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I have created a restricted user which logs in automatically and Chromium runs the default home page with the screen starting maximized but I want it to run in fullscreen (F11) mode. I tried kiosk mode but I don't want to be that restricted and it doesn't seem to behave properly at all (keyboard is almost broken).

I would consider digital signage software but don't really want anything client/server. I just want the machine to boot straight into fullscreen mode. Does this work for firefox?

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Please clarify if you want to have full desktop environment (e.g. ability to switch to other applications) or just a browser running? The answer might differ. – oerdnj Mar 28 '13 at 15:21
I don't really care but for the sake of argument, let's say I want the ability to switch to other applications. That was what I meant by (not kiosk). – Kevin Apr 1 '13 at 14:44
up vote 8 down vote accepted

What about using xdtool

xdotool key F11

this will work for any kind of standard focused window. Include it into start-up script.

don't have xdotool?

sudo apt-get install xdotool

in combination with --start-maximized (which does not do F11, just maximized window) on command line can fulfil your needs

shell script should make the job

chromium-browser --start-maximized
sleep 5
xdotool key F11

Firefox differs only in -fullscreen command line option. The option for F11 mode is missing as well. But consider to use Firefox and Rkiosk extension or the Fullscreen extension

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For people finding this now, you can start Chromium fullscreen from the command line by executing:

chromium-browser --app= --start-fullscreen

Tested on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

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better than the default answer – ligi Jan 29 at 17:49
better than my answer from 2013, which was the only solution because the -start-fullscreen was not present in chromium browser as I remember. – Dee Feb 25 at 8:55

Based on this and other sources, you could try the following, with good chances of success :-)

cp /usr/share/applications/chromium-browser.desktop ~/.local/share/applications/chromium-browser.desktop
nano ~/.local/share/applications/chromium-browser.desktop 

(you may alternatively want to use gksu and the editor of your choosing)

Now, simply add -start-maximized to the line saying exec in chromium-browser.desktop, save and you're done.

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