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Thread: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

  1. #1
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    help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    I think the new Lubuntu SDDM theme that comes with Lubuntu 20.04 is really bad. In fact, almost all the SDDM themes are bad. So, I wanted to make my own SDDM theme, but it is proving more challenging than I thought.

    At first, I thought I would simply copy, modify, and replace the Lubuntu theme's Main.qml file, but I can't.

    I have been able to make some modifications. The following is a screen capture after running
    Code:
    sddm-greeter --test-mode --theme /home/myaccount/Documents/mysddmthemes/mythemename
    https://ubuntuforums.org/attachment....9&d=1588650953

    As you can see, I've got three accounts on my computer, and I've been able to remove a lot of things like the username and user icon. However, what I did to achieve this is very ugly code, and I think it is also likely to prove non-functional if actually installed. Also, I would like to add functionality like changing focus to different user account login boxes by scrolling through them with the Tab key rather than just hovering with mouse. But to fix all that, I need to do more than just modify the Main.qml file. And that is where I am having problems because I can't figure out things like Where is "SDDMComponents2.0" being imported from? and Where is PictureBox.qml located? (I used "locate" from command line, but can't find) and How can I make sure my code is not jeopardizing the security of SDDM log in?

    I tried going to the QML sub-forum on the Qt website, but I think they are mostly operating at a level to far above me to be interested in my questions.

    What is a good place to turn for more in-depth help with QML for a beginner?
    Last edited by wildmanne39; May 5th, 2020 at 05:33 AM. Reason: Removed large image

  2. #2
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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Please use the attachment facility by clicking on the paperclip or use url's for images because apart from bandwidth issues for some, it makes it difficult for those using mobile devices to browse the forum.

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    It's an exceptionally bad idea to modify the QML files. SDDM has lots of (text) configuration possibilities. What exactly do you want to change? SDDM normally only takes care of the startup/login screen.

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Quote Originally Posted by ml9104 View Post
    SDDM has lots of (text) configuration possibilities.
    Really? Can you explain more, because it doesn't seem very configurable to me. According to the Lubuntu manual, you can change the auto-log-in feature, the background, or choose one of the themes from Muon, but all those themes look the same.

    I might use something else, like Simplicity theme or Aerial theme, but I don't know enough to know whether those will be compatible with Lubuntu or whether they are safe. I feel it is safer to do my own by modifying Lubuntu theme.

    Quote Originally Posted by ml9104 View Post
    What exactly do you want to change? SDDM normally only takes care of the startup/login screen.
    Yes, I want to change the startup/login screen. I hate the one that comes with 20.04, and the other themes in Muon basically look the same. As I mentioned above, I have succeeded in removing the icon and rectangular white box from the startup/login screen, as shown in the following screen capture:
    https://ubuntuforums.org/attachment....9&d=1588650953

    However, I don't know if that will be functional, and I would like to go farther in modification. I guess my next step, this morning, is replacing "PictureBox" object with the code in PictureBox.qml from Github, but I'm not sure if that file in Github is the thing on my computer because I can't find the SDDMcomponents2.0 that the Lubuntu theme's Main.qml is importing...

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Quote Originally Posted by anotherChris View Post
    Yes, I want to change the startup/login screen. I hate the one that comes with 20.04, and the other themes in Muon basically look the same.
    It's not like there's a shortage. Even if you don't find the ultimate SDDM theme there you can see what other people have done, and how, to guide your tinkering.
    None but ourselves can free our minds

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Quote Originally Posted by CatKiller View Post
    It's not like there's a shortage. Even if you don't find the ultimate SDDM theme there you can see what other people have done, and how, to guide your tinkering.
    Okay, but KDE is for Plasma, and I'm using LXQt. I assume that those KDE store themes won't work in Lubuntu, right?

    I have looked at what other people have posted on GitHub for SDDM themes. Using the Main.qml from "Lubuntu SDDM theme" as a template, I have modified it and been successful as described in previous posts upthread. But I don't know what resources to turn to for advice.

