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#1 Desktop and Multimedia » Beowulf: how to remove xfce and install mate, without breaking system » 2020-09-29 04:03:42

Replies: 4

hello devuan team,
I have a virtualbox installation with beowulf xfce.

I want to try it with mate instead, however, as you can see above, xfce is already installed in this system.
what terminal commands or synaptic file selections do i have to add/choose/delete to remove/purge xfce and then install mate?

I hope this switch doesn't break the system.

waiting for your insightful input.

#2 Re: Devuan Derivatives » Release: Virage GNU/Linux: A Devuan-based distro for audio/video works » 2020-09-25 03:16:55

Hello Wamphyre,
I have evaluated virage during this time and i have liked it very much. However, i have a couple of questions/suggestions:

  • is there a chance to create/release virage with mate desktop environment?

even though i like the customized xfce interface installed, i want to test virage with mate; or,

  • if the above is not possible in the short term,  what commands or synaptic files should be added to have mate desktop installed, and then what files to uninstall to remove xfce without breaking the system?

waiting for your comments.

#3 Re: Other Issues » how to activate root gui at logon screen + problem with root password » 2020-09-22 04:17:36

Hello HoaS,
your approach was too advanced for me, so i went ahead and re-installed beowulf; it was easier for me that way, and it worked. Sudo is now working.

I am now able to access synaptic and make minor system modifications [like removing wicd, installing network manager and later editing network interfaces using pluma (mate's gedit)].
Question:  Is it possible to install network manager right at installation and at the same time remove wicd?

Now I'm trying to emulate my good old & reliable gnome 2.28 with the mate desktop, and then do a side-by-side comparison and taking notes on what to do to achieve this.
One advantage of installing beowulf this way is that you install the programs you need without having too much initial bloat.

Virage is a wonderful derivative with xfce, however, I am a big fan of gnome 2.28 for many years (gnome3 and up are awful) and mate is doing a superb attempt of preserving the look-and-feel of a proper desktop environment (I remember back in the Novell days with SLED10 that they performed usability surveys with several desktop environments and the most preferred one by the user surveyed was gnome 2.28, that is the reason it was default in that distribution since until gnome decided to update for the worse).

Suse also created a system tool called yast, in which it contains all system settings able to be modified by root with a nice graphical interface.
Does devuan offer a similar tool like this?  (see it here:

I want to thank everybody for your kind assistance, I'll keep asking more questions on this forum.

#4 Re: Other Issues » how to activate root gui at logon screen + problem with root password » 2020-09-21 02:38:26

Thanks guys for your hints. I deleted ascii and then installed beowulf i386 netInstall with mate desktop.
However, i kept having the same problem.

Apparently my username is not being added to the sudo group upon installation; and still doesn't accept my very simple root password neither in the terminal nor the pop-up message after clicking system>administration>synaptic.
This is very strange.

Thank you. I read the document. however i kept having problems in the terminal. Please read below:

$ groups
omar cdrom floppy audio dip video plugdev netdev bluetooth lpadmin scanner
$ sudo adduser omar sudo
[sudo] password for omar:
omar is not in the sudoers file. The incident will be reported.
$ sudo chvt 3
[sudo] password for omar:
omar is not in the sudoers file. The incident will be reported.
$ su  (or)  su -
su: Authentication failure
$ gpasswd -a omar sudo
gpasswd: Permission denied.

For the command above from HevyDevy, since it's a pound sign "#", means root, but i can't access root. my root password is rejected (authentication failure).

One of the suggestions I found in the page sent by HoaS, is to install again and then assign no password to root, so the first user created get sudo powers.

I will reinstall and then try this approach. Will share more news tomorrow.
Cheers devuan team

#5 Re: Other Issues » how to activate root gui at logon screen + problem with root password » 2020-09-20 04:29:31

hello chris2be8 & HOaS,
I have installed ascii i386 for comparison purposes and the same issues occurred. Synaptic doesn't accept my root password. I made sure this time that no strange characters were used.

i tried sudo -i in mate terminal and entered my password (not root's pw). then i received this message:

omar is not in the sudoers file. This incident will be reported.

