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Thursday, October 11, 2012

emacs comes up with all characters boxes

This blog item not really a publication, just to record a stupid thing. This blog is the easiest place I know to record little workarounds, etc.  It's indexed.  Plus, no harm in others seeing.  And occasionally they tell me better ways to do things.

Recently have been plagued by emacs come up in VNC with all characters looking like boxes.

This requires xfs, the X Font Server, to be reset.

Error Messages in the VNC Logfiles

Last time I went looking for log messages:

_XSERVTransmkdir: Owner of /tmp/.X11-unix should be set to root

Xvnc Free Edition 4.1.2
Copyright (C) 2002-2005 RealVNC Ltd.
See http://www.realvnc.com for information on VNC.
Underlying X server release 70101000, The X.Org Foundation

Tue Jan  3 10:29:51 2012
vncext:      VNC extension running!
vncext:      Listening for VNC connections on port 5904
vncext:      Listening for HTTP connections on port 5804
vncext:      created VNC server for screen 0
Could not init font path element unix/:7100, removing from list!
Warning: Cannot convert string "nil2" to type FontStruct

Tue Jan  3 10:30:13 2012
Connections: accepted:
SConnection: Client needs protocol version 3.8
SConnection: Client requests security type VncAuth(2)

Tue Jan  3 10:30:19 2012
VNCSConnST:  Server default pixel format depth 16 (16bpp) little-endian rgb565
VNCSConnST:  Client pixel format depth 8 (8bpp) rgb max 3,3,3 shift 4,2,0

Tue Jan  3 10:30:20 2012
VNCSConnST:  Client pixel format depth 16 (16bpp) little-endian rgb565

Related errors: missing lucida, courier, etc. fonts.

How to reset XFS

From IT (months ago)

for future reference, if it happens again, check your vnc log (should be something like ~/.vnc/mipscs587:1.log) for an error like:

Could not init font path element unix/:7100, removing from list!

if you see this, you need to run, as root:

/etc/init.d/xfs restart

then restart your vncserver session

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