Managing DECwindows Motif for OpenVMS Systems
This is a new manual.
DECwindows Motif Version 1.2 for OpenVMS AXP
DECwindows Motif Version 1.2 for OpenVMS VAX
Operating System Version:
OpenVMS AXP Version 1.5
VMS Version 5.5--2
Digital Equipment Corporation Maynard, Massachusetts
Compaq Computer Corporation makes no representations that the use of
its products in the manner described in this publication will not
infringe on existing or future patent rights, nor do the descriptions
contained in this publication imply the granting of licenses to make,
use, or sell equipment or software in accordance with the description.
Possession, use, or copying of the software described in this
publication is authorized only pursuant to a valid written license from
Compaq or an authorized sublicensor.
© Compaq Computer Corporation 1994. All Rights Reserved.
The postpaid Readers Comments forms at the end of this document request
your critical evaluation to assist in preparing future documentation.
The following are trademarks of Digital Equipment Corporation: Alpha
AXP, AXP, Bookreader, DECnet, DECwindows, Digital, OpenVMS, ReGIS,
ULTRIX, VAX, VAX DOCUMENT, VAXcluster, VMS, VMScluster, VT100, VT320,
and the DIGITAL logo.
The following are third-party trademarks:
Display POSTSCRIPT and POSTSCRIPT are registered trademarks of Adobe
Motif is a trademark of the Open Software Foundation, Inc.
TEKTRONIX is a registered trademark of Tektronix, Inc.
Open Software Foundation is a trademark of the Open Software
UNIX is a registered trademark licensed exclusively by X/Open Co. Ltd.
X Window System is a trademark of the Massachusetts Institute of
All other trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of
their respective holders.
This document is available on CD-ROM.
This document was prepared using VAX DOCUMENT, Version V3.2n.
The intended audience for this manual is experienced OpenVMS AXP and
VAX system managers who need to manage and customize DECwindows Motif
for VMScluster or standalone systems.
This manual consists of the following chapters and appendixes:
- Chapter 1---An overview of the DECwindows Motif architecture and
a description of DECwindows components.
- Chapter 2---A description of the startup process and how to
customize the startup command procedure.
- Chapter 3---How to configure and customize the display server,
including the use of symbols for server process, device setup, font
setup, backing store, extensions, and error reporting. This chapter
also includes customization examples for dual-head setup, for
specifying new fonts, and alternative methods of transport.
- Chapter 4---A description of the DECwindows Motif login sequence
and how to customize the Session Manager environment, including
creating your own logo, creating dedicated accounts, and customizing
- Appendix A---Recommended settings for UAF limits and system
parameters for both OpenVMS AXP and OpenVMS VAX systems.
- Appendix B---Lists the DECwindows Motif keymap names. This
appendix is arranged by the language for which each keyboard is
- Appendix C---General troubleshooting techniques and a listing of
common problems and suggested solutions.
In this manual, every use of OpenVMS AXP means the OpenVMS AXP
operating system, every use of OpenVMS VAX means the OpenVMS VAX
operating system, and every use of OpenVMS means both the OpenVMS AXP
operating system and the OpenVMS VAX operating system.
In this manual, every use of DECwindows and DECwindows Motif refers to
DECwindows Motif for OpenVMS software.
The following conventions are also used in this manual:
A sequence such as Ctrl/
x indicates that you must hold down the key labeled Ctrl while
you press another key or a pointing device button.
A sequence such as PF1
x indicates that you must first press and release the key
labeled PF1, then press and release another key or a pointing device
A vertical ellipsis indicates the omission of items from a code example
or command format; the items are omitted because they are not important
to the topic being discussed.
Boldface text represents the introduction of a new term or the name of
an argument, an attribute, or a reason.
Boldface text is also used to show user input in online versions of
Italic text emphasizes important information, indicates variables, and
indicates complete titles of manuals. Italic text also represents
information that can vary in system messages (for example, Internal
number), command lines (for example, /PRODUCER=
name), and command parameters in text.
Uppercase text indicates a command, the name of a routine, the name of
a file, or the abbreviation for a system privilege.
A hyphen in code examples indicates that additional arguments to the
request are provided on the line that follows.
All numbers in text are assumed to be decimal, unless otherwise noted.
Nondecimal radixes---binary, octal, or hexadecimal---are explicitly
mouse refers to any pointing device, such as a mouse, a puck,
or a stylus.
MB1, MB2, MB3
MB1 indicates the left mouse button, MB2 indicates the middle mouse
button, and MB3 indicates the right mouse button. (The buttons can be
redefined by the user.)
In this document, discussions that refer to VMScluster environments
apply to both VAXcluster systems that include only OpenVMS VAX nodes
and VMScluster systems that include at least one OpenVMS AXP node
unless indicated otherwise.
