[xubuntu] Failing to sleep after inactivity - power manager error?

Bug #1441460 reported by Michael Kalisz on 2015-04-08
This bug affects 45 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
xfce4-power-manager (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

Newly installed XUbuntu 14.10 on 2 different machines but both experience the same problem.


Failing to sleep after inactivity and a "xfce4 power manager error"

When setting the machine in xfce4-power-manager to suspend after e.g. 15 minutes the machine will fail to suspend.

This is the message that meets me when I login after a failed suspend:

Power Manager Error
Did not receive a reply. Possible causes include: the
remote application did not send a reply, the message
bus security policy blocked the reply, the reply
timeout expired, or the network connection was


I can suspend from the logout dialog box.

The following command suspends the system just fine:
$ dbus-send --system --print-reply --dest="org.freedesktop.UPower" /org/freedesktop/UPower org.freedesktop.UPower.Suspend

$ xfce4-power-manager --dump
Xfce power manager version 1.4.1
With policykit support
With network manager support
Can suspend: True
Can hibernate: False
Authorized to suspend: True
Authorized to hibernate: False
Authorized to shutdown: True
Has battery: False
Has brightness panel: True
Has power button: True
Has hibernate button: True
Has sleep button: True
Has LID: False

So I guess It's some kind of auth or policykit issue.

Colin Watson (cjwatson) wrote :

I expect xfce4-power-manager isn't necessarily the right target for this, but it's certainly closer to the mark than Launchpad itself.

affects: launchpad → xfce4-power-manager (Ubuntu)
john (av6john) wrote :

I had the same error with a laptop.

Some output.
Xfce power manager version 1.4.3
With policykit support
With network manager support
Can suspend: True
Can hibernate: False
Authorized to suspend: True
Authorized to hibernate: False
Authorized to shutdown: True
Has battery: True
Has brightness panel: True
Has power button: True
Has hibernate button: True
Has sleep button: True
Has LID: True

Michael Kalisz (michael-kalisz) wrote :

Just updated to latest release:

Description: Ubuntu 15.04
Release: 15.04
Codename: vivid

An wanted to let you know that it is still ta same problem except that now after it fails to suspend you get the following auth dialog: http://i.imgur.com/Go2uGBA.png

Does the system lock the screen at some point before it tries to suspend?

Michael Kalisz (michael-kalisz) wrote :

Yes it does.

Please set light-locker to lock the session “When the screensaver is deactivated” and test again.

Michael Kalisz (michael-kalisz) wrote :

Testing... :)

Noticed though that teh setting does not seem to "stick" i.e I set "“When the screensaver is deactivated” and logout/login the setting is back to "“When the screensaver is activated”

Michael Kalisz (michael-kalisz) wrote :

changing the light-locker setting to “When the screensaver is deactivated” solves the problem :)

Just tested by setting the timeout to something low and the machine got suspended....

If we can just make this setting persistent i.e. survive a logout or reboot. Does that work for you?

Sean Davis (bluesabre) wrote :

Since you're using 15.04 now, can you try the following steps?

Light Locker now persists its own settings, so we will want to do away with the current autostart launcher. Remove the following file:

Log out and back in.

Then open Xfce Power Manager Settings (xfce4-power-manager-settings). Go to the Security tab and make your changes in there. The settings should all persist across multiple reboots.

Let me know if this works for you.

Yes, it works for me :)

Thank you for taking the time to help me out.

The initial bug will be fixed once light-locker does not depend on VT switching anymore [1].

Changing the mentioned light-locker option or allowing inactive user sessions to suspend the system (logind policy) are possible workarounds.

[1] https://github.com/the-cavalry/light-locker/issues/22

Changed in xfce4-power-manager (Ubuntu):
status: New → Invalid

I noticed that the above procedure works fine AFTER you login.

Another scenario is when you just start the machine and leave it at the login prompt/dialog without logging in...The machine will the not get suspended.

This is not a big issue for me...but I guess others might be bothered.

Is there a global "“When the screensaver is deactivated” setting somewhere?

This is a known limitation (bug 894484) and some workarounds may be available.

xfce4-power-manager can only do power management if 1) it is started after login and 2) the user session is not marked as inactive.
A session will be marked as inactive once you lock the screen and the VT switch occurs. Enabling the mentioned setting will delay the switch and prevent the session from becoming inactive.

Changed in xfce4-power-manager (Ubuntu):
status: Invalid → Confirmed
Markus Kwaśnicki (mrkskwsnck) wrote :

I just stumbled over this issue, because I am experiencing similar behaviour on a freshly installed Xubuntu 17.04 Zesty Zapus:

In a logged in session my laptop cannot suspend and after some inactivity time it displays an "Access Denied" notification. The only constraint for me is, this issue occurs only when battery powered. Though, with the power cord plugged in, suspend after inactiity works, indeed.

Ulrich Norbisrath (ulno) wrote :

I confirm this issue. I am running xubuntu 17.10. i.e. xfce with lightdm on my thinkpad x230. None of the mentioned work-arounds works for me as I don't want to give up locking the screen with a password. The policy suggestions seem to have no affect (in addition to allowing me to select suspend in xfce). I can suspend manually and also suspend when closing the lid. But leaving my laptop sitting without power with a locked screen will not suspend and drain the battery.

So, the agreed work-around is NOT to use lightdm if you want power management and a password secured login? Would upgrading to bionic beaver (18.04) make any difference?

Fan Zhang (bl4ck5un) wrote :

I can confirm the issue remains in bionic beaver.

ajgreeny (ajg-charlbury) wrote :

I can also confirm this problem in both Lubuntu and Xubuntu 18.04.

Zack Smith (zack-smith) wrote :

No fix after nearly four years and nine releases. Unsubscribing since I'll be in a grave before this bug gets addressed.

Raoul Duke (drrnrss) wrote :

This fix worked for me in Xubuntu 18.04 Bionic
My laptop now successfully suspends after the inactivity period.
Note that I had to restart in order for it to take effect:


Initial report was filed against a now outdated Xubuntu release.

It is quite possible that people are encountering a similar (but different) problem now after things had been changed under the hood. New report can be found here:


Changed in xfce4-power-manager (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Invalid
To post a comment you must log in.
This report contains Public information  Edit
Everyone can see this information.

Duplicates of this bug

Other bug subscribers