slim - Man Page

Simple LogIn Manager


slim [options] [<arguments>]


SLiM is a lightweight login manager for X11, allowing the initialization of a graphical session by entering username and password in a login screen. It is desktop-agnostic and should work (suitably configured) with any session style.


-c /path/to/config

select a non-standard configuration file instead of /etc/slim.conf


run as a daemon


do NOT run as a daemon


be systemd compatible by disabling consolekit support. This option does nothing if consolekit support has not been built in.

-p /path/to/theme

display a preview of the theme. An already running X11 session is required for theme preview.

-w <www>x<hhh>

set the size of the window used for theme preview. This option is only valid after a -p option


display a brief help message


display version information


slim -d

run slim in daemon mode

slim -p /usr/share/slim/themes/default -w 800x600

preview of the default theme at low resolution

Starting Slim at Boot

Please refer to the documentation of your Operating System to make slim automatically startup after the system boots. In particular, the method is very different between SysV, OpenRC, runit and systemd init processes.


Global configuration is stored in the /etc/slim.conf file. See the comments inside the file for a detailed explanation of the options.

Usage and Special Usernames

When started, slim will show a login panel; enter the username and password of the user you want to login as.

Special usernames:


open an xterm login console. No password needed


quit slim. No password needed. See the note in Bugs.


shutdown the machine


reboot the machine


power-suspend the machine

See the configuration file for customizing the above commands. The 'halt' and 'reboot' commands need the root password, and hence may not  work on systems where root login is disabled.



executes a custom command (by default takes a screenshot)  


choose session type from session list.


When run as a daemon from OpenRC (and possibly other init systems), causing SLiM to quit can sometimes result in a blank screen and unresponsive computer. This includes when using the "exit" special username.

Probably still a few more but I'm working on them.


Simone Rota <>

Johannes Winkelmann <>

Nobuhiro Iwamatsu <>

Rob Pearce <>

See Also


See the online documentation at the SLiM web site for further information on themes, FAQs, etc.

Referenced By


The man pages slimcat(1) and unslim(1) are aliases of slim(1).

January 14, 2023