Bug#255744: xserver-xfree86: X fails to load if psmouse module managed by hotplug
If the system is powered up and X is started by kdm, X will often fail
because of a missing core pointer. Starting X manually immediately after
(e.g. using /etc/init.d/kdm start), always succeeds.
The problem goes away if psmouse is added to /etc/modules.
I have seen this problem myself on two different systems and  has two
more people with the same problem. In all cases the solution above
In my case, I did a fresh Sarge install using Debian Installer on both
systems. By default the mouse driver and related modules (like evdev)
will be managed by hotplug.
This means that psmouse is only loaded after X is started and probes for
the presence of the core pointer. I think the time out allowed by X is
to short for the drivers to load, so X can't find the mouse, the load
fails and the user is returned to the console.
Adding psmouse in /etc/modules ensures that the drivers are loaded much
earlier in the bootprocess, so X is able to locate the mouse without
I think this bug is important because a lot of installs with Sarge's
new installer are likely to be affected by this problem.
The problem has been observed 4 times using kdm, but I would think it
applies to other display managers as well.
I have not included config and log files as the problem is currently
fixed on my system using the solution listed above.
I can however easily reproduce a log file if needed (on request).
-- System Information:
Debian Release: testing/unstable
APT prefers testing
APT policy: (500, 'testing')
Architecture: i386 (i686)
Kernel: Linux 126.96.36.19940613-1
Locale: LANG=C, LC_CTYPE=C
Versions of packages xserver-xfree86 depends on:
ii debconf [debconf-2.0] 1.4.25 Debian configuration management sy
ii libc6 2.3.2.ds1-13 GNU C Library: Shared libraries an
ii xserver-common 4.3.0.dfsg.1-4 files and utilities common to all
ii zlib1g 1:188.8.131.52-3 compression library - runtime
-- debconf information:
* xserver-xfree86/config/device/identifier: Generic Video Card
xserver-xfree86/config/monitor/screen-size: 17 inches (430 mm)
* xserver-xfree86/config/monitor/selection-method: Medium
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/mouse/emulate3buttons: true
* xserver-xfree86/config/device/bus_id: PCI:0:2:0
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/keyboard/layout: us
* xserver-xfree86/config/monitor/identifier: Generic Monitor
* xserver-xfree86/config/monitor/mode-list: 1024x768 @ 75Hz
* xserver-xfree86/config/monitor/lcd: true
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/keyboard/rules: xfree86
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/keyboard/model: pc104
* xserver-xfree86/config/write_dri_section: true
* xserver-xfree86/config/device/driver: i810
* xserver-xfree86/config/display/default_depth: 24
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/mouse/zaxismapping: true
* xserver-xfree86/config/display/modes: 1024x768, 800x600, 640x480
* xserver-xfree86/config/modules: GLcore, bitmap, dbe, ddc, dri, extmod, freetype, glx, int10, record, speedo, type1, vbe
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/mouse/protocol: ImPS/2
* xserver-xfree86/autodetect_video_card: true
* xserver-xfree86/config/inputdevice/mouse/port: /dev/psaux
* xserver-xfree86/config/write_files_section: true