GNOME Display Manager

GNOME Display Manager (GDM) is a display manager (a graphical login manager) for the windowing systems X11 and Wayland.

GNOME Display Manager
GNOME Display Manager default appearance in Dark mode
Developer(s)The GNOME Project (William Jon McCann, Brian Cameron, Ray Strode)
Stable release3.34.2[1] (25 November 2019 (2019-11-25)) [±]
Preview release3.35.2[2] (24 November 2019 (2019-11-24)) [±]
Written inC
Operating systemUnix-like
TypeLogin manager for Wayland, X display manager
LicenseGNU General Public License

The X Window System by default uses the XDM display manager. However, resolving XDM configuration issues typically involves editing a configuration file. GDM allows users to customize or troubleshoot settings without having to resort to a command line. Users can pick their session type on a per-login basis. GDM 2.38.0 is the last version that features customization with themes; subsequent releases do not support themes.

Software architecture

GDM is a display manager that implements all significant features required for managing attached and remote displays. GDM was written from scratch and does not contain any XDM or X Consortium code.[3]


GDM comprises the following components:

Hidden features

Until version 2.22,[4] GDM had a few Easter eggs, in the form of strings to be entered in the username box. These can be found in the source file "gui/guilogin.c", in a function named "evil".[5]

  • Dancing login – type "Start Dancing" to start, and "Stop Dancing" to stop.
    • (This requires the standard greeter ("GTK+ Greeter"), rather than the graphical one ("Themed Greeter")).
  • "Gimme Random Cursor" – can be used repeatedly.
    • This changes the mouse cursor to a randomly selected 1 of 77 different "cursor fonts" as defined in the X11 specification.
  • "Require Quarter" (or "Require Quater", for backward compatibility with a typo in the original),[6] then log in normally – a dialog box that reads "Please insert 25 cents to log in." appears after entering the password. Clicking "OK" allows the login process to proceed as normal.

Queen of England

Some of the copyright notices of GDM refer to the "Queen of England", whom release announcements from version 2.2.1 also named as a maintainer.[7] Subsequently, developers realised that the title "Queen of England" has not existed since the Acts of Union of 1707.[8]

See also


  1. Petridis, Jordan (25 November 2019). "GNOME 3.34.2 Released". GNOME Mail Services (Mailing list). Retrieved 14 December 2019.
  2. Catanzaro, Michael (24 November 2019). "GNOME 3.35.2 released". GNOME Mail Services (Mailing list). Retrieved 29 November 2019.
  3. "GDM documentation".
  4. "migrate gui to new config framework with a chainsaw". 1 June 2007. Retrieved 26 April 2014.
  5. "gdm – guilogin.c". Archived from the original on 31 May 2018. Retrieved 9 August 2018.
  6. "GDM commit ee8de912". 5 March 2001. Retrieved 26 August 2009.
  7. "ANNOUNCE: GDM 2.2.1, the 'Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not after you' release". 4 May 2001. Gdm2 was originally written by Martin K. Petersen <mkp mkp net>, and is now maintained by the Queen of England.
  8. "ANNOUNCE: GDM (unstable), the "Nose poking" release". 4 March 2004.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.