Desktop environments on FreeBSD are usually started by some kind of display manager, such as GDM or KDM. This is specially true for “heavy” desktops such as GNOME or KDE, which are almost impossible to run without one. On the other side, “lighter” desktops such as XFCE run just fine without a display manager. Steps to start XFCE without login manager are described in FreeBSD Handbook, but they require that user logs in and starts X server manually. The following article describes how to start XFCE automatically immediately after user logs onto local console.