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Okay, but KDE is for Plasma, and I'm using LXQt. I assume that those KDE store themes won't work in Lubuntu, right?
    No.
    sddm, as with most (if not all) display managers, is rather desktop session agnostic.
    The login screen runs before the desktop loads.
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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Really? Can you explain more, because it doesn't seem very configurable to me. According to the Lubuntu manual, you can change the auto-log-in feature, the background, or choose one of the themes from Muon, but all those themes look the same.
    Sure. Let's take the background first. This is defined in /usr/share/sddm/themes/wall.png ... except it's not! wall.png just contains a symbolic link. The real background picture is stored in /usr/share/lubuntu/wallpapers/lubuntu-default-wallpaper.png ... except it's not! This .png file is also a symbolic link that per default points to 2004-lubuntu-wire-humming.png in the same directory. You'll need to copy your favorite wallpaper graphic into this directory and change the lubuntu-default-wallpaper.png symbolic link to point to your graphic. This means deleting the symbolic link and creating a new one with the same name. Be careful with ownership and permissions, use the same as the previous files.
    Fixed.

    For the rest of the SDDM screen, starting top left:
    The drop-down menu for choosing environment is modified by editing:
    /usr/share/xsessions/LXQt Desktop and /usr/share/xsessions/Openbox to contain the line NoDisplay=true
    The drop-down menu for keyboard: I've no solution at this point (it's a known bug in SDDM)
    The icons for Suspend, Reboot and Shutdown can be changed in /usr/share/sddm/themes/lubuntu by substituting equivalent .png files.
    The login avatars can also be changed. For the Main User (as defined during installation) the avatar is a 256x256 .png stored in /usr/share/sddm/faces and has the name .face.icon
    For all other users it's stored in $HOME, also with file name .face.icon

    Hope this helps. Again, changing the .qml files is NOT a good idea, the side effects can be devastating.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by ml9104; May 6th, 2020 at 08:30 PM.

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Quote Originally Posted by deadflowr View Post
    No.
    sddm, as with most (if not all) display managers, is rather desktop session agnostic.
    The login screen runs before the desktop loads.
    That makes sense, but then why does the Muon Package Manager (which is how the Lubuntu manual recommends getting new themes) show only a handful of alternate themes? (I guess I should really ask that question at the Lubuntu.me forum!)

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    Re: help going more in depth to SDDM theme : where to turn?

    Quote Originally Posted by ml9104 View Post
    Sure. Let's take the background first. This is defined in /usr/share/sddm/themes/wall.png ... except it's not! wall.png just contains a symbolic link. The real background picture is stored in /usr/share/lubuntu/wallpapers/lubuntu-default-wallpaper.png ... except it's not! This .png file is also a symbolic link that per default points to 2004-lubuntu-wire-humming.png in the same directory. You'll need to copy your favorite wallpaper graphic into this directory and change the lubuntu-default-wallpaper.png symbolic link to point to your graphic. This means deleting the symbolic link and creating a new one with the same name. Be careful with ownership and permissions, use the same as the previous files.
    I understand this method, but this is not how the Lubuntu manual suggests changing the background. It suggests modifying the theme.conf file.

    Quote Originally Posted by ml9104 View Post
    For the rest of the SDDM screen, starting top left:
    The drop-down menu for choosing environment is modified by editing:
    /usr/share/xsessions/LXQt Desktop and /usr/share/xsessions/Openbox to contain the line NoDisplay=true
    The drop-down menu for keyboard: I've no solution at this point (it's a known bug in SDDM)
    The icons for Suspend, Reboot and Shutdown can be changed in /usr/share/sddm/themes/lubuntu by substituting equivalent .png files.
    The login avatars can also be changed. For the Main User (as defined during installation) the avatar is a 256x256 .png stored in /usr/share/sddm/faces and has the name .face.icon
    For all other users it's stored in $HOME, also with file name .face.icon
    I didn't know about xsessions, but if you look at the image I posted to Ubuntu forums of screen capture of my in-progress SDDM theme (linked above), you can see I already removed all these things. Not very difficult.

    Quote Originally Posted by ml9104 View Post
    Hope this helps. Again, changing the .qml files is NOT a good idea, the side effects can be devastating.
    But installing new SDDM themes from Muon or from the KDE store (see comment above from deadflower) is the same as changing the .qml files. If Main.qml contains the elements necessary for logging in, there should be no problem. That's why I asked the original question--because I want someone to look at the code before I try it.

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