Changing to auto-login runlevel 3

I’ve installed OpenSuSE on a PC w/o a monitor, keyboard or mouse. I want to use it as a file server for my home network. I’m hoping to use NX to administer the box from my Vista laptop. (I’ll be installing NX later tonight.) Right now, the box boots to the “user selection” screen, no user logs in, and the OS can’t be accessed from another PC.

What I want is to change the boot process so that it automatically logs my account on to a text box (command line). Then, if I want to remotely access the box, I can “NX” to the command prompt, run “init 5” (?) and then use gnome to do work. (I’m semi-command line literate, but I prefer to start with the GUI version of yast.

Any guidance on how to do this is appreciated.



ATM I cannot complety see all the implications of what you want (especialy as Vista is involved and I have no knowledge of Redmond systems at all). But I will throw in a few remarks.

About YaST. When you use YaSt from the command line


you will get the so called ncurses interface of YaST wich provides the same possibilities as the GUI, but in the form of what you may call “ASCII art”. In fact you see the same and act the same as with the GUI. Without clicking with the mouse of course, but using TAB, RTRN or Alt-Key combinations. Not something to be afraid of.

Runlevel 5 in fact does not to much more then runlevel 3. It only starts kdm or gdm. So IMHO it does not bring much running only runlevel 3 until 5 is needed.

Or see and edit /etc/inittab manually.

Thanks for the replies. Changing to runlevel 3 seems pretty straightforward. How about changing to auto-logon?



Here seems to be a little misunderstanding. To reach the computer and it’s command line from remote, there is no need to have a user logged in locally, e.g. by auto login.

To reach the command line from remote, best is to use ssh. Using yast to install and configure the sshd (under network services). Then install a ssh client (e.g. putty) on your windows machine. Using putty you reach the command line on your server and can e.g. start NX.

Or, since it is a local network, you just enable remote login in /etc/sysconfig Displaymanager->Displaymanger_remote_access and install an X client (xming) on your windows machine.

From what I know about NX is that you don’t need to be logged in in the server. You only need to have the nxserver service running (can be enabled in yast).
Then use the windows nxclient to connect to your server, and it will automatically start a session (KDE, gnome, or whatever you selected in nxclient).
So there is no need to explicitly ssh to the server for that, nxclient will do it.

NX needs ssh for data transfer. And also maybe the user also only wants to run NX server, when he intends to access the server. So it’s a good thing to have access via ssh to the command line too.

@themikeaustin. IMHO (and reading the others comments) you only need your system at runlevel 3 (as you know you set this in /etc/inittab).

It does not matter how you login from remote and if you start desktop software then. This has no influence on the needed runlevel. You need runlevel 5 only when you want a graphical login on the system itself.

I do not realy understand your ‘automatic login’. When you login from remote, you can automise a few things:

  1. automaticly start the the client software (on system startup of the client?);
  2. let the client software login automaticaly when started (build in userid/password?);
  3. automate the login on your openSUSE as far as posible by providing a fixed userid and/or password;
    Points 2 and 3 are not needed to full extend both of course. They also have security issues, but that is up to you.

Thank you all for your help. For all of Windows faults, it sure does spoil you with its relatively painless installation routines.:slight_smile: I’ve used various flavors of Linux over the past several years and I’ve been working with AIX for the past 18 months as a user (I’m a DBA), but this is my first serious attempt to actually set up a server. It’s been made more challenging because I was hoping that, after the initial install, I would be able to use Putty or Windows remote desktop to administer the box. I haven’t been able to connect with either of these tools, and some other postings here have recommended NX.

Thanks again.