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Xanda - /dev/project - Linux Refresh all or an X screen Kde-Gnome desktop

Linux or UNIX desktop systems are quite stable. However, some time weird things happen like unreadable screen and confusing application causing massive screen messed up, which makes it difficult to read what is on the Linux desktop.

Generally, I have observed that most users prefer to hit CTRL+ALT+Back Space or just kills the X session. However, there is way to get rid of this problem.

xrefresh is a simple X command that causes all or part of your screen to be repainted. This is useful when system messages have messed up your screen. Xrefresh maps a window on top of the desired area of the screen and then immediately unmaps it, causing refresh events to be sent to all applications. By default, a window with no
background is used, causing all applications to repaint smoothly. However, the various options can be used to indicate that a solid background (of any color) or the root window background should be used instead.

Just type the xrefresh:

$ xrefresh

You can also pass -white and -black option to xrefresh command:

$ xrefresh -white


$ xrefresh -black


  • -white: Use a white background. The screen just appears to flash quickly, and then repaint (this is a default).
  • -black: Use a black background (in effect, turning off all of the electron guns to the tube). This can be somewhat disorienting as everything goes black for a moment.