System Overview of DECwindows Motif
This chapter provides an overview of the DECwindows Motif for OpenVMS
VAX and AXP systems and includes the following topics:
1.1 Client/Server Model
DECwindows Motif for OpenVMS software operates on a client/server
model. A server is a single-shared process that performs operations at
the request of many client processes. In the DECwindows Motif
environment, the graphics applications (such as DECterm and DECwindows
Mail) are the clients that interact with the display server. The
display server manages the physical graphics display and input devices
on behalf of the client applications.
In most client/server relationships, you think of the client system as
a computer that sits on the desktop and the server system as being in
the machine room. In DECwindows, as in all X window environments, the
server sits on the desktop and displays graphics on the screen, while
the client might be in the machine room running applications like
DECterm and DECwindows Mail. To differentiate between the DECwindows
server and other types of servers, the DECwindows server is referred to
as the display server.
Figure 1-1 illustrates the DECwindows Motif client/display server
Figure 1-1 DECwindows Motif Architecture
1.1.1 The Display Server
The display server is the component of the
architecture that allows application interfaces to interact with all
the supported systems in the same way. Residing on the displaying
system, the display server receives X protocol requests from clients
through transport layers and performs the functions required to fulfill
the request for a specific device.
Essentially, the server converts data that represents the request into
commands that can be executed by the appropriate graphics device.
When the user of an application enters data with the mouse or keyboard,
the display server receives input from the device drivers and passes
protocol packets back through the transport layers to Xlib and toolkit
The display server supports asynchronous input from the user to the
application and asynchronous output from the application to a display.
1.1.2 The Client
The client is a process that makes the X protocol
request and is usually a user's application, such as DECterm or
DECwindows Mail. The client controls what is displayed on the server
display system and generates the user interface with which the user
1.1.3 The Transport Layer
In the DECwindows architecture, as in most client/server models, the
client and server do not have to reside on the same machine. The client
and server are connected by a transport layer that hides the details of
the connection. The client and server must each contain their own
The transport layer is responsible for transferring
data between the client and server systems and does not alter this data
in any way.
DECwindows Motif for OpenVMS supports the following transport
- Local transport (shared memory)
1.2 DECwindows Motif Components
This section lists the components that makeup the DECwindows Motif
layered product and the components that are bundled with the operating
1.2.1 DECwindows Motif Layered Product Components
The following components make up the DECwindows Motif layered product:
- CDA Viewer
- Session management utilities
- Motif toolkit
- Intrinsics toolkit
- Extensions library
1.2.2 Operating System Bundled Components
The following DECwindows components are bundled with the operating
- X server---Consists of a collection of the following shareable
- Main entry-point stub
- Device-independent server image
- Device-dependent server image
- Dynamically loadable extensions
The main image and device-independent server image are directly
linked together. During initialization, depending on which graphics
devices are available and have been selected, the device-dependent
server images are dynamically activated. The loadable extensions are
dynamically activated either during initialization for OpenVMS AXP or
when they are first used.
- Transport---Consists of a single common image and a collection of
The common transport image is built into the display server. Based
on transport initialization parameters, one or more of the
transport-specific images is dynamically activated.
- Device drivers---The DECwindows display server uses two types of
drivers: input drivers and graphics/video drivers.
- Data files---The display server references the following data files:
- Font files
- Keymap files that define how keyboard keys are interpreted
- Color database that defines how color names and RGB values are
Starting DECwindows Motif
This chapter describes the DECwindows startup process, which begins
when the first DECwindows startup command file executes and continues
until the DECwindows Start Session dialog box appears. This chapter
contains the following sections:
2.1 System Startup Considerations
Before starting DECwindows, you may want to make changes or add
logicals to the system startup file, SYSTARTUP_VMS.COM, which is
located in the SYS$MANAGER directory. (On systems running VMS Version
5.5--2, the startup file is SYSTARTUP_V5.COM.)
Table 2-1 lists each logical name and its meaning.
Table 2-1 System Logicals
Do not start up DECwindows.
Do not perform workstation-specific startup.
Do not spawn as a subprocess.
Do not verify SYSGEN parameters.
Do not wait for DECnet to start.
Use a graphics device on a multihead system.
DECwindows Motif requires that certain system parameters be set to
specific or minimum values (For information about these values, see
Appendix A). During DECwindows startup, the system checks whether
these parameter values are set appropriately. If the values are not set
properly, the system prompts you to run AUTOGEN to modify the values.
Parameter values set in SYS$SYSTEM:MODPARAMS.DAT override all other
settings. Setting values in this file may prevent DECwindows Motif from
2.2 Understanding the Startup Procedure
This section describes the DECwindows Motif startup
process. Figure 2-1 illustrates the startup sequence.