I will try beowulf netInstall tomorrow to see what happens, although I would have.preferred for beowulf to have the graphical installation screen like ascii does.
i know because of another thread in the forum that beowulf doesn't provide a graphical installation screen. Also the minor pulse audio problem in the release notes.

Can you login as root at the console (TTY)?

How do i achieve this virtualbox?   since virtualbox provides desktop integration, unfortunately my keyboard is not fully captured by the guest OS and if I press a key combination, it applies it to the host OS. My mouse can be captured, though.

I know that in SLED11sp4 & opensuse, i can go to a full screen terminal by pressing  ctrl+alt+f1-6, and then go back to normal graphic screen with ctrl+alt+f7

I'm not helping you log into the graphical desktop as root because that's a stupid thing to do   tongue

i have been able to enter root gui in both SLED11sp4 & opensuse for all these years without doing anything special, it's just available right after first install.
probably devuan is able to do it as well somehow. if you know how, please send me a private message. i will really appreciate it since it's easier for me to handle system modifications this way. also, i'm the only one using this laptop, i'm sure i won't be messing up my own computer (i make manual monthly data back-ups in case my hard disk dies or something bad happens).

Thank you guys for helping out. Will share more updates after I install beowulf.


#6 Other Issues » how to activate root gui at logon screen + problem with root password » 2020-09-19 03:18:49

Replies: 9

hello devuan team.

I have finished evaluating virage 3.1 and I liked it very much (since it also allows the topic at hand straight away). It's now my candidate to replace my good old SLED11-sp4 in the near future.

However, I wanted to re-evaluate and give another chance to the original devuan. I have now installed ascii 2.1 x86-64 from netInstall with mate desktop environment in virtualBox.

I have found these issues:

#1  i want to remove wicd and install network manager (I achieved this in virage easily with the guide found in a post in the "freedom hacks" forum), however in 'mate', after i click "system >> administration >> synaptic package manager" and the password pop-up window appears, it doesn't accept neither the root password nor the normal user password, which is very weird.

#2  i can't use root at logon screen and then use the root gui desktop environment to make system modifications (like opensuse or virage). when i try root and root's password at this logon screen, it doesn't move forward. only my local user account works to go into the desktop environment. So, problem #1 can be solved if i have access to the root gui D-E.

#3  when i go into "mate terminal" and enter "su" and "su -", and then i enter the root password, the root password doesn't work either. it displays "authentication failure". am i doing something wrong?

I tried a hint that i read in another post in this forum to achieve root at login, yet that option did not work unfortunately.

what commands do i need to enter to make this work?
At the main 'mate' login screen I don't see any options to click and modify settings, only the username/password boxes. that's it.

have into account that i am not CLI savvy, I'm mostly a point-and-click user using linux consistently for 10 years.

i am going to try with i386 ascii netInstall instead of x86-64 to try to replicate the issues I have, and see where the problem lies.

thanks a lot guys for your input.

#7 Re: Devuan Derivatives » Refracta 10 issues with » 2020-08-14 02:43:03

Thank you guys for your kind comments & inputs.

i'll read/download those links and continue gaining knowledge in devuan

#8 Re: Devuan Derivatives » Refracta 10 issues with » 2020-08-13 04:18:32

hello labrona,

  • do you have a link where i can download refracta 9?

  • do you run it on ram by means of a dvd or usb?

  • how do you keep the settings or installed programs when you decide the turn off or restart the computer?

  • what is the objective of using the firejail container?  what is the risk difference compared against not using it?

  • how do you install i2p in ascii?  how do you use/configure i2p?

  • does it add latency to your internet connection?

thank you for your comments. i'm new to the devuan world.

#9 Re: Desktop and Multimedia » xfce4-alsa-plugin now available for Debian-based systems (0.3.0-2) » 2020-07-29 03:04:24

excellent information Vernon, a detailed step-by-step newbie-friendly guide.
Very much appreciated, cheers.

#10 Re: Desktop and Multimedia » xfce4-alsa-plugin now available for Debian-based systems (0.3.0-2) » 2020-07-28 04:52:49

I am still using my old SLED11sp4 while still evaluating devuan as my next distribution. I have network manager installed and i haven't had any issues with it in years (no systemd, i'm using version 0.7.1). it manages ethernet, wifi's and vpn's with no issues at all.

  • what would happen if you installed network manager instead of wicd or supplicant from the repositories?

