Installed 8.10 will not load Gnome desktop

Asked by Eamon

I installed Ubuntu 8.10 on the second hard disk of a PC that runs Windows 98 in the first hard disk. When I boot Grub runs OK and offers me Windows 98, which runs fine, and also Ubuntu. Choosing Ubuntu produces logon screen successfully. After logging in the screen blanks to the default light brown background with mouse arrow. Mouse arrow remains movable. Nothing else works. Nothing else happens. I waited up to 15 minutes for something to happen, but no joy. I am assuming it is simply that Gnome hasn't loaded, so no desktop is becoming available. Is there some special hot key I can press to force Gnome to load? Is there some command-line approach I can use to get Ubuntu to load the Gnome desktop. Does this all mean that Ubuntu installed, but without Gnome? The same installer disc (downloaded ISO from ubuntu.net) has worked on other machines. Help!

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Tom (tom6) said :
#1

Hi :)

It sounds like your machine may be below spec for a fully bloated Ubuntu and it's worth considering smaller linux distros instead. First one to try is Xubuntu as it's almost identical to Ubuntu
http://www.xubuntu.org/get

Note that in Linux smaller seldom means older. Many of the ultra-latest phones and such-like run on very tiny linux distros. My personal favourite though, for your type of machine is Wolvix but it's probably better to hunt around the DistroWatch site as it's a popular place for comparing different version of linux, different distros. Anyway, here's my personal top 4 but i'm not sure what the official Ubuntu opinion is ...
http://distrowatch.com

Wolvix Cub 1.1.0, it's more soothing on the eye than pretty. As a full linux it's easy to add programs to, very configurable and due to have a new release soon so it might be interesting to try beta testing the 2.0.0. The installer is the easiest of any distro i've tried and is worth trying even if it's just to learn how to install linux. Community is small but keen to help and explore
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=wolvix

AntiX is pretty and has a Window(ish) feel to it but instead of a "start button" it uses a right-click menu anywhere on the desktop. Created by women against war, find references to Lysatrata
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=antix

SliTaz, very tiny. Full linux so it's easy to add to and configure, made in french but translated to english
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=slitaz

Puppy, everyone's favourite. Easy to use but difficult to add programs to, hence lots of 'Puplets'. Installer is a bit awkward and login asks a lot of questions and it's slow to boot up unless you've installed it to hard-drive but has lots of eye-candy and appeals to people used to Windows. Has a large community keen to help
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=puppy

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)

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Tom (tom6) said :
#2

Note that Xubuntu is still very large and has lots of applications that all do the same thing. The other ones i suggested trying tend to be radically smaller and may well be much more appropriate.

Good luck with this and have fun
Regards from
Tom :)

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Tom (tom6) said :
#3
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Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#4

The machine is a reasonably powerful 1.7GHz Pentium 4 with 2MB of ram and a 60GB disk devoted to the Ubuntu installation. That should be plenty adequate, shouldn't it?

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Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#5

Sorry, that should have said 2GB of ram :-)

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Tom (tom6) said :
#6

lol, yup. That's way more than minimums lol

When you said a Win98 machine ... lol

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Tom (tom6) said :
#7

Does the Live Cd work? I mean you can boot into a live desktop session using the Ubuntu Cd without any trouble? If not there may be a hardware conflict but it's probably just something to do with the resolution, monitor settings or graphics setup.

http://www.fsf.org/resources/hw

Good luck and happy hunting
Regards from
Tom :)

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Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#8

The Live CD halts at the same point (empty screen with default background and mouse arrow). In the installed version I am presuming that X Windows is cool as the graphic logon screen is coming up and functioning OK, so what can be stopping Gnome from loading?

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#9

Hmmm, try the Xubuntu if you can and see if that's better for your system. Maybe try Wolvix too in case it's something specific to Ubuntu. I will have to leave this to others to answer and a few more people are likely to be around in the next couple of hours. I might be back later or else it'll be tomorrow.

Good luck and regards form
Tom :)

PS it's good if you answer this so the question is seen as "Open" rather than "Answered" ;)

Revision history for this message
Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#10

Thanks for your time, Tom.

I'm still inclined to try and get Ubuntu 8.10 working on this machine to stay in harmony with two other linux machines I use that have successfully installed 8.10..

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WAR10CK (reallover-gaurav) said :
#11

Hi Eamon , I had the same problem. It seems that trying XUbuntu would be a solution. I exactly had the same problem as my desktop hardware is not tht good,it is Celeron 2.0 Ghz process with just 128 Kb of cache and 384 MB of ram along with a 80 GB hardrive.
Good luck

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marcobra (Marco Braida) (marcobra) said :
#12

WAR10CK your pc is up the minimum required to install Ubuntu...

Only to try i have installed Ubuntu 8.10 standard 32 bits with success on a very old pc a 700 mhz with 256 mb of ram, using the Ubuntu alternate cd.