Figure 2-1 DECwindows Startup Command Procedure Flow
2.2.1 Using the DECW$STARTUP.COM Procedure
The DECW$STARTUP.COM procedure is the only DECwindows command procedure
with which a system manager invokes directly. This command procedure is
used in the following ways:
- Called to startup DECwindows Motif during system startup.
- May be called by a privileged user to restart the display server if
- May be called by a privileged user to start the DECwindows server,
libraries, or applications. "Starting" the libraries, for
example, consists of defining logicals and installing images.
The DECW$STARTUP.COM command procedure takes one parameter.
Table 2-2 lists the possible parameter values and the procedure they
2.2.2 The Startup Process
This section describes the events that occur when the DECwindows Motif
startup procedure is invoked until the DECwindows Start Session dialog
box appears. The startup process is as follows:
- DECW$LOGICALS.COM is invoked to create the
DECwindows application startup and configuration parameters are defined
in this step.
- DECW$DEVICE.COM is invoked to load or configure the
This procedure also defines the symbols used in subsequent phases of
the DECwindows startup sequence. Most importantly, DECW$DEVICE.COM sets
the symbol DECW$DEVICE, which contains a list of the graphics devices
that the display server attempts to use.
- DECW$CHECK_PARAMS.COM is invoked. This procedure
verifies that all system parameters required during DECwindows startup
are set appropriately.
If one or more parameters are not set
correctly, DECW$CHECK_PARAMS.COM displays a list of parameters that
need to be modified. The DECW$STARTUP.COM procedure asks whether the
user wants to run AUTOGEN. If you invoked DECW$STARTUP.COM with the
RESTART parameter, the question displays on the system console.
you answer no to this question, DECW$STARTUP.COM displays a message
stating that DECwindows cannot start until the system parameters are
modified, and exits. If the user answers Yes, DECW$STARTUP.COM runs
AUTOGEN from the GETDATA phase to REBOOT. This modifies system
parameters and then reboots system.
To bypass the system parameter
check, define the logical name DECW$IGNORE_AUTOGEN before running
DECW$STARTUP.COM (see Table 2-1).
- DECW$STARTXTERMINAL.COM is invoked, if it exists.
If the logical DECW$INSTALL_XTERMINAL has been defined in the system
startup procedure, the following functions are performed:
- Provides client support using the LAT transport
- Adds XTDRIVER as class driver for Xlib to communicate to the LT
- Installs DECW$TRANSPORT_LAT.EXE
- Provides font-file sharing through the DECW$FD process
- Runs the font daemon process as a detached process
- Installs DECnet access gateway server image with SYSNAM privileges
- DECW$STARTSERVER.COM is invoked to perform the
- Handle the RESTART option to the DECW$STARTUP
procedure. If RESTART is selected, a command file named
DECW$KILLSERVERn.COM is created and executed as a detached
process with the process name "Server n Restart".
This procedure stops the current server process and executes
DECW$STARTUP.COM with P1 set to null.
- Create the server-specific logical name table
- Invoke the server customization file DECW$PRIVATE_SERVER_SETUP.COM.
Section 3.1 for information about how to customize the display server.
- Populate the server-specific logical name table based on symbols
defined in DECW$DEVICE.COM and DECW$PRIVATE_SERVER_SETUP.COM.
- Purge previous versions of the server error log file
- Check for the logical DECW$SERVER_DUMP that indicates whether the
server saves a process dump file when a server crash occurs. Setting
this logical disables the server's condition handler.
- Check for user-specified server process parameters. See
Section 3.2.1 for a list of server process parameters that you can
- Determine the server executable name. Normally this is
SYS$SYSTEM:DECW$SERVER_MAIN.EXE. An alternative server image executes
- The logical DECW$SERVER_MAIN is defined to point to an alternative
server executable file.
- A file exists with the name
SYS$SYSTEM:DECW$SERVER_MAIN_xx.EXE, where xx are the
first two letters of the primary graphics device defined by the symbol
Note that an alternate server image is executed only for bug fixes
and special hardware releases.
- Run the display server image as a detached process using the device
name and process parameter information collected.
- DECW$STARTLIBS.COM is invoked to perform the
- Defines DECwindows logicals
- Installs the Xlib, toolkit, and CDA shared libraries
- Connects the WSDRIVER for the DCL command SET DISPLAY
DECW$STARTAPPS.COM is invoked to set up the user application developer environment. This
procedure also creates a WSAn: device in executive mode and
creates a Start Session dialog box. If you have created the
customization command file DECW$PRIVATE_APPS_SETUP.COM, it is invoked
Use this file to customize the login sequence. See Section 4.3 for
information about how to customize application startup.