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I'm experimenting with xmonad, which I installed from the Ubuntu Software Centre on Ubuntu 12.10. It looks cool, but when I invoke it (using xmonad --replace from the command line) my title bars disappear and my keyboard stops working. At all. The terminal stops working, the keystrokes I've seen in online "getting started" guides are ignored, and the only way for me to actually power the system off is to hit the reset button or ssh in from my phone.

Ironically, my mouse still works.

One guide I saw suggested replacing the default window environment with xmonad, but I'm afraid of rendering my system completely inoperable if I do that.

Any suggestions?

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

Make a new .desktop file for xmonad. That allows you to pick it at the log-in screen, and if anything goes wrong, you can restart and pick whatever you're normally using. Here's the file I have:

[Desktop Entry]
Encoding=UTF-8
Name=XMonad
Comment=Lightweight tiling window manager
Exec=xmonad
Icon=xmonad.png
Type=XSession

Placed in /usr/share/xsession/xmonad.desktop

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