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Jess M.
Jess M., Computer Support Specialist
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Linux mint 17.1 / Lenovo T400 Laptop was having audio

Customer Question

Hi,
linux mint 17.1 / Lenovo T400 Laptop
was having audio problems so... ran "sudo apt-get -f install" then removed & reinstalled pulse audio but now, boot process does not complete.
I see the Mint icon app for a second, then just get a black screen with the mouse arrow - no errr messages
Mouse moves, caps lock light comes on & off so kb & mouse are active.after backing up files & software using built-in backup app, I've tried....
* interrupt boot sequence (hold shift), set network on, drop to cli then input -
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
* also tried rm-rf .cinnamondisclaimer - I don't really know what i'm doing, just randomly following bits I've found on the mint blogs. Not getting anywhere so, that's why I'm reaching out or helpLast note: I have and can boot on to the mint 171 CD
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Software
Expert:  George Sibiya replied 10 months ago.

Hi,

Welcome to JustAnswer and thank you for using us. I have experience with Ubuntu and I should be able to assist. I will start with two questions and further ones as we progress

1. What are the contents of this file /etc/X11/default-display-manager ?

2. Just so we can rule out some other problems, since you have already looked at some blogs have you already tried this one https://community.linuxmint.com/tutorial/view/842 ?

Regards,

G

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi,
file /etc/X11/default-display-manager = /usr/sbin/mdm
nothing else in there
will try the other suggestion later - am off to the dentist ;-(
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi, tried all suggestions but, didn't change anything... still a black screen with the [active] mouse cursor plus, keyboard caps-lock lights when I press the key, I can see from my router, it's connected to the LAN - so I conclude, the services all booted OK, there's 100Gb free on the hard disk, memtest is OKHave connected an external monitor as well... same black screen
vid controller HW & driver must be OK because I can boot from CD and the screen's fine (both screens) - or am I reading too much in to that?
thx
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Secure Remote Assistance. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
note lsmod gives response radeon
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
uname -r ..... 3.13.0-37-generic
Expert:  George Sibiya replied 10 months ago.

Ok thank for the update. I am a little held up right now I'll opt out for now just to allow other experts to contribute. I'll get back to it later today.

Expert:  Bruce Wilner replied 10 months ago.

Hello. Can't do secure remote assistance if the box won't even boot. It isn't a good idea if you "don't know what [you're] doing" (YOUR OWN WORDS) to mess around with various add-ons at the command-line level. Reinstall FROM SCRATCH and get it to boot COMPLETELY, ALL BY ITSELF, before undertaking any modifications. Remember: Linux has degraded DRAMATICALLY over the last ten years, and you are working on a hybrid that every would-be "expert" has contributed to, resulting in a hodgepodge that now exhibits the level of professionalism formerly chargeable only to Microsoft Windows.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi Bruce,
I've worked out...the box does boot. By that I mean, ctrl-alt-F1 opens a login prompt: I can login and get a command line prompt. Also, the box connects to the internet.
I've run
apt-get update
apt-get upgrade
lsmod gives response radeon
uname -r ..... 3.13.0-37-genericboth run OK but, still no GUI (cinnamon error?)
Expert:  Bruce Wilner replied 10 months ago.

If you are getting a login prompt, then you specified the wrong option during installation. I hate to tell you to go through all that jazz again, but please go through all that jazz again and pay EXTREMELY CLOSE ATTENTION. You will be asked whether you want logins to default to TERMINAL MODE or X-WINDOWS/VISUAL MODE (in which case a program called XDM, the X-WINDOWS DISPLAY MANAGER, will pop up to collect your username and password. This is different from the login "prompt" you describe because it's within a dialogue box with "OK" and "Cancel" buttons.

I can't give you remote instructions for how to configure XDM to run by default. That is driven through the /etc/lines or /etc/inittab file that determines, for each available input connection, what process to run, i.e., whether a GETTY (which collects login and password ***** dull, command-line-looking prompts) or whether an XDM (which will post a dialogue box to collect your credentials). Such instructions would only cause confusion. If you redo that part of the installation, YOU WILL BE PROMPTED to choose console-mode login or graphical-mode login for the default session style.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I'm getting confused here and I think we may be getting lines crossed...
I had a running, stable system except for my audio output. To fix this, it was suggested to run:
sudo apt-get -f install" and then remove & reinstall pulse audio - done, no errors
It is from this point on, that I have the black screen issue.When I boot from a CD, I can see my file structure and all files/folders (which I've backed up using linux backup manager)
I then ran apt-get update && apt-get upgrade - done, no errors but still have the black screenA complete reinstall is the big hammer approach I'd expect in a windows setup, not under Linux(?)If I do have to go this route, can I reinstall without having to reinstall all my apps, structure & data?
Expert:  Bruce Wilner replied 10 months ago.

I agree, the approach sounds tragic, but it's the only way to assure that all the dependencies (far-reaching "tentacles," if you will) are taken care of. Linux is NOT what it used to be. It is a profoundly disorganized mess. If you wanted to run a real UNIX system, robustly built for professionals, the home user's only choice nowadays is Apple.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
holding back on fresh install... to get some work done, have gone in to HUD
sudo service lightdm startbut I need a better fix
Expert:  Bruce Wilner replied 10 months ago.

It sounds to me like you're happy just trying whatever random measures to get the problem fixed. Good luck!

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