Java Desktop for X Window

Copyright © 2001-2004 The JD4X Project
Refer to the GNU General Public License for more details.

How To Install JD4X.
The JD4X installation is very flexible. Depending on the needs of its end users, it can be installed system wide so that all users on the Linux system can use it or it can be installed just for a single account. The main problem that users will face with the installation process is the non-standardization of different Linux distributions. Unfortunately, due to this reason, you will need to have some administration knowledge and skills to be able to install JD4X properly. In this document, we describe the main stream standard used by RedHat, Mandrake and other popular commercial Linux distributions. If you use one of these Linux distributions, the installation should be fairly straight forward. However, if you do not have a Linux distribution that follow these standards, you may need to either contact us or pose your installation problems in the Help forum at the JD4X website. The installation process assumes that you have some basic amount of Linux/Unix knowledge, so if you don't then perhaps it is good to pickup a simple book on the topic first.

Linux Distributions That Are Known To Be Incompatible With Our Installation Process:
Until we have our own Linux distribution, this will be a pain you will have to bear alone.

Recommended Installation Option
We recommend that you do the system wide installation because that way you only need to maintain a single copy and not have to install the base code over and over again.

Installing The Java Desktop, System Wide And For A Single Account.
The only difference between installing JD4X system wide and for a single account is the location of the JD4X base code. If you are installing JD4X system wide, then you will need to be root. Ensure that you have the J2SDK already properly installed on your system. To be on the safe side, create a new user account to test out the JD4X installation first so that you will not destory your favorite desktop if something does go wrong with the uninstallation. If you are installing JD4X using your existing user account that already runs a different window manager than JD4X, make sure that you remember to reset the acount to run the default session scripts. This can be done usually by just reselecting the session menu option in your login panel to the appropriate option. Refer to your Linux distribution for the appropriate option to use because every distribution uses different custom options.
Here are the installation steps:
  1. Use an Xterm, if you are attempting to install JD4X into a system wide location (eg. /usr), you will need to become root. Assuming that you are on your own computer and that you can become root. You must ensure that you have permission to install JD4X into the desired directory that you are intending to make the installation, or else the installation will fail.
    1. Command: su
  2. Change into the directory where the entire downloaded jar file is located. The example shown here assumes that you have downloaded the jar file into your home directory. If you have downloaded the package into another location, then ensure that ~/ is replaced by the correct directory path.
    1. Command: cd ~/
  3. Unpack the JD4X package.
    1. Command: java -jar install.jar -z
  4. A dialog will appear asking you to enter your desired installation directory. Specify the location you desire to install JD4X.
  5. If you had successfully installed the package, then the jd4x directory is in the desired location, you can exit your root account (if you were root) and start the user account installation. If you failed to install the package, you should proceed to save a copy of the screen dump (error messages) and sent it to us.
  6. When installing JD4X into a new account, always invoke the install.jar file in the directory where the jd4x directory is located. Do not move or remove any of the original files to another location after installing. The example below assumed that you have installed the package into the /usr directory. If you have installed the package else where, then you should replace /usr/jd4x with "whatever directory"/jd4x.
    1. Command: exit
    2. Command: cd  /usr/jd4x
    3. Command: java -jar install.jar -i
  7. The GUI Installer should be started. It will first check for the required system dependencies before allowing you to carry on the installation.
  8. If you get a Configuration warning, it means that you have an older configuration file in your current account. If you want the new default menu and launcher configuration with all the added third party software, you need to say yes to removing the old configuration file. If you choose not to remove your old configuration, and you have installed JD4X to a new location different from the previous version, then it may be possible to experience some errors such as wrong directory paths to applications, missing skin files and etc. You will need to manually reconfigure those old settings when necessary.
  9. If you get an Operating System (OS) error, then JD4X has not been ported to your OS, you cannot install JD4X. Consider if you can help port JD4X to your OS, drop us a mail and let us know if you think you can do that.
  10. If you get a Vendor error, then you have not installed the J2SDK from SUN, so you'll need to install that first before trying again.
  11. (The most common error!) If you get an X Window System error, either your Linux distribution does not use the standard system scripts (.Xclients or .xsession) or you are currently using your default desktop system for your particular Linux distribution indicated by your session menu selection in the login panel. You will need to complete the entire default installation process in order to know which one is the actual problem.
  12. Read and follow the installation process. If you don't know what parameters to alter and you had previously recieved an X Window System error, don't worry, kept all the default parameters and complete the entire installation.
  13. Log out after completing the installation and try to login to your account again. If you see the JD4X splash screen appear, then you have successfully installed JD4X, go to step 15. If your old desktop system got initialized instead of JD4X, then go to step 14.
  14. Now we know for sure that your Linux distribution does not use the standard system scripts or that the window manager initialization process is incompatible. You will need to read the documentation provided by your Linux distribution and learn how you can switch to a new window manager on your system. Once you have learned how to switch to a new window manager, you need to do some observation in order to hack your system to run JD4X.
    1. Observe the original set of files on your user home (or user account) directory before attempting to switch to another new window manager. Copy down the names of all the hidden system files in your home directory. Hidden system files are those with a dot or "." infront of the file names.
    2. Now proceed to change your current window manager (or desktop system) to a new one by following the instructions given in your Linux distribution.
    3. Observe again after installing the new window manager what new hidden system files got created that was never there with the original set of files. Use the same set of commands in step (a) to see the files. There should only be one or two files at most. Copy the names of those files down (ignore directories).
    4. Repeat the entire JD4X installation process from step (6).
    5. When you get to the final parameter dialog, replace the X Window System script option with one of the file names you copied in step (c). Do not remove the path name, just replace the last file name.
    6. Repeat step (13). If you still failed to initialize JD4X, use the remainding file names that you copied in step (c) and repeat step (12) repeatedly each time with a new file name for step (e).
    7. If you successfully got JD4X to initialize, Please help others by emailing us the name of the script file and the Linux distribution that you have so that others who uses the same Linux distribution can run JD4X too.
  15. The next thing to do is to read the user manual. It has all the references to help you kick start your exploration of JD4X as well as all the information you need to know in order to use JD4X productively.
  16. If you failed to launch the JD4X desktop but you manage to see the splash screen appear, then you should try exiting your session using the 3 button <Ctrl><Alt><Backspace> combination. Try to login a second time to confirm that you really have a problem. Sometimes the initial (first) crash is due to the Java toolkit and has nothing to do with the JD4X system.
If you are installing JD4X into a single account, you don't need root privileges and all the installation process is the same as above except that you don't locate JD4X in a global location (eg. /usr) but in your user home directory instead. You can skip step (1) and start from step (2). You should also ignore all instructions referring to root.

A final reminder is that you need to repeat step (6) and onwards for every other extra account that you want to run JD4X with assuming that you had installed JD4X system wide. If you did not install JD4X system wide, then you need to repeat the entire installation process for every single account you want to run JD4X with.

How To Uninstall JD4X And Revert To Your Old Window Manager.
To remove JD4X, just remove the .Xclients script or the script that you discovered in step (14) when the installation failed. If you failed trying to login to your old window manager, then go back to your Linux distribution documentation to find out how you can re-install your default window manager.
  1. Command: rm ~/.Xclients ~/.xsession
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