen section must contain one or more Display subsections. Those subsections provide depth/fbbpp specific configuration information, and the one chosen depends on the depth and/or fbbpp that is being used for the screen. The Display subsection format is described in the section below.

 

DISPLAY SUBSECTION

Each Screen section may have multiple Display subsections. There must be at least one, which matches the depth and/or fbbpp values that are being used for the screen. The "active" Display subsection is the first that matches the depth and/or fbbpp values being used.

Display subsections have the following format:

    SubSection "Display"
        Depth  depth
        entries
        ...
    EndSubSection

Depth depth
This entry specifies what colour depth the Display subsection is to be used for. This entry is usually mandatory, but it may be omitted in some cases providing an FbBpp entry is present. The range of depth values that are allowed depends on the driver. Most driver support 8, 15, 16 and 24. Some also support 1 and/or 4, and some may support other values (like 30). Note: depth means the number of bits in a pixel that are actually used to determine the pixel colour. 32 is not a valid depth value. Most hardware that uses 32 bits per pixel only uses 24 of them to hold the colour information, which means that the colour depth is 24, not 32.
FbBpp bpp
This entry specifies the framebuffer format this Display subsection is to be used for. This entry is only needed when providing depth 24 configurations that allow a choice between a 24 bpp packed framebuffer format and a 32bpp sparse framebuffer format. In most cases this entry should not be used.
Weight red-weight green-weight blue-weight
This optional entry specifies the relative RGB weighting to be used for a screen is being used at depth 16 for drivers that allow multiple formats. This may also be specified from the command line with the -weight option (see XFree86(1)).
Virtual xdim ydim
This optional entry specifies the virtual screen resolution to be used. xdim must be a multiple of either 8 or 16 for most drivers, and a multiple of 32 when running in monochrome mode. The given value will be rounded down if this is not the case. Video modes which are too large for the specified virtual size will be rejected. If this entry is not present, the virtual screen resolution will be set to accommodate all the valid video modes given in the Modes entry. Some drivers/hardware combinations do not support virtual screens. Refer to the appropriate driver-specific documentation for details.
ViewPort x0 y0
This optional entry sets the upper left corner of the initial display. This is only relevant when the virtual screen resolution is different from the resolution of the initial video mode. If this entry is not given, then the initial display will be centered in the virtual display area.
Modes "mode-name" ...
This entry is highly desirable for most drivers, and it specifies the list of video modes to use. Each mode-name specified must be in double quotes. They must correspond to those specified or referenced in the appropriate Monitor section (including implicitly referenced built-in VESA standard modes). The server will delete modes from this list which don't satisfy various requirements. The first valid mode in this list will be the default display mode for startup. The list of valid modes is converted internally into a circular list. It is possible to switch to the next mode with Ctrl+Alt+Keypad-Plus and to the previous mode with Ctrl+Alt+Keypad-Minus. When this entry is omitted, the largest valid mode referenced by the appropriate Monitor section will be used.
Visual "visual-name"
This optional entry sets the default root visual type. This may also be specified from the command line (see the Xserver(1) man page). The visual types available for depth 8 are (default is PseudoColor):

StaticGray
GrayScale
StaticColor
PseudoColor
TrueColor
DirectColor

The visual type available for the depths 15, 16 and 24 are (default is TrueColor):

TrueColor
DirectColor

Not all drivers support DirectColor at these depths.

The visual types available for the depth 4 are (default is StaticColor):

StaticGray
GrayScale
StaticColor
PseudoColor

The visual type available for the depth 1 (monochrome) is StaticGray.

Black red green blue
This optional entry allows the "black" colour to be specified. This is only supported at depth 1. The default is black.
White red green blue
This optional entry allows the "white" colour to be specified. This is only supported at depth 1. The default is white.
Options
Option flags may be specified in the Display subsections. These may include driver-specific options and driver-independent options. The former are described in the driver-specific documentation. Some of the latter are described above in the section about the Screen section, and they may also be included here.
 

SERVERLAYOUT SECTION

The config file may have multiple ServerLayout sections. A "server layout" represents the binding of one or more screens (Screen sections) and one or more input devices (InputDevice sections) to form a complete configuration. In multi-head configurations, it also specifies the relative layout of the heads. A ServerLayout section is considered "active" if it is referenced by the -layout command line option or by an Option "DefaultServerLayout" entry in the ServerFlags section (the former takes precedence over the latter). If those options are not used, the first ServerLayout section found in the config file is considered the active one. If no ServerLayout sections are present, the single active screen and two active (core) input devices are selected as described in the relevant sections above.

