I have put the following line in my /etc/bash.bashrc file:

chromium--kiosk www.bbc.co.uk

However I then get an error at start up:

(chromium:2100): Gtk-WARNING **: cannot open display:

If I set the Pi to boot into OS at startup, chromium never appears, but if I start a terminal window it suddenly opens chromium in kiosk mode and with the specified web page!

What am I doing wrong?

  • Put that in you xinitrc. – Tamara Wijsman Jan 15 '13 at 0:48
  • Which DE? If you're using Arch + Openbox, you could add it to the ~/.config/openbox/autostart, otherwise as @TomWijsman suggested, the ~/.xinitrc should work. I might put a (sleep 3 && command) & in there to wait for X to start. – nerdwaller Jan 15 '13 at 1:10

anything in the /etc/bash.bashrc is run when a shell starts up (which doesnt have an xdisplay) - see What is the .bashrc file? for more info. Try adding that line into the file that your desktop enviroment uses when it logs in the user.

If you are using lxde, which I assume,


and edit it to your specifiacitons: so it should look like:

[Desktop Entry] 


Exec=chromium--kiosk www.bbc.co.uk
  • 2
    Thanks agovizer. Just to confirm what I did to get this to work. I added "@chromium --kiosk www.bbc.co.uk" to the autostart file in /etc/xdg/lxsession/LXDE/. It now boots into the desktop and then starts chromium in kiosk mode. It would be nice to never see the desktop, but that is just a minor gripe. Other than that it works as I need. – coolblue2000 Jan 15 '13 at 13:13

You could use "screenly" it actually can run in kiosk mode (using UZBL) and can even be interactive with a keyboard and mouse. (ability to lock to certain sites and block actions available as well). You could accomplish this easily though by simply scheduling a web asset to that URL. Screenly boots instantly never showing the desktop.

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