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#1 2018-01-05 19:22:04

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

I have installed Debian 9.x (Stretch) via the netinst CD and the live CD on two different machines, one virtual. In both cases, I selected XFCE 4.12 for my GUI. In both cases the first thing I tried to do was change the background to a collection of photos. These photos work just fine under XFCE 4.10 on Debian 8.10 (jessie).

Here is what I have tried, similar to what I am accustomed to on 4.10.

* Right click on the desktop.

* From that menu, select "Desktop Settings" --> Background tab. (The resulting tab looks rather different in 4.12 than in 4.10.)

* In the Folder pull-down menu, select "Other...". This produces a file chooser.

* I cannot select any entries; they are all grayed out. If I go to the top left row of buttons representing the current path, and select "images" I cannot select "desktop-base", which was the prior selection.

In scrounging through the Internet I have found the advice to be sure that xfdesktop is running. It is. And to be sure that there are no other window managers running. Nautilus is not running. However, libnautilus-extension1a version 3.22.3-1+deb9u1 is present.

root@stretch:~# ps aux | egrep \(desk\|nautilus\)
charles    679  0.0  2.0 511180 41248 ?        Sl   11:22   0:00 xfdesktop
root@stretch:~# pre nautilus
libnautilus-extension1a    3.22.3-1+deb9u1        amd64
root@stretch:~#

In the session manager, I see that xfsettingsd and xfdesktop are scheduled to autostart, and are running. I see no mention of nautilus.

So, two questions:

* What, if any, changes should I make to my current file of pictures (/home/charles/.config/xfce4/desktop/backdrop.list) so I can use it under 4.12?

* Having made those changes, how do I get 4.12 to accept them?

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#2 2018-01-05 19:37:42

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 611

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

I cannot select any entries; they are all grayed out.

Lots of people get flummoxed by this. The software expects you to select the folder, not the individual wallpapers. Once the folder has been selected and the Open button clicked, then the wallpapers will show in the window when you return, and you select them individually from there.


MX-17 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.12.

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#3 2018-01-05 20:04:51

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

Right. How do you select a folder if they are all grayed out? I've tried selecting folders and files, even previously selected folders. No go on any of them.

Just for an example: If I select "share" in the path row at the top, that puts me in /usr/share. Fine so far. If I then try selecting "images", I get no feedback from the UI that it has noticed my mouse click. If I then click on "open", I see that I am in /usr/share, and have no images in the UI. I have no way to select "images". So I can go up but not down the path /usr/share/etc.

If having played around with this, I finally close out the application "Desktop Settings", my background remains the one previously selected, the default. The next time I open "Desktop Settings", I am back at the default. No change.

Last edited by theOtherCharles (2018-01-05 20:19:30)

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#4 2018-01-05 21:33:33

ozjd
Member
From: Hawkesbury NSW Australia
Registered: 2012-02-05
Posts: 461
Website

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

There was a bug that caused this and it has been fixed but I can't remember which package needs to be updated.

However there is a work around using Thunar. In Thunar navigate to the directory and select one of the images you wish to use. Right clcik and there is an option to 'set as wallpaper'. Then you will see that directory displayed in the Desktop Settings. A bit clunky but it works.

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#5 2018-01-05 22:26:45

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

ozjid wrote:

There was a bug that caused this and it has been fixed but I can't remember which package needs to be updated.

Ah. I am on Debian Stretch, and just installed and updated my test machine today, so the fix has not yet hit the main Stretch repos. I don't see any XFCE packages in Stretch backports, either. So I shall wait a while.

ozjid wrote:

However there is a work around using Thunar. In Thunar navigate to the directory and select one of the images you wish to use. Right clcik and there is an option to 'set as wallpaper'. Then you will see that directory displayed in the Desktop Settings. A bit clunky but it works.

Indeed, that works.

If you select one image from a directory with several, you can go back to the "Desktop Settings" Background tab, and set it to change the background from time to time, and that works. So that should solve my problem.

Thank you.

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#6 2018-01-05 23:56:43

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

Arrgghh. I spoke too soon. That does not work with multiple monitors. Thunar sets the wallpaper on the left-hand monitor, and has no option to select another monitor to place it on.

Ristrettro claims to give you a choice as to which monitor to set, but doesn't set either one!

But this was an excellent start. Thanks

Last edited by theOtherCharles (2018-01-06 00:14:07)

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#7 2018-01-06 17:56:48

Clio
Member
Registered: 2011-01-25
Posts: 67

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

Copy your desired image to /usr/share/backgrounds/xfce/
Only in this directory a selection can be made, all other directories are not selectable.

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#8 2018-01-06 18:53:07

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

clio wrote:

Copy your desired image to /usr/share/backgrounds/xfce/
Only in this directory a selection can be made, all other directories are not selectable.

Thanks. But I cannot even select that directory.

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#9 2018-01-07 14:13:34

Clio
Member
Registered: 2011-01-25
Posts: 67

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

You must select exactly this directory as root, sure, then copy the .png or .jpg into it.
As user go to settings - desktop -  and choose your picture. That's all.
That's how it works in my Debian Sid.

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#10 2018-01-07 19:08:18

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

clio wrote:

You must select exactly this directory as root,...

Now you tell me. :-)

I can't even select anything as root. I am running stretch, not sid. So I suspect you have the fix for the bug Ozjid mentioned. I am on xfce4 4.12.3.

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#11 2018-01-08 08:56:00

cybercop
Member
Registered: 2018-01-08
Posts: 2

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

Settings Manager>>Settings Editor>>xfce4-desktop>>Workspace0>>last-image>>copy the path to image from the user directory.
https://s25.postimg.org/kqfs4i6hb/wallpapers.png
You will never have this problem again in Stretch.

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#12 2018-01-08 19:01:14

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

cybercop wrote:

Settings Manager>>Settings Editor>>xfce4-desktop>>Workspace0>>last-image>>copy the path to image from the user directory.
https://s25.postimg.org/kqfs4i6hb/wallpapers.png
You will never have this problem again in Stretch.

Thank you. That appears to work. It does not solve the second monitor issue, though.

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#13 2018-01-08 19:02:59

theOtherCharles
Member
Registered: 2018-01-05
Posts: 17

Re: xfce 4.12 on Debian Stretch: Cannot set background using file selector

theOtherCharles wrote:

Arrgghh. I spoke too soon. That does not work with multiple monitors. Thunar sets the wallpaper on the left-hand monitor, and has no option to select another monitor to place it on.

I think I have a work-around for that. Use alternatives (package galternatives for a gui) to set the alternative "desktop-background" to a suitable image.

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