Since I first wrote this I've talked to others that
have had success building the remember patch into the
mandrake specific flux source, which seems to help
alleviate some of the problems that I had, which in
turn led me to put together this HOWTO.  

This document is my best attempt at filling a void in
the "how to" world of linux configuration,
specifically while working with the cool but somewhat
quirky Mandrake 9.0 distribution (doesn't use an
~/.xsession or ~/.xinitrc file by default).

This document is published under the GNU General
Public License and you are free to duplicate,
distribute it, change it (hopefully improving it!),
pretty much whatever, as long as this license
notification remains intact.

Installing Fluxbox (or probably any other window
manager) in Mandrake 9.0:

If you are installing such things in RPM format then
you can probably quit right here because you are
unlikely to have any problems!

If, on the other hand, you want to build a wm from
source you might find this information quite useful.

My experience is concerning the compiling and
installation of Fluxbox-0.1.14 *with* the infamous
"Remember" patch; something that at the time of this
writing appeared nonexistant in RPM format.

Download the software:
Get the source tar.gz for flux at:

Then get the Remember patch from:

Follow the directions (at least the install MUST be
done as su/root!):

gunzip remember-0.1.14.gz
tar xvfz fluxbox-0.1.14.tar.gz
cd fluxbox-0.1.14
patch -p1 < path_to/remember-0.1.14
make install

No errors? Cool!

Now the root of my real problem... how to get fluxbox
to show in the "sessions" menu in GDM (it's likely to
be much the same problem AND solution if you are using
KDM or whatever instead).

NOTE: I'm not sure how much of the following is
absolutely neccessary! I'm not really a programmer or
any sort of "hacker" so some of this stuff might be
redundant or even (gasp!) WRONG! The following is a
compilation of stuff gathered from various sources and
all I know is that it >>works<< with *my* install of
Mandrake 9.0 and GDM.

Open a terminal as root.

$ cd /etc/X11/gdm/Sessions

You will see several other scripts for other wms
there. Look at them.. pretty self-explanatory.

Create a script in /etc/X11/gdm/Sessions with your
favorite editor and call it "fluxbox". It should
contain the following:

exec /usr/local/bin/fluxbox

Save the script and then make it executable with:

$ chmod a+x fluxbox


$ cd /etc/X11/wmsession.d

This directory contains OTHER startup scripts, I
believe for Xsession. You will find scripts in there
that begin with a two digit number like "02GNOME" or
"07IceWM". Create another script in this directory
called fluxbox that BEGINS with a two digit number NOT
already in use, for example "08fluxbox". This script
should contain:

DESC=A Light and nice looking window manager
exec /usr/X11R6/bin/startfluxbox

Save it. This script does NOT need to be executable.

Next switch to /usr/X11R6/bin and create a third
script called "startfluxbox". It should contain:

exec /usr/local/bin/fluxbox

This script MUST be made executable with:

$ chmod a+x startfluxbox

Next, while still in su/root, do the next two

$ fndSession


$ chksession -l

If all went well you should have gotten back a listing
of all valid wms including your newly installed
fluxbox :)

I'm sure there is some command that will make these
changes take effect; I just rebooted. You should now
be able to select your newly compiled install of
fluxbox (or whatever) from your respective display
manager (GDM).

Good luck!