Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Debian xscreensaver very old. What's an alternative?

If you're Debian user you must have noticed that every time you login to the system, xscreensaver shows a warning message informing that xscreensaver is very old. But what is an alternative?

Of course, you can go to xscreensaver official website, download latest version and install it instead of the repository's one. But that solution is not ideal, because you'll lose your repository updates and will need to update your xscreensaver manually.

Instead I found another solution, which works great. I don't really need screensaver, but I do need a screen lock. So what I did - simply removed xscreensaver and installed light-locker. Below are the instructions for Debian 8, Jessie:

1. Remove xscreensaver
sudo aptitude purge xscreensaver xscreensaver-data

2. Install light-locker
sudo aptitude install light-locker

3. Re-login, so that light-locker will be started

Now you can lock your screen by using appropriate GUI button in Xfce or Gnome. Or just use this command:
light-locker-command -l

Instead of screensaver you will have just a blank screen and most of the time your display will be off, which is good to save energy.

All these steps you can watch in the video below:

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