Bienvenido! - Willkommen! - Welcome!

Bitácora Técnica de Tux&Cía., Santa Cruz de la Sierra, BO
Bitácora Central: Tux&Cía.
Bitácora de Información Avanzada: Tux&Cía.-Información
May the source be with you!

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Ubuntu 'White Screen of Death'

somewhat of a workaround:
Hold down left-shift on boot to enter GRUB
hit "e" to edit the kernel
remove "quiet splash" and replace with "nomodeset single"
control-x to boot
A system recovery screen appears, I selected "start ubuntu normally" (or whatever option is similar) which put me through to a shell login prompt. After logging in to the basic shell I typed:
$ sudo /etc/init.d/gdm start
Which, much to my surprise, launched the Lucid Lynx gui.
I'm using the standard drivers for my video card (I attempted, but failed to install ATI's catalyst control center.)
Re: 10.04 LTS RC: Blank Screen at startup

For me, I seem to have found the workaround.
First, credit where credit is due:
So, to make this change (remember to ALWAYS preserve a backup of your files)
$ cd /etc/default
$ sudo gedit grub
The editor will come up
Locate this line:
Change it to:
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="radeon.modeset=0 quiet splash"
Save, reboot, and voila!
When Lucid is installed, it defaults to KMS - Kernel Mode Setting, which means the Kernel determines the graphics mode to launch in. It seems that ATI cards don't like this and cause the Blank Screen of Death(tm).
Further reading:
Further note: I make no promises as to whether this change will work on "your" system.
This may be of help:
Edit: Did you run
$ sudo nvidia-xconfig
 in the terminal and restart the X-server?
Lucid Lynx and NVIDIA video cards
I’ve installed nvidia-current. Now
lsmod | grep nvidia
shows me that the nvidia module is loaded, everything is ok, except that i can’t turn on the composite and all those visual effects, that worked fine in karmic.The problem solved, now i’m using native NVIDIA 195.36.24 driver. Here is what i’ve done:
This really sucks. Unfortunately even the latest driver available in Lucid’s “Hardware Drivers” menu doesn’t support my NVidia GT 240.
Worse yet, the Nouveau driver doesn’t work very well with my card, either, leaving strange artifacts on screen during startup and locking up the X Server every now and then.

If the nvidia drivers don’t allow you to have special effects, just try this :

blacklist nouveau
blacklist lbm-nouveau the following file :
.. then :
#update-initramfs -u .. in a terminal.
Download and install normally the nvidia proprietary drivers. Restart the X server … and everything should be OK!
On a terminal
(alt+ctrl+F1)login and type:
ps -ef

cat /etc/X11/xorg.conf
Try to ssh into it when it freezes, if you can. Many times I've had a hard X server lockup, but I can still login remotely and kill X.
To ssh into the machine, you need another machine on the same network (it can be any OS). Install openssh-server, and start it with
/etc/init.d/ssh start
On your remote machine, install openssh-client or PUTTY (Windows). Then on remote host do
ssh antonio@
Of course you would use your username and the ip address of the machine you're trying to log into.
sudo ssh-keygen -t dsa -f /etc/ssh/ssh_host_dsa_key
sudo /usr/sbin/sshd -t
It would be very good if we could ssh into the machine after the crash, it will be much easier to figure out what is wrong.
ssh's port is 22,
Try a
sudo apt-get --purge remove openssh-server
and reinstall. I've never even had to generate the keys by hand, so I don't know why this isn't working.

You could also try installing a telnet server, that might be easier to do, and we can still log in and look at the machine (or if we can't, then we probably can't with ssh either).

sudo aptitude install telnetd
I just tried this, and it required nothing else. I could telnet to my machine immediately (it starts the daemon on demand).
You don't need telnetd on the remote machine, just "telnet" (the client). Telnet should also be available on a Windows machine, just start the command prompt and run "telnet".
Logging in:
Run telnet
Inside telnet: open (or whatever your IP is)
You should get a login prompt, where you type your username and passwd.
An open port means that a) nothing is blocking the port and b) something is listening on that port. If you have no firewall, it should just work; mine started up telnetd automatically when I tried to log in (the "internet daemon" inetd listens on port 23 and starts telnetd). I have tried this from an XP machine.
Is anything else on your machine out of whack? Is all this trouble another manifestation (like the lock ups) of a deeper problem?


it sounds like you have enabled desktop effects (wobbly windows and the like) before you removed your video drivers. by doing that you have disabled hardware 3d acceleration which the desktop effects needs to run. instead the desktop effects are just showing a 'white screen'.
im not sure howto disable desktop effects from loading on login so id recommend that you run the command
sudo apt-get remove compiz beryl
after logging into recovery mode
(see: to learn more about howto boot into recovery mode)
if you want the desktop effects back you will have to re-install you restricted video drivers and then install compiz or beryl from synaptic.
got to a terminal and did a
sudo apt-get remove compiz beryl
but it reported a bunch of packages no longer needed that weren't removed automatically, mainly compiz libraries IIRC. Simply running the above command did not fix the system, but running
sudo apt-get autoremove
after removing compiz and beryl did fix it.
You can also try this:
...and this:


sudo apt-get install build-essential
sudo dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg
 and set the following options:
- Kernel framebuffer device NO (in your xorg.conf this option should appear as "false")
- 16 bit (instead of the default 24-bit selection)
Restart X and see if you have any improvement.
install the new Nvidia drivers using these steps:

