sway on void linux without elogind

posted aug 14, 2022

these notes don’t cover configuring sway, your terminal, etc. this is a simple barebones breakdown of getting sway running w/ seat management and dbus.

install information:

  • amd gpu
  • sway
  • dbus
  • seatd

install seatd

sudo xbps-install seatd
sudo ln -s /etc/sv/seatd /var/service
sudo sv enable seatd

add user to appropriate groups

sudo usermod -aG _seatd,audio,video rj1

PAM module: pam_rundir

on other operating systems leveraging systemd, the runtime directory is usually created/managed by systemd-logind. since void linux does not use systemd, we’ll need to find another solution. I’d prefer not to use elogind, so the best solution I’ve come across is pam_rundir. we’re already using PAM so why not let it manage our runtime directory as well? makes sense to me!

install pam_rundir module

sudo xbps-install pam_rundir

edit the file /etc/pam.d/system-login, adding:

-session optional pam_rundir.so

now you don’t need to worry about XDG_RUNTIME_DIR not being set!

I’ve recently come across dumb_runtime_dir as well. I think the only difference is that it doesn’t delete the directory on logout, while pam_rundir does.


enable the dbus service

sudo ln -s /etc/sv/dbus /var/service
sudo sv enable dbus

install software

sudo xbps-install mesa-dri sway

launch script

at this point, you should logout and log back in to continue

you should now be able to simply launch sway by doing

dbus-run-session sway

but I like to set a fixed dbus session address. I created a launch script called startw which consists of:

dbus-daemon --session --nofork --nopidfile --address=$DBUS_SESSION_BUS_ADDRESS &
# sway -V > /tmp/sway.log 2>&1

DBUS_SESSION_BUS_ADDRESS is set in my shell login profile already, but you could set it in this launch script if you wanted to.

have fun!