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I'd like to set a different format for the long date string I get at the top of the login screen in Lubuntu (15.04). How do I do that?

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The simplest way to modify LDM settings? Try LightDM GTK+ Greeter Settings GUI...

It should be capable of what you want to do.

LightDM GTK+ Greeter Settings is a small GUI written in Python which lets you modify various LightDM GTK+ Greeter settings, such as the theme, font, background, window position and more, settings which otherwise can only be set by modifying the greeter configuration files.

LightDM GTK+ Greeter Settings gives users access to the following settings:

  • Appearance: change LightDM GTK+ Greeter theme, icons, font (with DPI/antialias/subpixel rendering and hinting settings), change the background image or set it to a color, enable user wallpaper if available or change the default user image;
  • Panel: change the clock format and redefine indicators (enable/disable indicators or reorder them);
  • Window position: change the login dialog window position
  • Misc: enable/disable onscreen keyboard, set the timeout until the screen blanks.

    sudo add-apt-repository ppa:kalgasnik/ppa sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install lightdm-gtk-greeter-settings

Screenshots etc. here: http://www.webupd8.org/2014/10/lightdm-gtk-greeter-settings-gui.html

Or edit /etc/lightdm/lightdm-gtk-greeter.conf

[greeter]
background=/lib/plymouth/themes/xubuntu-logo/wallpaper.png
......
clock-format=%d %b, %H:%M
.....

To your desired format...

EDIT: From Ubuntu Wiki:

/usr/share/lightdm/lightdm.conf.d/*.conf
/etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf.d/*.conf
/etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf

System provided configuration is stored in /usr/share/lightdm/lightdm.conf.d/*.conf and is not user editable. System administrators can override this configuration in /etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf.d/*.conf and /etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf. Files are read in the above order and combined together to make the LightDM configuration.

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