Xwrapper.config - configuration options for X server wrapper


/etc/X11/Xwrapper.config contains a set of flags that determine some of the behavior of Debian's X server wrapper, which is installed on the system as /usr/bin/X . The purpose of the wrapper, and of this configuration file, is twofold.

Firstly, it is intended to implement sound security practices. Since the X server requires superuser privileges, it may be unwise to permit just any user on the system to execute it. Even if the X server is not exploitable in the sense of permitting ordinary users to gain elevated privileges, a poorly-written or insufficiently-tested hardware driver for the X server may cause bus lockups and freeze the system, an unpleasant experience for anyone using it at the time.

Secondly, a wrapper is a convenient place to set up an execution environment for the X server distinct from the configurable parameters of the X server itself.

Xwrapper.config may be edited by hand, but it is typically configured via

R debconf (7), the Debian configuration tool. The X server wrapper is part of the x11-common Debian package; therefore, the parameters of

Xwrapper.config may be changed with the command

R See

R dpkg-reconfigure (8) for more information.

The format of

Xwrapper.config is a text file containing a series of lines of the form

  • .IB name = value
        .PP where name is a variable name containing any combination of numbers, letters, or underscore (_) characters, and value is any combination of letters, numbers, underscores (_), or dashes (-). value may also contain spaces as long as there is at least one character from the list above bounding the space(s) on both sides. Whitespace before and after name , value , or the equals sign is legal but ignored. Any lines not matching the above described legal format are ignored. Note that this specification may change as the X server wrapper develops.

Available options are:


    may be set to one of the following values:

R rootonly ,

R console , or

R anybody .

rootonly indicates that only the root user may start the X server;

console indicates that root, or any user whose controlling TTY is a virtual console, may start the X server; and

anybody indicates that any user may start the X server.


The X server wrapper was written by Stephen Early, Mark Eichin, and Branden Robinson for the Debian Project, with valuable contributions from Erik Troan, Topi Miettinen, and Colin Phipps. This manual page was written by Branden Robinson with sponsorship from Progeny Linux Systems.


R debconf (7),

R dpkg-reconfigure (8)