Whonix Host Calamares Branding Suggestion

All clear, then if you don’t mind I will upload/modify files in /Whonix/whonix-libvirt/ git repository and let you sort it out.

I wouldn’t know how to do it.


Yes. Please add to git. I’ll sort out any file conflicts.

me wrote:

Could you please modify config to point to some file included in anon-icon-pack?

Seems not possible.

Seems good.


Rename in config file better.

see pull request

Hope it’s not too messy…
I’ll test it again once it’s merged/

You may also want to have a closer look at /usr/bin/install-whonix-host, which is the wrapper that invokes Calamares (when one clicks on the install icon on the desktop. It’s the default calamares-settings-debian version, I just changed the name debian -> Whonix-Host).

# Wrapper for running calamares on Whonix-Host live media

# Stale file left behind by live-build that messes with partitioning
sudo mv /etc/fstab /etc/fstab.orig.calamares

# Access control to run calamares as root for xwayland
xhost +si:localuser:root
pkexec calamares
xhost -si:localuser:root

# Restore stale fstab, for what it's worth
sudo mv /etc/fstab.orig.calamares /etc/fstab
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All merged. Looks really good in theory. But untested. Added some git commits on top (config-package-dev, overwrite files owned by other packages). Could you please review the commit history? Let me know if there are any package installation issues or if any more files should be hidden.

Even if not using gnome shell, these files configure gnome apps. I think the way this works is that the config copiles to a gschema file which is then used by gnome applications. Since we don’t want to do what that file implements (and less so we want that to leak into the installed system), I added a config-package-dev hide just now.

Great. Tested here:

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Simple Whonix-Host new visual suggestion:

  • Default desktop image changed to white-greyish color
  • Desktop icons: home, file system, trash, mounted devices
  • Xfce4-panel up, not down (also helps differentiating from Whonix gw and ws).


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Looks good!

Would be useful for both gateway and host? I.e. different settings for workstation. Or better different background image everywhere, gateway, workstation, host?

New package required? Or fits elsewhere? Ideally we won’t be inventing 3 new packages.

Can you create these settings files? I think described somewhere in forums how to invent these.

Setting files are here, right?

I don’t know how you wish to integrate it in your code, but I guess there will be some kind of check whether running ws, gw or host and based on that right setting files would apply during build?

Yes, I think ideally we should at least slightly differentiate between the gw and the ws. Could be enough to change Desktop background images.

What I could already do is upload new skel setting files on github and then you could have a look and see how it best fits.

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No. That’s not how it works for the most part. A package that gets installed will ship the files as included by the package. There’s no check during build. That is because Whonix is supposed to be upgradeable through apt dist-upgrade. Therefore as little logic as possible happens during the build process as this would be unavailable for already installed systems / VMs.

whonix-xfce-desktop-config is currently installed by default in gateway, workstation, kicksecure. (xfce version)

Package name whonix-xfce-desktop-config is outdated. There’s little Whonix specific about this package. (Except link to Whonix Live documentation.) The part whonix- could be removed from that package name but I am not sure what to replace it with to mean both Whonix and Kicksecure. There’s not much Kicksecure specific too. And dist-xfce-desktop-config is a kinda silly name. Also it causes some work to change package names. Hence I just kept the name as is for now.

Name dist and anondist are not great names anyhow. I am also undecided how much confusion a package with a name including kicksecure causes inside Whonix. For example at the moment kicksecure-base-files isn’t installed in Whonix. It gets replaced by whonix-base-files. Therefore there would be no way to check “this version of Whonix is based on this version of Kicksecure”. But shouldn’t matter for now as there isn’t much Kicksecure outreach for now and versions Whonix / Kicksecure can probably stay the same for a long time.

Yes, please.
Please keep the settings files as minimal as possible.
(Similar to examples in https://github.com/Whonix/whonix-xfce-desktop-config/tree/master/etc/skel/.config/xfce4 .)
Ideally just 1 file per setting and changing only the very setting we want to change.

Whonix-Host ISO Live (to be similar to Tails Live) maybe shouldn’t encourage, make it encouraging to mount the host (internal) drive?

All clear.

Ok, will do.

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See here (Whonix-Host files only for now):

I added a modification of thunar.xml which gives the option to delete a file or a directory on right mouse click (instead of only having the option of ‘Move to Trash’) . It was default behavior on xfce4 until debian 10.

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Maybe for gw and ws only one of them could be changed to differentiate between the two?

We could only change desktop background of workstation for now for example…

Would something as simple as this be OK?

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current thunar settings file: https://github.com/Whonix/security-misc/blob/master/etc/skel/.config/xfce4/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml/thunar.xml

diff / your proposed additions:

  <property name="last-view" type="string" value="ThunarIconView"/>
  <property name="last-location-bar" type="string" value="ThunarLocationEntry"/>
  <property name="last-icon-view-zoom-level" type="string" value="THUNAR_ZOOM_LEVEL_100_PERCENT"/>
  <property name="misc-single-click" type="bool" value="false"/>
  <property name="misc-show-delete-action" type="bool" value="true"/>

Could you please send a pull request against https://github.com/Whonix/security-misc/blob/master/etc/skel/.config/xfce4/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml/thunar.xml

I guess then only line <property name="misc-show-delete-action" type="bool" value="true"/> is needed to be added.

Otherwise could you please explain the rationale for the other changes?


However, getting rid of the XFCE logo background would be good anyhow since we’re not really a fashion focused XFCE distribution.

Yes. Considered improvement.

Yes, only this line is needed. Rest is noise.
Pull request:

How, do you like this for whonix-gw? (not meant to be beautiful. just easier to differentiate between gw and ws, and possibly Whonix-Host)

Great. Template here:

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Good enough.

Template xml file:


site:debian.org "/usr/share/backgrounds/"

default (therefore only on the host):



I am not sure yet if that will actually work. Two sources of issues:

  • mistake in config file by me
  • XFCE does not like symlinks
  • copying over the symlink from /etc/skel to /home/user goes wrong


ls -la ~/.config/xfce4/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml

lrwxrwxrwx 1 user3 user3 26 Mar 21 14:58 xfce4-desktop.xml -> xfce4-desktop.xml.anondist

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It’s copied from skel to user home as a file. Not as a symlink. Therefore that’s functional.

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