ServerLayout sections have the following format:

Section "ServerLayout"
    Identifier   "name"
    Screen       "screen-id"
    ...
    InputDevice  "idev-id"
    ...
    options
    ...
EndSection

The Identifier entry specifies the unique name for this server layout. The ServerLayout section provides information specific to the whole session, including session-specific Options. The ServerFlags options (described above) may be specified here, and ones given here override those given in the ServerFlags section.

The entries that may be used in this section are described here.

Screen screen-num "screen-id" position-information
One of these entries must be given for each screen being used in a session. The screen-id field is mandatory, and specifies the Screen section being referenced. The screen-num field is optional, and may be used to specify the screen number in multi-head configurations. When this field is omitted, the screens will be numbered in the order that they are listed in. The numbering starts from 0, and must be consecutive. The position-information field describes the way multiple screens are positioned. There are a number of different ways that this information can be provided:
x y
Absolute x y
These both specify that the upper left corner's coordinates are (x,y). The Absolute keyword is optional. Some older versions of XFree86 (4.2 and earlier) don't recognise the Absolute keyword, so it's safest to just specificy the coorindates without it.
RightOf "screen-id"
LeftOf "screen-id"
Above "screen-id"
Below "screen-id"
Relative "screen-id" x y
These give the screen's location relative to another screen. The first four position the screen immediately to the right, left, above or below the other screen. When positioning to the right or left, the top edges are aligned. When positioning above or below, the left edges are aligned. The Relative form specifies the offset of the screen's origin (upper left corner) relative to the origin of another screen.
InputDevice "idev-id" "option" ...
One of these entries must be given for each input device being used in a session. Normally at least two are required, one each for the core pointer and keyboard devices. The idev-id field is mandatory, and specifies the name of the InputDevice section being referenced. Multiple option fields may be specified, each in double quotes. The options permitted here are any that may also be given in the InputDevice sections. Normally only session-specific input device options would be used here. The most commonly used options are:

"CorePointer"
"CoreKeyboard"
"SendCoreEvents"

and the first two should normally be used to indicate the core pointer and core keyboard devices respectively.
Options
Any option permitted in the ServerFlags section may also be specified here. When the same option appears in both places, the value given here overrides the one given in the ServerFlags section.

Here is an example of a ServerLayout section for a dual headed configuration with two mice:

Section "ServerLayout"
    Identifier  "Layout 1"
    Screen      "MGA 1"
    Screen      "MGA 2" RightOf "MGA 1"
    InputDevice "Keyboard 1" "CoreKeyboard"
    InputDevice "Mouse 1"    "CorePointer"
    InputDevice "Mouse 2"    "SendCoreEvents"
    Option      "BlankTime"  "5"
EndSection
 

DRI SECTION

This optional section is used to provide some information for the Direct Rendering Infrastructure. Details about the format of this section can be found in the README.DRI document, which is also available on-line at <http://www.xfree86.org/current/DRI>.  

VENDOR SECTION

The optional Vendor section may be used to provide vendor-specific configuration information. Multiple Vendor sections may be present, and they may contain an Identifier entry and multiple Option flags. The data therein is not used in this release.

 

FILES

For an example of an XF86Config file, see the file installed as /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/XF86Config.eg.  

SEE ALSO

X(7), Xserver(1), XFree86(1), apm(4), chips(4), cirrus(4), cyrix(4), fbdev(4), glide(4), glint(4), i128(4), i740(4), i810(4), imstt(4), mga(4), neomagic(4), nv(4), r128(4), rendition(4), savage(4), s3virge(4), siliconmotion(4), sis(4), sunbw2(4), suncg14(4), suncg3(4), suncg6(4), sunffb(4), sunleo(4), suntcx(4), tdfx(4), tga(4), trident(4), tseng(4), v4l(4), vesa(4), vga(4), vmware(4),
README <http://www.xfree86.org/current/README>,
RELNOTES <http://www.xfree86.org/current/RELNOTES>,
README.mouse <http://www.xfree86.org/current/mouse>,
README.DRI <http://www.xfree86.org/current/DRI>,
Status <http://www.xfree86.org/current/Status>,
Install <http://www.xfree86.org/current/Install>.  

AUTHORS

This manual page was largely rewritten for XFree86 4.0 by David Dawes <dawes@xfree86.org>.