0. sudo apt-get remove nvidia*
1. Ctrl-Alt-F1
2. sudo /etc/init.d/gdm stop
3. sudo su
4. sh ./
5. go through all the prompts
6. restart
I also found an interesting thread about the new drivers:
Using the following command should speed up applications like Firefox:

nvidia-settings -a InitialPixmapPlacement=2 -a GlyphCache=1 -----------------------------
correct nvidia settings
# nvidia-settings: X configuration file generated by nvidia-settings
# nvidia-settings: version 1.0 (buildd@vernadsky) Tue Mar 4 20:24:34 UTC 2008

# xorg.conf (X.Org X Window System server configuration file)
# This file was generated by dexconf, the Debian X Configuration tool, using
# values from the debconf database.
# Edit this file with caution, and see the xorg.conf manual page.
# (Type "man xorg.conf" at the shell prompt.)
# This file is automatically updated on xserver-xorg package upgrades *only*
# if it has not been modified since the last upgrade of the xserver-xorg
# package.
# If you have edited this file but would like it to be automatically updated
# again, run the following command:
# sudo dpkg-reconfigure -phigh xserver-xorg

Section "ServerLayout"
Identifier "Default Layout"
Screen 0 "Screen0" 0 0

Section "Module"
Load "glx"

Section "ServerFlags"
Option "Xinerama" "0"

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "Generic Keyboard"
Driver "kbd"
Option "XkbRules" "xorg"
Option "XkbModel" "pc105"
Option "XkbLayout" "gb"

Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "Configured Mouse"
Driver "mouse"
Option "CorePointer"

Section "Monitor"
Identifier "Configured Monitor"

Section "Monitor"
Identifier "Monitor0"
VendorName "Unknown"
ModelName "Philips PHL 20PF5320"
HorizSync 31.0 - 60.0
VertRefresh 47.0 - 75.0

Section "Device"
Identifier "Configured Video Device"
Driver "nvidia"
Option "NoLogo" "True"

Section "Device"
Identifier "Videocard0"
Driver "nvidia"
VendorName "NVIDIA Corporation"
BoardName "GeForce 7900 GS"

Section "Screen"
Identifier "Default Screen"
Device "Configured Video Device"
Monitor "Configured Monitor"
DefaultDepth 24

Section "Screen"
Identifier "Screen0"
Device "Videocard0"
Monitor "Monitor0"
DefaultDepth 24
Option "TwinView" "0"
Option "metamodes" "DFP: 1024x768_70 +0+0; DFP: 1024x768 +0+0"
Black screen on 10.0

