SUMMARY: Help! Cannot run FVWM on a Sun Ultra1 or Ultra 2

From: Mike Carroll (
Date: Mon May 19 1997 - 16:24:30 CDT

Here is the original problem:

We are using the fvwm (Motif 1.2.4) on Sun Sparc 10's running Solaris 2.5.1.
These systems are operating just fine.

I just purchased and installed
Sun Ultra 1 Creator and Sun Ultra 2 Creator 3D systems running Solaris
2.5.1. When I try to bring up the motif based X window manager (fvwm)
on these systems, the following error is generated and the X window manager
fails to open:

SunOpenFrameBuffer : Inappropriate ioctl for device

I am at a loss as to what I am doing wrong or what is missing.

The compiler used to generate fvwm and X11R6 is gcc 2.7.2. The gcc compiler
was compiled on the Sparc 10.

Thanks to the following folks:
Tim Carlson <>
Casper Dik <casper@holland.Sun.COM>
Rasana Atreya <>
Rich Pieri <> (Russ Poffenberger)

Casper's response was the most succinct:

This is not an fvwm problem but a X11R6 problem; the newer framebuffers are
not supported by the X Consortium.
You'll need to run Sun's own X server (which does work fine with the exception
of not being able to use the newest X extensions).

I used /usr/openwin/bin/Xsun as the X server. Problem Solved.

Many thanks,


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