James Butler wrote:
Greetings all,

I'm using 7-stable on my Thinkpad X31, with Xfce recently (2 weeks or
so) installed from packages. I have two minor problems with Xfce, at
least one of which could be HAL/DBUS related - I'd appreciate some
advice to rule out misconfiguration on my part.

Firstly, when I bring up the Xfce Exit dialog, the Restart and
Shutdown buttons are greyed out. I have read the Xfce FAQ on the
subject, which mentions that the session manager tries HAL shutdown
methods first, then falls back to sudo. I don't have sudo installed,
but I have both hald and dbus (system and session) running.

Checking the xsession error log after an attempted Exit reveals:

** Message: xfsm-shutdown-helper.c:215: HAL not available or does not
permit to shutdown/reboot the computer, trying sudo fallback instead.

and (as expected):

** (xfce4-session:1066): WARNING **: sudo was not found. You will not
be able to shutdown your system from within Xfce

Looking at xfsm-shutdown-helper.c I see that the session manager
probes HAL for shutdown support by trying a dummy method call:

/* this is a simple trick to check whether we are allowed to
   * use the org.freedesktop.Hal.Device.SystemPowerManagement
   * interface without shutting down/rebooting now.
  message = dbus_message_new_method_call ("org.freedesktop.Hal",




/* if we receive org.freedesktop.DBus.Error.UnknownMethod, then
   * we are allowed to shutdown/reboot the computer via HAL.
  if (strcmp (error.name, "org.freedesktop.DBus.Error.UnknownMethod") == 0)

So out of curiosity I tried this manually and got the 'correct' error:

$ dbus-send --system --print-reply  --dest=org.freedesktop.Hal
Error org.freedesktop.DBus.Error.UnknownMethod: Method
"ThisMethodMustNotExistInHal" with signature "" on interface
"org.freedesktop.Hal.Device.SystemPowerManagement" doesn't exist

Now I don't claim to understand much of this, so any help would be
greatly appreciated. I have provided the output of various commands
from the freebsd-gnome Bugging guide at

My other problem is possibly unrelated, but any actions I perform
which would remove or update icons on the desktop (deleting a file,
emptying Trash) don't take effect until xfdesktop is restarted or I
log out and then in. Any ideas? Notably, automatic detection and
mounting of USB drives, which seems to be a fragile area for many HAL
users, works perfectly for me.

Thanks in advance,
-James Butler

Insert something like the following in your /usr/local/etc/PolicyKit/PolicyKit.conf (between the <config> tags):

   <match action="org.freedesktop.hal.power-management.shutdown">
      <match user="yourusername">
         <return result="yes"/>
   <match action="org.freedesktop.hal.power-management.reboot">
      <match user="yourusername">
         <return result="yes"/>

Have a look at /usr/local/share/PolicyKit/policy. Examine the contents of the files there to see possible actions.
It may also help to have a look at this page, if you haven't already:


I have some annoyances with XFCE myself, but I haven't bothered seriously to fix them. I have the same no-icon-update problem on my desktop. I keep pressing F5 as a workaround. Like in your case, USB flash drive mounting works perfectly. Another thing that does not work for me, is clicking an http link in an app: it will not open firefox. Weird, as firefox is selected as the default / preferred browser.
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