  • is it difficult due to the dependencies?

  • does it mess or not integrate seamlessly with your current desktop environment?

please let me know since i am interested in this topic. the devuan-based distributions i have evaluated install mostly wicd by default, yet i would rather have network manager installed instead. i once tried removing wicd and installing NM, but then no icons were shown on the notification area and i could not find a way to activate connections on the desktop.


#11 Re: Devuan Derivatives » Release: Virage GNU/Linux: A Devuan-based distro for audio/video works » 2020-07-17 04:51:32

Hello Salvador Wamphyre,
I am glad I came across your distribution and currently evaluating it in virtualbox. Wonderful job!!  I really like the desktop environment theme.
The dvd size is 1.8gb yet expanded on hard disk after installation is near 6 gb.

I am compiling a list of customization questions for virage/xfce, I will ask you and other forum members in due time if I can't find such answers online.

Warm regards/Un abrazo cordial.

#12 Off-topic » New forum member » 2020-07-17 04:40:55

Replies: 9

Hello devuan team,
I am a new registered member in the forums, although I have been lurking from the outside since early 2019.

I am currently using one of the best linux distributions for normal *gui* people: suse linux enterprise desktop 11 sp4 with gnome 2.28
This is the last version without systemd (by the way, I do only a few commands in the terminal, like installing rpms, converting files with ffmpeg, and a few more but that's it).
I also like that I can use root gui for some admin tasks. I am the only user in this laptop and access to gui root is essential.

Some history: began with computers as a savvy end user since the win3.1 days (1997), in those days quake1 and duke nukem 3d were huge hits.

I started timidly using linux back in 2004 with suse linux personal 9.1 and then dropped it after a few months and went back to windows.
When opensuse 10.3 appeared on the scene, I decided to return and check it out, and started using it more frequently; when SLED10 was released, I went ahead and installed it (around 2010), at this point I had moved definitely to linux, like 99.5% of the time consistently since that time. Later I installed SLED11 and stayed there until now.

Unfortunately, it's showing its age, I haven't updated any programs for more than 3 years (end of life); and even tough it's still performing great, I can't stay here forever; and since last year I'm evaluating other linux options.
New distro versions are now coming with systemd, and I would rather continue with a proven init system and not use one that wants to become another svchost.exe

I evaluated recently opensuse 15.2 with mate desktop and it looks awesome, but the fact that systemd is inside doing its thing, it doesn't make me comfortable. Then I started checking more on devuan.

I evaluated initially devuan 3 beowulf with mate desktop inside virtualbox, but got no sound (I know, the release notes, yet remember that i am not not a command-line-interface individual so i did not know how to fix it neither I tried to venture. When I had issues like this, I used to go to root gui and open gedit, and make the modifications).

Then I installed devuan 2.1 ascii with mate and later cinnamon. These were better options for me, however, not having access as root in a gui, it's an important item to check on my list.

Then, I commenced to review derivatives, I probably tried like 6-8 of them, not finding one that I liked. Then other systemd-free distros, like pcLinuxOS, Alpine, Void and others.

Right before I gave up and went for opensuse again, recently came across with devuan virage linux 3.1. This one is based on beowulf with xfce, although with newer kernel; lots of music applications (audio is not my thing, but the desktop environment layout looks great) and I'm able to sign in as root. Yay!

It has a weird way to install on disk yet it works great in virtualbox and I am happily evaluating it; I am trying to get around the synaptics package manager gui and customizing xfce, it's the first time i'm using it after more than a decade with gnome.
I already installed firefox and removed chromium as practice.
So this might be the option I was looking for. I am trying to get more acquainted with it over the days. So you will be reading more from me asking questions since I don't have any devuan/debian background.

After this learning phase and later feeling more comfortable around it, I can go ahead and install devuan in 3 more family computers (my brother's [x2] and dad's; all using opensuse at the moment).

As a final comment, I am happy in finally joining the forums and  participate whenever required.

Greetings from Colombia.

If you have any hints/tips in how to customize xfce desktop environment (plugins?) to look more like gnome 2.28/mate, your comments are more than welcome, since me, my brother and dad are used to this layout for years as well, we are 100% gui point-and-click people. Cheers everyone.

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