[nSLUG] An unusual Ubuntu logon problem
frank.geitzler at ns.sympatico.ca
Thu Aug 20 10:40:52 ADT 2015
My apologies for taking so long to reply to your messages, John and
Norm. I have been trying to make the best use of the weather by
staining both sides of a picket fence (about 160 feet x 2) and been too
tired to properly document my efforts in resolving this logon problem.
The problem is further compounded by my limited Linux experience,
although I had almost 30 years of mainframe computer programming and
support, and DOS, Windows and OS/2 experience before I retired a number
of years ago.
Norm, I don't remember being able to find the jill/.xsession-error log
-where would I look for it?
I looked for 'inittab', as suggested in an earlier message, but when I
entered 'where inittab', the only result was
'usr/share/man/man5/inittab.5.gz'. That didn't appear to be anything I
John, I authorized the 'jill' user id, and then entered 'sudo telinit
5', expecting to see the Ubuntu desktop. Nothing appeared to happen,
I then did 'sudo shutdown -r now', and when the Ubuntu logon screen
appeared, attempted to logon as 'jill', hoping to obtain the Ubuntu
desktop. Instead, I was returned to the Ubuntu logon screen, with no
apparent error message. I repeated the process several times, with the
same result (why should I have expected anything else?). There may be
an error log somewhere which I could examine, but I don't really know
where to find the log, or what to look for in it.
This is not a high priority -the 'guest' userid does what I need this
old laptop for, but it just doesn't retain any 'favorites' in Foxfire,
so it is necessary to key in a search address every time -a minor
I just would like to determine what might have caused the problem, if
possible, so I could prevent it from happening again.
Thanks for your help,
On Sun, 2015-08-16 at 15:14 -0700, John Weintraub wrote:
> Your Jill account ended up in single-user mode. You can try a couple
> of things, they should work. The first is to type 'telinit 5' (no
> quotes) or 'sudo telinit 5', which should put you back into
> graphical/multi-user mode (normal operations for most Ubuntu systems
> running a GUI like gdm, kdm, or xdm, or lightdm).
> Then log out, once in graphical user mode. The system should retain
> the GUI (runlevel 5) in its configuration. To be sure, once you logged
> back in, do a terminal-based shutdown and restart ('sudo shutdown -r
> now'). You should find Jill back at runlevel 5.
> The other thing to try is typing 'sudo startx' at the single-user
> terminal prompt. The reason for the 'sudo' is, it will launch runlevel
> 5 in admin/root mode, so you can make edits to whatever files you
> need, such as inittab, which is where the runlevel is recorded. Then
> log out, once in graphical user mode. The system should retain the GUI
> (runlevel 5) in its configuration. To be sure, once you logged back
> in, do a terminal-based shutdown and restart ('sudo shutdown -r now').
> You should find Jill back at runlevel 5.
> Let us know if either of these worked.
> Cheers, JJW
> On Sun, Aug 16, 2015 at 11:54 AM, Norm <anamelech at gmail.com> wrote:
> You might find something in the. ~jill/.xsession-error log.
> I've only had this happen when home directory permissions get
> changed, or using an 'obscure' shell
> From: Frank Geitzler
> Sent: Sunday, August 16, 2015 15:39
> To: nslug at nslug.ns.ca
> Reply To: Nova Scotia Linux User Group
> Subject: [nSLUG] An unusual Ubuntu logon problem
> I have an old laptop running Ubuntu 12.04. I have several
> logon IDs on it, one with Administrator authority (call it
> 'Jack'), and one without Administrator authority (call it
> 'Jill'). When I show the file system, and open the 'home'
> folder, there are two folders inside the 'home' folder: 'Jack'
> and 'Jill'.
> When the computer is powered on, the Ubuntu 12.04 logon
> selection screen appears, prompting for a choice of user and
> When the 'Jack' user logs on, the normal Ubuntu 12.04 desktop
> appears, and the computer behaves normally. However, when the
> 'Jill' user logs on, a full-screen terminal session appears,
> and it is necessary to click the mouse on the terminal session
> in order to be able to enter terminal commands. Entering the
> 'exit' command logs off the 'Jill' user, causing the Ubuntu
> 12.04 logon selection screen to re-appear, prompting for a
> choice of user and password.
> I have no idea what could have caused the change in the 'Jill'
> ID, which previously had a normal desktop. I could just
> delete the user and re-create it (no significant files would
> be lost), and will probably do so in a few days, but it would
> be interesting to find out if there is some other way to
> determine what might have happened, and perhaps recover the
> use of the ID in a less drastic way.
> Does anyone have any suggestions?
> nSLUG mailing list
> nSLUG at nslug.ns.ca
> John Weintraub
> #333-7451 Moffatt Rd.
> Richmond BC Canada
> V6Y 3W3
> johnweintraub at gmail.com
> nSLUG mailing list
> nSLUG at nslug.ns.ca
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