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xscreensaver-systemd - Man Page

lock the screen upon suspend, and inhibit screen-blanking during video playback.


xscreensaver-systemd [--verbose] [--version]


The xscreensaver-systemd program is a helper daemon launched by xscreensaver(1) for systemd(1) or elogind(8) integration.  It does two things:


Blanking-related problems take two forms: failing to connect to D-Bus; and other programs requesting stupid things.


Only one program at a time can register with systemd(1) or elogind(8) for screen-saver-related events, so if another screen saver is running as a part of the desktop environment, xscreensaver-systemd will be unable to launch.  This program has workarounds for Gnome and KDE, but if you are using something else, that might be a problem.

Chrome & Chromium (101.0)

  • Playing only audio in Chrome will prevent your screen from blanking.  Chrome sends the exact same "inhibit" reason for audio as for video, so we can't tell them apart.
  • Chrome prevents your screen from blanking when playing short, looping videos. This means that your screen won't blank when Chrome is showing a Twitter page (because those animated GIFs aren't really GIFs, they are MP4s).  This affects Tweetdeck as well.

    The proper way to fix this would be for Chrome to stop inhibiting once a video loops.  That way your multi-hour movie inhibits properly, but your looping GIF only inhibits for the first few seconds.

Firefox does not have either of these problems.

Mplayer (2:1.4)

Makes no attempt to inhibit the screen saver.  Use VLC instead.

MPV (0.33)

Makes no attempt to inhibit the screen saver.  Use VLC instead.


Most programs fail to re-enable screen blanking if they crash or are killed while playing.  We try to detect when this has happened, but that might not work with all versions of systemd, resulting in screen blanking remaining permanently disabled.  If that happens, killing and restarting xscreensaver-systemd is a workaround.

See Also

X(1), xscreensaver(1), xscreensaver-settings(1), xscreensaver-command(1), systemd(1), sd-bus(3), elogind(8)


Martin Lucina <martin@lucina.net>, 4-Jun-2019

Referenced By

xscreensaver(1), xscreensaver-auth(6), xscreensaver-gfx(6).

6.09-1.fc41 (11-Jun-2024) X Version 11