5

When I drop to tty1-tty6 through Ctrl-Alt-F[1-6] it shows a prompt, for obvious reasons (it's supposed to).

However, if I kill my display server, and thus X, through something like

sudo service gdm stop

tty7 is just blank. From my understanding X is started with startx, so I'm wondering why tty7 doesn't drop back to a prompt when X terminates.

Note: my knowledge of X and display servers is relatively limited.

6

As far as I know this is all just tradition. "tty" is just a historical hangover from mainframes. 1-6 exist as login prompts because that's how they're defined in /etc/default/console-setup (and executed by /etc/init/console-setup.conf). This is how those TTYs get their login prompts and by extension, why tty7 does not have one.

But why 6 text ttys? And why tty7 for graphics? I have no idea.

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