Bug 965552 - sagemath can't launch, no xterm
sagemath can't launch, no xterm
Product: Fedora
Classification: Fedora
Component: sagemath (Show other bugs)
x86_64 Linux
unspecified Severity medium
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Assigned To: Paulo Andrade
Fedora Extras Quality Assurance
Depends On:
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Reported: 2013-05-21 07:00 EDT by Nivag
Modified: 2015-02-17 10:17 EST (History)
4 users (show)

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Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: Bug Fix
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Last Closed: 2015-02-17 10:17:27 EST
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Description Nivag 2013-05-21 07:00:59 EDT
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:21.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/21.0
Build Identifier: 

I installed Fedora beta RC2, applied all updates, and installed sagemath (note that xterm is not installed, I use caja).

Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:
1.clicking on sagemath in the menu
Actual Results:  
clicking on sagemath in the menu brings up a dialog:

Could not launch 'Sagemath'

Failed to execute child process
"xterm" (no such file or directory)

Expected Results:  
Sagemath should come up in a terminal

(I've compiled & run sage directly, so I know what to expect)
Comment 1 Nivag 2013-06-16 05:03:45 EDT
still a problem in F19 TC3
Comment 2 Paulo Andrade 2013-07-08 09:20:32 EDT
Sorry for the delay. I confess I do not know how
to query or force the settings of the default terminal
application to be used by whatever application
is reading the sagemath.desktop file, as it only


I know about:

$ xdg-settings --list
Known properties:
  default-url-scheme-handler    Default handler for URL scheme
  default-web-browser           Default web browser

I am reassing to xdg-utils maintainer, to attempt
to properly triage the problem, so that it can be
reassigned better.
Comment 3 Rex Dieter 2013-07-08 09:31:55 EDT
I don't think xdg-utils has any facility for terminal handling.  It includes an xdg-terminal tool (which is currently experimental and unsupported, so is not currently included in fedora's xdg-utils packaging)

If sage needs/uses xterm, then it probably ought to include a dependency for it.
Comment 4 Rex Dieter 2013-07-08 09:35:01 EDT
On a similar, but unrelated note, I did see in /usr/bin/sage :

export SAGE_BROWSER=firefox

IMO, that would probably be better set to 

export SAGE_BROWSER=xdg-open

so each user's desktop-preferred browser is used instead (assuming that SAGE_BROWSER refers to a web-browser)
Comment 5 Paulo Andrade 2013-07-08 09:48:23 EDT
It appears the default terminal to use is DE
specific and configurable. Some distributions
have a generic x-terminal-emulator or similarly
named wrapper in /usr/bin.

At least for kde, in en_US it should be to go to:

System Settings ->
  Default Applications ->
    Default Component

Then, select
"Use Konsole as terminal application"

The default value in the text entry there appears
to be "xterm".

About the hardcoded SAGE_BROWSER, I am still to
find some time to debug it better on konqueror
at least, and there is already at least one bug
report about it. I hardcoded firefox because it
works, and not so well in other browsers. I also
noticed that the latest openjdk/icedtea-web
update broke the jmol applet for f18, f19 and
rawhide, so I also need to debug that to either
provide a patch or an as good as possible
description of the breakage (and I know the
plugin applet breaks so easily I am kind of
tired of debugging that for a long time, providing
a patch just to see it break again in a few
Comment 6 Rex Dieter 2013-07-08 09:50:12 EDT
I see sagemath.desktop includes:


so, desktops are supposed to handle this already (i think)

Reporter, what DE are you using (gnome, kde, mate, other)?
Comment 7 Nivag 2013-07-08 16:02:47 EDT
I am using Mate, and in 'Preferred Applications' ==> 'System' the 'Terminal Emulator' is set to 'MATE Terminal'.

The problem remains, even with F19 fully up-to-date as of about 20 minutes ago.

SageMath works fine when I install xterm.
Comment 8 Fedora End Of Life 2015-01-09 13:10:39 EST
This message is a notice that Fedora 19 is now at end of life. Fedora 
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Comment 9 Fedora End Of Life 2015-02-17 10:17:27 EST
Fedora 19 changed to end-of-life (EOL) status on 2015-01-06. Fedora 19 is
no longer maintained, which means that it will not receive any further
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