- Minimum system requirements to install Ubuntu 8.10 https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/SystemRequirements

Revision history for this message
WAR10CK (reallover-gaurav) said :
#13

Hi marcobra

Dude the installation for Ubuntu 8.10 Desktop edition was successful but the prom is The GNOME desktop does not loads after the log on screen.Can you suggest any other solution to forcibly load the GNOME desktop.
I installed Ubuntu from a Live CD, don't know much about the 'alternate cd'

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john (no2498) said :
#14

shut down push the esc button
select the non generic
an try to load the desk top

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marcobra (Marco Braida) (marcobra) said :
#15

Please describe something more what you see when you try to run your installed Ubuntu at startup...

Might be you need to pass to your kernel some starting options... or simply reconfigure your graphic layer.

We can help you

Thank you

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#16

I think the original problem posted by Eamon is different from the problem facing War10ck. Eamon's 1.7Ghz P4 with 2Gb Ram is a long way above minimum spec. I only suggested trying out the LiveCd of a couple of other versions of Linux in order to get some idea of whether this is an incompatibility issue and is worth looking up in
http://www.fsf.org/resources/hw

If another distro does work then we would at least know there's something odd about the Ubuntu install and would maybe be able to pin-down what the problem is.

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
WAR10CK (reallover-gaurav) said :
#17

Thanks Tom

I tried another versions and I was able to successfully install the Xubuntu on my desktop and it is working well.
But don't know how to mount my windows partitions so that I can access my whole hard drive from Linux.
Please help

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Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#18

I'm going to try the Xubuntu approach over the weekend. Should this be installed as a dual-boot with Ubuntu 8.10 (and with Windows 98) or should the Ubuntu be replaced with Xubuntu?

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#19

@ Eamon
lol, neither. The different linux's i have suggested should be able to run straight from the Cd without installing anything. If you can boot from any of them into a Windows(ish) desktop then that would tell us something about your machine and maybe would help us fix your problem there. If neither gets you to a working desktop then that would tell us something else and we'd try to take it from there. I only have the DistroWatch pages easily to hand but both allow you to navigate to download and burn the images as suggested in the 3rd link here. DistroWatch is a popular place for comparing different versions of linux and you'll notice that Wolvix is based on a completely different 'fork' from *buntu
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=xubuntu
http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=wolvix

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BootFromCD

Good luck with this. If you already have an Xubuntu disc then you'll probably be able to give us an answer within about 15mins of trying it out. Much faster than trying to get to grips with the hardware compatibility website and looking up your kit.

@War10ck
Great news, nicely done :) I think Xubuntu is probably the best distro for your machine. Hopefully we can help you tweak it all to perfection but please post any problems as a separate question
https://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+addquestion

Good luck and regards to you both from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#20

If you are still having trouble with this then please post it as a new question. Only the most recent questions tend to get looked at so posting/reposting a question just before america arrives online after work/school gives the best chance of getting a good few answers.
https://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+addquestion

If the problem has been resolved then please follow the link to the forum thread and mark it as Solved.

Good luck and many regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#21

I won't be able to get to the machine in question for a while, so I'll close this off as resolved by saying that I am facing the fact that the machine in question in one of the few that can't run Gnome with 8.10, and will try Xubuntu as suggested, or perhaps wait for 9.04 and try for Gnome again.

Thanks Tom and all who helped out with this.

Eamon

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Tom (tom6) said :
#22

Thanks Eamon - i think a lot of you worked very hard at that, above and beyond a they say ;0

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)

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Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#23

Tom, I can confirm that Xubuntu 8.10 installed fine on the machine that wouldn't accept Gnome with Ubuntu 8.10. Thanks for your encouragement and advice.

I'm still baffled why Xfe runs and Gnome won't. Has this happened before with previous Ubuntus?

Eamon

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#24

Xfce is very much lighter and uses different system than Gnome does. Usually when Gnome doesn't work it's because the machine is below spec but in your case i think there must just be some other hardware clash - i'm not sure why and i've not heard of it happening before, but then i've not had much experience and not read much about these issues. My approach is just to try different things out. Often just trying something different helps explain why the first way wouldn't work.

Sometimes i would then try the first thing again and find that it does work now, even though it didn't first time. The reason why would then almost magically appear a few months later. The human brain and random chance is brilliant like that. I think Xfce has all the fancy effects of compiz although it might use beryl, i'm not sure.

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
eddy (adityanawab) said :
#25

Hi Eamon:

I had a similar problem recently when I yanked out my usb stick without unmounting. Here is the solution

Solution: At the login screen follow the proceedure below::
1. crtl-alt-F2
2. At the prompt enter: sudo aptitude install ubuntu-desktop
3. Restart your computer.
All should be good if your experience is similar to mine.

Revision history for this message
sarasjain (sarasjain) said :
#26

hi tom i am facing the same problem as Eamon
My PC configuration is Intel pentium4 2.4GHz ,512MB RAM ,160 GB HDD
i am using dual boot with Windows XP

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#27

Hi spec machine with possibly only an issue with lower ram than you'd expect on such a system.

