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#1 2019-03-17 09:18:52

leonardodo
Member
Registered: 2019-03-17
Posts: 6

lock most settings and whisker configuration

I'm setting up a shared PC for a school. Since it will be a single user box (I know...) I must prevent people from messing up with the desktop configuration.

I read about kiosk mode and used it to disable session save on logout. I managed to lock the panel via per-channel global settings as described here. I've also hidden all settings in the menu.

What I'd like to do next is provide a good whisker-menu configuration and lock it. Right now the panel is locked so there's no easy way to access the whisker-menu settings but random users can still add apps to the desktop or remove apps from my "curated" favourite list. I want to prevent this.

I tried chmod -w ~/.config/xfce4/panel/whiskermenu-1.rc with no success: apps can still be removed and when logging out and in again the file is still +w. Disabling right click should do but I'd rather avoid disabling it for the whole desktop.

Is there some way to accomplish what I need?

Thanks!
Leonardo

Last edited by leonardodo (2019-03-17 13:01:38)

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#2 2019-03-17 13:46:38

leonardodo
Member
Registered: 2019-03-17
Posts: 6

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

I'm more and more convinced that the only viable solution is to disable right-click. With a locked panel and half-hidden settings people can still:

  • add and remove apps to the desktop

  • add and remove apps from the whisker-menu favourites

  • edit app launchers

  • mess with the desktop (unless I disable icons but I want home and trash to stay)

Maybe I can try to lock desktop and menu - as I did with the panel - but I failed so far (I copied a good xfce-desktop.xml file from a template user to /etc/xdg/xfce4/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml/ and added a lock).

Am I missing something?

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#3 2019-03-17 14:12:49

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,378

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

Have you seen this document? I'm not sure if it answers all of your questions, but it does talk about securing some aspects of the desktop.

There are also the following posts that might be useful:
- https://forum.xfce.org/viewtopic.php?pid=47510 - disabling the desktop right-click by using a build parameter
- https://forum.xfce.org/viewtopic.php?id=7764 - a kiosk mode howto

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#4 2019-03-17 14:47:45

leonardodo
Member
Registered: 2019-03-17
Posts: 6

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

ToZ wrote:

Have you seen this document? I'm not sure if it answers all of your questions, but it does talk about securing some aspects of the desktop.

I did and use what could apply.

There are also the following posts that might be useful:
- https://forum.xfce.org/viewtopic.php?pid=47510 - disabling the desktop right-click by using a build parameter
- https://forum.xfce.org/viewtopic.php?id=7764 - a kiosk mode howto

I had read them too but I'm not willing to build xfdesktop myself and the howto is too generic.

Anyway I reconsidered disabling right click; it may be needed for some applications where people expect it to work and I have both mouse and touchpad go manage. So that's what I did:
- switched from whisker-menu to applicationsmenu (no offending right clicks)
- hid all submenus and most applications while moving the relevant one in the top level
- no icons in the desktop (I lose home and trash but there's no other easy way to disable right-click menus)
- locked the panel again for that user

That's the result:
Schermata-del-2019-03-17-15-42-56.png

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#5 2019-03-17 15:01:10

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,378

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

leonardodo wrote:

- no icons in the desktop (I lose home and trash but there's no other easy way to disable right-click menus)

How about adding a Home launcher and the Trash panel applet to the panel? Not exactly the same as having it on the desktop, but makes it more accessible.

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#6 2019-03-17 16:21:35

leonardodo
Member
Registered: 2019-03-17
Posts: 6

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

ToZ wrote:
leonardodo wrote:

- no icons in the desktop (I lose home and trash but there's no other easy way to disable right-click menus)

How about adding a Home launcher and the Trash panel applet to the panel? Not exactly the same as having it on the desktop, but makes it more accessible.

It won't do. They're not expected to be there and discoverability is bad. Users can get there with the File Manager as well. I'll write down some notes, maybe on the wallpaper itself.

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#7 2019-03-17 17:21:17

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 6,378

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

How about creating a second panel on the bottom of the screen, opacity set to 0 and intelligently hide enabled, a launcher (thunar) on the left side and the Trash applet on the right side separated by a transparent expanding separator (with Don't reserve space on borders checked)?
Screenshot-2019-03-17-13-12-47.png

Or place the panel wherever the icons normally are (it can be a floating panel).
Screenshot-2019-03-17-13-19-10.png

This second panel can be secured as the first is.

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#8 2019-03-17 20:16:17

leonardodo
Member
Registered: 2019-03-17
Posts: 6

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

It mimics the old setup perfectly but I fear it could break and I won't have support for removable devices anyway. I guess we'll do with a blank desktop a paper not on how to find files.

Thanks!

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#9 2019-03-17 20:18:44

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 778

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

Firefox has a number of applicable add-ons such as mKiosk that might be helpful.


MX-19 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.14.
My little collection: Xfce Tidbits

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#10 2019-03-18 14:41:07

leonardodo
Member
Registered: 2019-03-17
Posts: 6

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

Jerry3904 wrote:

Firefox has a number of applicable add-ons such as mKiosk that might be helpful.

That's for older versions of Firefox. What's the equivalent for FF > 57 ?

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#11 2019-03-18 15:21:23

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 778

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

Have to Google that, just a sec...here you go for Quantum:

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1191777

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefo … ern-kiosk/

Not sure if either of those will work as you want, but you might want to drill down in the search results.

Last edited by Jerry3904 (2019-03-18 15:28:07)


MX-19 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.14.
My little collection: Xfce Tidbits

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#12 2019-03-18 15:30:22

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 778

Re: lock most settings and whisker configuration

We have a Wiki entry that, though not recently updated, might contain some helpful stuff.

https://mxlinux.org/wiki/system/kiosk/


MX-19 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.14.
My little collection: Xfce Tidbits

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