Sunday, 10 March 2013

GConf daemon issue in GNOME 3.4.2, openSUSE 12.2

 Recently I noticed that some GTK based applications in GNOME 3.4.2, openSUSE 12.2 were misbehaving or throwing a tantrum and are refusing to start or crashing when they start. The applications which had these issues were:-
  • Tomboy
  • Browsers (SeaMonkey and Firefox)
  • Gnome Terminal but not xterm.
 The issue occurrence was random and the only pattern i noticed was that when issue showed up in one application others would also have these weird issues. The only way to rectify these issues was to restart the machine when these anomalies disappeared. Firefox and SeaMonkey gave an error in pop up when starting up "Configuration server couldn't be contacted: D-BUS error: The GConf daemon is currently shutting down."
Screenshot of error in Firefox
Firefox SeaMonkey Configuration server couldn't be contacted: D-BUS error: The GConf daemon is currently shutting down.
 I found a solution / workaround for these issues in Fedora forums . All i had to do is "kill" the GConf daemon which is the root cause of the issue. It seems that the daemon would automatically start up whenever any application which needs it is started, hence there is no need to manually start this daemon again. I opened "System Monitor" through application launcher (Alt+F2) using the command "gnome-system-monitor".
Alt+F2 Application Launcher gnome-system-monitor
Then i opened "Processes" tab and right clicked on GConf daemon and killed it.
GNOME System Monitor "Processes" tab Kill GConf daemon
 After doing that all applications mentioned above worked fine. I also noticed that I could kill the daemon from application launcher (Alt+F2) too using the command "killall gconfd-2"
Application Launcher (Alt+F2)  killall gconfd-2

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