Please post this as a new question and possibly give a link to this threadhttps://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+addquestion

the link to this thread is
https://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+question/60608

Each machine is slightly different and anyway people don't look in "Solved" questions to find questions that need answers! lol, good luck with this.

I would suggest making a linux-swap partition of 1Gb, if you haven't already then that should help. Getting more Ram would be nice, if that's an option which it often isn't. Trying another distro to see if you get better results off their LiveCd (ie boot up off their Cd without installing anything to your machine) and trying the Ubutu Cd as a LiveCd to see what happens can be helpful. Also Eddy's plan looked worth trying and also Sam has shown me a handy link that might help
https://wiki.ubuntu.com/X/Config

Really the best plan is to post your question as a new question and then the people at the front desk should be able to help you, with any luck ;)

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#28
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sarasjain (sarasjain) said :
#29

hi tom
I tried Ubutu Cd as a LiveCd but the same problem occured

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sarasjain (sarasjain) said :
#30

Hi Tom

the system requirement shown on ubuntu website is fulfilled by my computer then why the ubuntu 8.10 not running on my computer .i install the ubuntu 8.10 on a computer of pentium D 3.0 ,512MB DDR RAM ,intel D865 motherboard and it works properly

can i got a xubuntu cd from shipit service

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Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#31

Please post this as a new question
https://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+addquestion

There might be a hardware conflict issue with your particular machine and people at the front desk might know how to deal with that. Clicking the ink to "+addquestion" will help you contact them.

Thanks and regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
slimmdiggity (slimmdogg420) said :
#32

I had the same problem on my HP Pavilion a1310n.Its a AMD athlon64 3700+ 2.2 ghz 1gb of ram integrated ATI graphics card (radeon express 200).XFCE works great and so does KDE but Gnome would not load.I get the login screen and when i try to login it just goes back to enter username and password.I really like Gnome but i am growing rather fond of XFCE and Xubuntu.A friend of mine has the same computer almost only thing thats different is he has a dual core P4.
Gnome works fine on his could this be an issue with the processor?

Revision history for this message
slimmdiggity (slimmdogg420) said :
#33

I had the same problem on my HP Pavilion a1310n.Its a AMD athlon64 3700+ 2.2 ghz 1gb of ram integrated ATI graphics card (radeon express 200).XFCE works great and so does KDE but Gnome would not load.I get the login screen and when i try to login it just goes back to enter username and password.I really like Gnome but i am growing rather fond of XFCE and Xubuntu.A friend of mine has the same computer almost only thing thats different is he has a dual core P4.
Gnome works fine on his could this be an issue with the processor?

Revision history for this message
slimmdiggity (slimmdogg420) said :
#34

Sorry for the double post.I forgot to add that it is not the version thats the issue i tried Hardy, Intrepid, and Jaunty.

Revision history for this message
sarasjain (sarasjain) said :
#35

the solution is here
boot from ubuntu cd and select your language
then in modes menu select safe grafics
and install ubuntu
i have tried .It works properly and every thing is running

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slimmdiggity (slimmdogg420) said :
#36

Would safe graphics mode minimize desktop effects and 3d games?

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#37

Slimm,
Please post all this as a new question
https://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+addquestion

Launchpad doesn't have a mecanism for deaking with old questions so until you post a new question about this you wont get many answers. At th moment you are using advice from 1 person who tried it once but if you post properly using the link i just gave then you'll probably hear more opinions from more people, and other peoples responses to that.

Good lck and regards from
Tom )

Revision history for this message
sarasjain (sarasjain) said :
#38

YES, In safe graphics mode the Visual Effects cant be enabled

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Tom (tom6) said :
#39

Launchpad doesn't have a mechanism for dealing with old questions, lol & i need to practice with a touch typing program ;) heheheh
https://answers.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+addquestion

Nicely done Sarajain, i had a feelng that was the case - thanks for clarifying that :)

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#40

Hi :)

Have you been able to test the new Ubuntu 10.04 before it gets officially released?
http://www.ubuntulinux.org/testing/lucid/beta1
Trying it as a LiveCd or as an extra dual/multi-boot would be ideal. Developers and everyone are keen to try to iron out any problems before 10.04 gets officially released so you might find faster & more effective answers to your bug reports which would make 10.04 work better on your system for you

Thanks and regards from
Tom :)

Revision history for this message
Eamon (eamon-maguidhir) said :
#41

Hi Tom, I've managed to get 9.10 to install and coexist with the W98, dual-booting via GRUB, so the goal was achieved. Will be trying 10.04 as LiveCD when officially released as I don't want any disruption on the machine (used by my son for study purposes) at this stage in the academic year.

Revision history for this message
Tom (tom6) said :
#42

Hi :)

Good plan. Of course a LiveCd session leaves the machine exactly the way it was before but the temptation would be to install it properly immediately afterwards
https://help.ubuntu.com/community/LiveCD

It is really great to hear you achieved the objective & i hope you have had some fun with it all too :)

Good luck and regards from
Tom :)