XFCE 2+ monitors break xfsettingsd with 2019-08-13 update


various xfce settings and parts of them theme were broken on my laptop with the last stable upgrade. This seems to be the same like this old thread: It was fixable by logging out, restarting and starting xfsettingsd multiple times each (!) and now all of a sudden, the desktop is fixed for good.

I really dont know how to make sense out of all of this and got to fix it but I thought I'd report it anyway.

Edit: As explained below, all of this is triggered by connecting monitors.


I was struggling to find a solution for this and actually listed all the issues I had to ask for help here, so I will attach them here hoping it will help.

  • XFCE Shortcuts do not work anymore (nothing happens). Even default ones like Alt+F2. Cannot even be resolved by reassigning :/. Window manager shortcuts DO work, however
  • Certain windows are not styled according to the selected theme anymore. Example: Thunar in the very background is themed properly but the other ones arent. Only the window title bars have their styling preserved. (selected theme is this but I doubt it matters)
  • Theme live reload in "Appearance" setting does not work anymore - need to issue xfsettingsd --replace manually
  • Keyboard layout reset
  • Mouse / touchpad settings reset
  • Changing mouse settings is impossible with the gui. Like Appearance, the changes do not apply in real time, but even more so, closing and reopening the window shows that any changed settings are reset
  • Manjaro keyboard settings: Preview test input area does not reflect the selected keyboard layout. Only after applying the changes (which prompts for password), the selected layout can be tested.
  • Desktop background was reset
  • xfce4-display-settings crashes, but this is already reported and probably unrelated

Notifications do work.

Have you replaced the xfce packages with the equivalent -gtk3 packages?

I don't think a mix will work well.

It seems the issue is still there and reproducable as soon as I connect a third monitor. In that case, xfsettingsd does not help either. Using two monitors works. I now remember too that connecting the monitors brought up all those problems in the first place. Might be related to the xfce4-display-manager crashes in the other thread linked above?

I think I am using the latest -gtk3 packages, as I am using the latest stable branch and have not explicitly installed any other one. Or was it required to ever upgrade those manually? Anyway, here's

pacman -Q | grep xfce
libxfce4ui-gtk3 4.14.1-1
libxfce4util-gtk3 4.14.0-1
xfce4-appfinder-gtk3 4.13.5-1
xfce4-battery-plugin 1.1.2-1
xfce4-clipman-plugin 1.4.3-2
xfce4-cpufreq-plugin 1.2.1-1
xfce4-cpugraph-plugin 1.1.0-1
xfce4-dict 0.8.2-1
xfce4-diskperf-plugin 2.6.1-2
xfce4-fsguard-plugin 1.1.0-2
xfce4-genmon-plugin 4.0.2-1
xfce4-mailwatch-plugin 1.2.0-8
xfce4-mount-plugin 1.1.3-1
xfce4-mpc-plugin 0.5.1-1
xfce4-netload-plugin 1.3.1-2
xfce4-notes-plugin 1.8.1-4
xfce4-notifyd-gtk3 0.4.4-1
xfce4-panel-gtk3 4.14.0-2
xfce4-pulseaudio-plugin 0.4.2-2.1
xfce4-screenshooter 1.9.5-1
xfce4-sensors-plugin 1.3.92-1
xfce4-session-gtk3 4.14.0-2
xfce4-settings-gtk3 4.14.0-1
xfce4-smartbookmark-plugin 0.5.0-2
xfce4-systemload-plugin 1.2.2-1
xfce4-taskmanager 1.2.2-1
xfce4-terminal 0.8.8-2
xfce4-time-out-plugin 1.0.2-3
xfce4-timer-plugin 1.7.0-1
xfce4-verve-plugin 2.0.0-1
xfce4-wavelan-plugin 0.6.0-2
xfce4-weather-plugin 0.8.11-1
xfce4-whiskermenu-plugin-gtk3 2.3.3-1
xfce4-xkb-plugin 0.8.1-2

Upgrading any such with pacman -Q |grep xfce |cut -d ' ' -f 1 | xargs -I _ sudo pacman -S "_"-gtk3 did not succeed so I assume they are all installed.

Remove the file ~/.config/xfce4/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml/displays.xml

Logoff and login

Try using the arandr utility to arange your monitors and apply the config.

Save the configuration as ~/.screenlayout/your-filename.sh

Then from a terminal run the saved configuration script on login

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Removing displays.xml did the trick, thank you!

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