So after a lot of problems upgrading to 10.04, eventually a clean install. First in 8.04, 9.10 and now as said in 10.04 for the second time, problems with the screen. It starts, gets a bit grey, then I see the GNU without touching keys, I choose the one at the top, Get's black again, Then some orange shows very short and I can log in, but not in any interface. Just as root in terminal. That's as far as I get.
The machine:
PC1(wired)10.04; ASRock N68; Dual AMD 64 Athlon(tm) II X2 240; RAM: 2048 DDR2; ATA Disk WD320Gb; Atheros AR5001X + W'less Sitecom 300N ; VGA compatible controller C61 [Nvidia GeForce 7025 / nForce 630a]; screen Acer 19'' V193HQ 1280x720 max.
Tried this:
Installed this one
Worked great for 2 weeks and is now gone with the wind. Nowhere to find. Strange.....
This hereunder is what's on it, I can imagine it will conflict, but what can I get rid of and what not. And how, I can only work from USB-Stick.
ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ apt-cache search nvidia
dmraid - Device-Mapper Software RAID support tool
jockey-common - user interface and desktop integration for driver management
jockey-gtk - GNOME user interface and desktop integration for driver management
jockey-kde - KDE user interface and desktop integration for driver management
libvdpau-dev - Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix (development files)
libvdpau-doc - Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix (documentation)
libvdpau1 - Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix (libraries)
nvidia-173-modaliases - Modaliases for the NVIDIA binary X.Org driver
nvidia-185-modaliases - Transitional package for nvidia-185-modaliases
nvidia-96-modaliases - Modaliases for the NVIDIA binary X.Org driver
nvidia-common - Find obsolete NVIDIA drivers
nvidia-current-modaliases - Modaliases for the NVIDIA binary X.Org driver
nvidia-settings - Tool of configuring the NVIDIA graphics driver
smartdimmer - Change LCD brightness on Geforce cards
xserver-xorg-video-nouveau - X.Org X server -- Nouveau display driver (experimental)
xserver-xorg-video-nv - X.Org X server -- NV display driver
nvidia-173 - NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library
nvidia-173-dev - NVIDIA binary Xorg driver development files
nvidia-173-kernel-source - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-173-kernel-source
nvidia-180-kernel-source - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-185-kernel-source
nvidia-180-libvdpau - Transitional package for nvidia-185-libvdpau
nvidia-180-libvdpau-dev - Transitional package for nvidia-185-libvdpau-dev
nvidia-185-kernel-source - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-185-kernel-source
nvidia-185-libvdpau - Transitional package for nvidia-185-libvdpau
nvidia-185-libvdpau-dev - Transitional package for nvidia-185-libvdpau-dev
nvidia-96 - NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library
nvidia-96-dev - NVIDIA binary Xorg driver development files
nvidia-96-kernel-source - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-96-kernel-source
nvidia-current - NVIDIA binary Xorg driver, kernel module and VDPAU library
nvidia-current-dev - NVIDIA binary Xorg driver development files
nvidia-glx-173 - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-173
nvidia-glx-173-dev - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-173-dev
nvidia-glx-180 - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-185
nvidia-glx-180-dev - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-185-dev
nvidia-glx-185 - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-185
nvidia-glx-185-dev - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-185-dev
nvidia-glx-96 - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-96
nvidia-glx-96-dev - Transitional package for nvidia-glx-96-dev
nvidia-kernel-common - NVIDIA binary kernel module common files
ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ apt-cache search ppa
apparmor - User-space parser utility for AppArmor
apparmor-docs - Documentation for AppArmor
apparmor-utils - Utilities for controlling AppArmor
lbdb - The little brother's database for the mutt mail reader
libapparmor-dev - AppArmor development libraries and header files
libapparmor-perl - AppArmor library Perl bindings
libapparmor1 - changehat AppArmor library
libneon27 - An HTTP and WebDAV client library
libneon27-gnutls - An HTTP and WebDAV client library (GnuTLS enabled)
libxom-java - A new XML object model for Java
libxom-java-doc - Documentation for the libxom-java package
palo - Linux boot loader for parisc/hppa
pnm2ppa - PPM to PPA converter
texlive-science - TeX Live: Typesetting for natural and computer sciences
type-handling - dpkg architecture generation script
ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ apt-cache search vesa
grub-pc - GRand Unified Bootloader, version 2 (PC/BIOS version)
libxext-dev - X11 miscellaneous extensions library (development headers)
libxext6 - X11 miscellaneous extension library
libxext6-dbg - X11 miscellaneous extensions library (debug package)
xserver-xorg-video-vesa - X.Org X server -- VESA display driver
ubuntu@ubuntu:~$ apt-cache search nouveau
libdrm-nouveau1 - Userspace interface to nouveau-specific kernel DRM services -- runtime
libdrm-nouveau1-dbg - Userspace interface to nouveau-specific kernel DRM services -- debugging symbols
xserver-xorg-video-nouveau - X.Org X server -- Nouveau display driver (experimental)
This is the Xorg.conf on the moment:
Section "Screen"
   Identifier "Acer HQ19"
   DefaultDepth 24

Section "Module"
   Load "glx"

Section "Device"
   Identifier "Default Device"
   Driver "nvidia"
   Option "NoLogo" "True"

#default screen I removed and put in the screen name , but doesn' t work.
Till a few days ago I worked with this xorg.conf:
Section "Screen"
   Identifier "Default Screen"
   DefaultDepth 24
Section "Module"
   Load "glx"
Section "Device"
   Identifier "Default Device"
   Driver "nvidia"
   Option "NoLogo" "True"
Last time I changed the xorg.conf with the failsafe file and it worked again, now it does not.
I now also edited the kernel, removing quite splash with " nomodeset" . Nothing!
Kernel is the newest as well, ends at .24
The story:
Two days ago, in the evening i just normal stopped, and in the morning it didn' t do anything anymore. The recovery mode even does not work. Everything I did last times, I did it all again and more, nothing works, The grub is the newest, 1Ubuntu7
There are a few weird things I find:
    * The Nvidia seems to been gone. only the common-directory was there.
    * The nvidia was gone and Nouveau is back! I did not and do not understand .....
Now using a Live USB, I can back into it, but:
    * I have removed video Nouveau
    * The Veza is off
    * Current Nvidia installled
    *But once I reboot everything is as it was earlier on. All changes DISiAPPEARED again.
Then I looked at the grub, which looks ok to me. I have the 1.98 1Ubuntu7
    * The terminal does NOT operate from the USB stick yhe command: mount/dev/sda1/mnt sudo "not
    * Similarly, then, sudo grub-install / dev / sda - root-directory = / mnt "says" unknown command "
What happens STARTING UP: : start, pause, image fade equally, without keys, I see then Grub here and can I get a kernel mode (the latest), and sometimes even heavy images, then flash an orange ubuntu color along and then stops the lot, flashing in root (in black) Evil, BUT so I can login. But not IN a nice interface. Any way. Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for the help Another important issue may be, someone suggested doing an update, to remove kernel, which is no more also, Can that be the problem? Even through the live stick or through these kernel booted right? To be sure, the stick is made on Sept. 14.

No comments: