Customize LightDM with Themes and Backgrounds [Ubuntu]

LightDM could be the login screen the thing is once your Ubuntu machine starts up. It’s superior to the old days once you were dropped at th...


ubuntu-tweak-newlogin-smallLightDM could be the login screen the thing is once your Ubuntu machine starts up. It’s superior to the old days once you were dropped at the terminal prompt. It’s a relatively new program, even though it does an admirable job of getting you login towards the desktop, one could argue the visuals really are a little bland. The following will disclose how to customize LightDM with themes and backgrounds to decorate up that dull look.

Customize LightDM on KDE

If you’re running KDE, it is pretty tailor-made LightDm. Open System Settings, and locate “Login Screen (LightDM)”i n the “System Administration” group.
Customize LightDM in KDE
Opening this will display a screen that lets you:
  • Select from among two included themes: Classic (displaying only fields for account information) and “User Bar” (displaying avatars and usernames in the side-scrollable list using a field for password below).
  • Change the history image for that LightDM screen.
Customize LightDM background
Once you’ve made changes, you’ll need to log from KDE to view them.
As mentioned, you can find only two themes installed automagically (no less than on my Kubuntu system). If you manage to discover others across the Internet (they don’t appear in likely places like KDE-Look yet), you’ll need to copy them into folders beneath /usr/share/kde4/apps/lightdm-kde-greeter/themes/ (by using an Kbuntu-based system). For other systems, seek out where the “LightDM KDE Greeter” keeps its files.

Customize LightDM on Unity

For systems using Unity, there’s no utility available out-of-the-box to customize LightDM, however the handy Ubuntu Tweak will help you do this. In Ubuntu Tweak, find the “Login Settings” button (as shown below).
Customize LightDM using Ubuntu Tweak
Make sure the “Tweaks” tab is highlighted, and you should see a screen just like the one below. First, you’ll have to click the “Unlock” button and input your password, since these are system-level changes.
Unlock Ubuntu Tweak
Customize LightDM login
Ubuntu Tweak will allow you to do many things, including:
  • Set whether guest access should be enabled.
  • Change the history image
  • Change the logo
  • Select the GTK theme to be used
  • Select the icon theme to become used
Once you are making your selections, you’ll must log out of Unity and log back in to see the changes.
ubuntu-tweak-newlogin

Alternative LightDM Greeters

If the conventional LightDM greeters (unity-greeter and lightdm-kde-greeter) aren’t want, you can install alternatives. One choices to install the “other” default greeter, i.e. install the unity-greeter package on your Kubuntu machine, or even the lightdm-kde-greeter package in your Ubuntu system. One thing to take into account is that these will install a fair quantity of new Unity or KDE dependencies in your case, therefore space or performance is very important to you, these bankruptcies are not the lightest options. The following commands will install these greeters to suit your needs:
sudo apt-get install lightdm-kde-greeter
sudo apt-get install unity-greeter
The lightdm-gtk-greeter package provides a log-in screen built with all the GTK toolkit, and employed in the Lubuntu variant. This greeter is basically a single dialog with alternatives for user account, password, and session type. One feature you’ll lose with this option is the ability to join to a remote machine along with your local computer, but when you don’t use this feature, it’s an extremely straightforward log-in screen.
lightdm-gtk-greeter
The following command will install this choice:
sudo apt-get install lightdm-gtk-greeter
A more sophisticated option will be the lightdm-webkit-greeter package. This option gives you the ability to create your personal theme in HTML, CSS, and Javascript. If you know some web design, it is possible to use this as a basis for your own personal theme. Copy the files situated in /usr/share/lightdm-webkit/themes/webkit, and create a new folder there (including /usr/share/lightdm-webkit/themes/mytheme), and hack away to your heart’s content. You can also find some themes round the Internet. You can install the WebKit greeter with the following command:
sudo apt-get install lightdm-webkit-greeter

Conclusion

LightDM remains in its early stages when it comes to customization, nonetheless it represents a pleasant step forward from existing display managers (including KDM or GDM) as being a cross-desktop utility to get you logged to your Linux desktop. Have you tried any of these ways to customize LightDM? Let us know inside comments below.
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