gnome-settings-daemon fails to start
gnome-settings-daemon needs a local dbus session to work, and fails to
start if one is not present. GDM automatically starts a dbus session
for you, but if you're using some other DM or using startx with a
.xinitrc file, you need to manually start the dbus session. Put this
in your X startup file (.xinit for startx, .xsession for a DM):
Code Listing 1.1: Starting a dbus session
eval `dbus-launch --exit-with-session --sh-syntax`
Make sure it's before the line that runs gnome-session (or
gnome-settings-daemon, if you're starting that directly).
Alternatively, if you're using startx and not doing anything special
in your .xinitrc, you can remove your .xinitrc and set the XSESSION to
gnome in your .profile or in /etc/rc.conf. This will correctly start
dbus before starting gnome-session.