 

Index

NAME
DESCRIPTION
FILES SECTION
SERVERFLAGS SECTION
MODULE SECTION
INPUTDEVICE SECTION
DEVICE SECTION
VIDEOADAPTOR SECTION
MONITOR SECTION
MODES SECTION
SCREEN SECTION
DISPLAY SUBSECTION
SERVERLAYOUT SECTION
DRI SECTION
VENDOR SECTION
FILES
SEE ALSO
AUTHORS

This document was created by man2html using the manual pages.
Time: 17:33:03 GMT, October 23, 2013

2. XF86Config.7.man

Manpage of XF86Config

XF86Config

Section: Environments, Tables, and Troff Macros (7)
Updated: 2002-10-24
Index Return to Main Contents
 

NAME

XF86Config - XFree86 X server configuration  

DESCRIPTION

The Debian system supports simultaneous installation of XFree86 version 3 and version 4 servers. To accomodate this simultaneity, the names of several utilities and manual pages had to be changed from their upstream defaults.  

XFree86 3.x Server Configuration

Version 3 XFree86 X server packages include:
xserver-3dlabs
xserver-8514
xserver-agx
xserver-fbdev
xserver-i128
xserver-mach32
xserver-mach64
xserver-mach8
xserver-mono
xserver-p9000
xserver-s3
xserver-s3v
xserver-svga
xserver-tga
xserver-vga16
xserver-w32

Information common to all version 3 XFree86 X servers is available in the XFree86-v3(1x) manual page. The format of the version 3 server configuration file is given in XF86Config-v3(5x), and the upstream, text-based configuration tool for version 3 servers is documented in xf86config-v3(1x). Note, however, that usage of the debconf configuration process is preferred. To reconfigure the X server using debconf, simply run:

dpkg-reconfigure package

Where package is one of the above listed packages (whichever is appropriate for your hardware).

In the Debian system, the only supported location for the XFree86 3.x server configuration file is /etc/X11/XF86Config. The X server programs will look in a variety of locations, but /etc/X11/XF86Config is the only one supported by Debian for the server packages listed above. The reason for this strict policy is to reduce confusion.

When reporting bugs to the Debian Bug Tracking System in any of the above listed packages, be sure to include a copy of your /etc/X11/XF86Config file in the bug report. If possible, please also include the X server ouput, which can be preserved by redirecting to a file. For instance:

startx > $HOME/xserver.log 2>&1
Many problems with the X server are the result of poor configuration. Furthermore, this information aids the Debian Developers in determining your hardware scenario.

Finally, keep in mind that most modern hardware is better supported by the version 4 XFree86 server, packaged as xserver-xfree86. The version 3 servers are no longer maintained upstream, and it is unlikely that bugs in those servers will ever be fixed. (Debian packaging issues will continue to be addressed by the Debian package maintainer.)

For information about the status of support for various video chipsets in XFree86 version 4, see <http://www.xfree86.org/current/Status>. Keep in mind that it takes time for new versions of XFree86 to be packaged for Debian; see <http://people.debian.org/~branden/xsf> for packaging progress reports.  

XFree86 4.x Server Configuration

There is only one server package for XFree86 4.x, xserver-xfree86, corresponding to the single server binary. (Modules supporting various hardware are loaded on demand by the server, and most XFree86 server modules that exist are available as part of the package.)

Information about the XFree86 X server is available in the XFree86(1x) manual page. The format of the version 4 server configuration file is given in XF86Config-4(5x), and the upstream, text-based configuration tool for the version 4 server is documented in xf86config(1x), Note, however, that usage of the debconf configuration process is preferred. To reconfigure the X server using debconf, simply run:

dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xfree86

In the Debian system, the only supported location for the XFree86 4.x server configuration file is /etc/X11/XF86Config-4. The XFree86 server program will look in a variety of locations, but /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 is the only one supported by Debian for xserver-xfree86. The reason for this strict policy is to reduce confusion.

When reporting bugs to the Debian Bug Tracking System in xserver-xfree86, be sure to include a copy of your /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 and /var/log/XFree86.0.log (or whichever log file the X server used - see XFree86(1x)) files in the bug report. Many problems with the X server are the result of poor configuration. Furthermore, this information aids the Debian Developers in determining your hardware scenario.  

SEE ALSO

XF86Config-4(5x), XF86Config-v3(5x), XFree86(1x), XFree86-v3(1x), xf86config(1x), xf86config-v3(1x), dpkg-reconfigure(8)


 

Index

NAME
DESCRIPTION
XFree86 3.x Server Configuration
XFree86 4.x Server Configuration
SEE ALSO

This document was created by man2html using the manual pages.
Time: 17:33:03 GMT, October 23, 2013

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