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Can't get a session when using sddm and xfce4 on new installation



I have a new laptop, and I'm trying to get an ansible setup to configure it, testing out that setup on virtualbox. On my current laptop, I use xfce4 and sddm, so I figured I would use the same on the new one. I've had the old laptop for over four years, and I have no idea what I did when installing any of the things on it, so whenever something doesn't work on the new setup, it's a treasure hunt trying to figure out why it works on the old one.

My latest problem has me stumped though, probably because I don't really understand how this stuff is supposed to work.

If I log in on the console, and run startxfce4, it works.

If I log in using sddm, I get kicked out immediately. From what I can gather, it seems to be related to the session, but I can't figure out what is wrong.

I have compared /etc/sddm.conf and /etc/pam.d/* on the old and new, and can't find any relevant differences. I thought for a while the problem was related to consolekit being enabled or not, but I think that is now set up identically on both machines, and I'm also not entirely sure it's supposed to even be involved at all?

This is the only trace of an error I can find in any logs, but it's not all that helpful

 # cat /home/mortenlj/.local/share/sddm/xorg-session.log 

(xfce4-session:3029): Gtk-ERROR **: failed to add UI: The resource at '/org/xfce/libxfce4ui/libxfce4ui-dialog-ui.ui' does not exist
/etc/xdg/xfce4/xinitrc: line 114:  3029 Trace/breakpoint trap   xfce4-session

I have a couple questions:

  1. Should I use consolekit or not, it's not entirely clear? (lots of stuff on the internet says no, but it seems it's because they use systemd, which I don't)
  2. Is there a way to get some more useful error messages from sddm/xfce4-session?
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I finally managed to figure out what was going on.

It turns out that dbus had been installed without support for X, and my setup scripts didn't trigger a proper rebuild after changing the profiles to include 
the `desktop` flavor.

After rebuilding dbus, things started working.

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