Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

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Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby neilp on Sat Nov 28, 2009 6:29 pm

I'm trying to boot with the live discs I downloaded today (I tried both the CD and DVD), and the desktop just won't load: it gets to the end of the boot-up scripts, but the screen just goes black. Every 5 seconds or so, the screen quickly flashes and I can make out a console window, but it goes back to black.

It's on a system that has been running Gloria for a while...I decided this weekend to upgrade to the RC, but today I saw the final version was released, so I downloaded that and am trying to upgrade (via a clean install). I know the discs I burned are working ok...I'm typing this from a laptop booted with the livecd, and it's perfectly fine.

The specs on the system that isn't working are OK: 2 GB RAM, Sempron 3100+, GeForce 6600 (...and, like I said, it's been running Gloria almost since the time that was released).

Any ideas? I want to upgrade!!!!!!! :?
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby BasicGreatGuy on Sat Nov 28, 2009 7:40 pm

Have you tried burning the ISO at the slowest speed allowed on your computer, and or possibly changing the media brand? It can make a difference at times. I have run into that problem before, when my computer has burned faster than it really should have. Hopefully, it is as simple as that.
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby neilp on Sat Nov 28, 2009 11:11 pm

I tried burning another brand of disk, at min speed (8x), and the system did the same thing. (..though, I've never had an issue booting with any type of disk, always at max speed.)

For giggles, I burned a Ubuntu 9.10 disk, and it did the exact same thing. So I'll hit the general Ubuntu forums to see if I can get any further ideas.
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby Jules Delespy on Mon Nov 30, 2009 6:36 pm

I notice you have a Geforce card. Is it PCI? Trouble similar to what you describe started with Mint or Ubuntu and geforce cards when Ubuntu went from 8 to 9.

There may be a solution. See viewtopic.php?f=59&t=31882&p=211442#p211442.
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby awong on Tue Dec 01, 2009 12:34 am

Any solutions for AGP Geforce cards? I've been poking around the ubuntu forums:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1305459

I even tried changing my AGP bios settings to no avail... I still can't get the desktop started on the LiveCD. :(

I'm very happy with Mint 7 on this system and will most likely stick with it since it works very well.

My system specs:
Dell XPS Pentium 4 3.0 GHz [hyperthreaded]
2.0 GB RAM
AGP nvidia Geforce 7600GS
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby Jules Delespy on Tue Dec 01, 2009 1:02 pm

Possible solutions here:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1328043

and here:
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1144043

I intend to try them later this week.
I have tried installing either Ubuntu or Mint on a 6 year old Pentium 4 entry-level Dell (Dimension 2350). All Ubuntu or Mint version up to the most current can boot from CD without problem as long as only the onboard video is available. A PCI GeForce 6200 card has been added to the system, and when enabled in BIOS, only versions up to Ubuntu 8.10 can boot. Later versions are thrown into a kernel panic early into the boot sequence.

There are two ways to disable the PCI card on this computer: physically pull it out, or force onboard graphics in the BIOS. The graphics options in the BIOS are 'onboard' and 'Auto'. There is no 'PCI only' option.
In the first thread above, the user Benmorrisson reports that installing Ubuntu 9.04 with the PCI card out, shutting down, then putting in the card and restarting just worked. There are other reports however of people adding a PCI graphics cards to a working Ubuntu system breaking it.
Maybe the additional step of blacklisting the onboard graphics described in the second thread must be added in some cases...
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby brjoon1021 on Tue Dec 01, 2009 2:56 pm

My login screen on the installation CD flashes like a strobe light. I have no onboard video, I have an AGP Nvidia 6600GT. I burned this disk because the same thing was happening with ubuntu 9.10 after the last synaptic upgrade this morning.
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby Sperry on Tue Dec 01, 2009 4:00 pm

I have almost the same problem as brjoon1021 except that my login screen flashes when I am not using the LiveCD. I installed the LinuxMint 8 RC-1 Main version with no problems, but when I try to upgrade to the final version my login screen just flashes. I have NVidia onboard video. Thanks.
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby simplicissimus on Wed Dec 02, 2009 4:50 pm

Hello!

brjoon1021 wrote:My login screen on the installation CD flashes like a strobe light. I have no onboard video, I have an AGP Nvidia 6600GT. I burned this disk because the same thing was happening with ubuntu 9.10 after the last synaptic upgrade this morning.


The same problem here, I have an AGP Nvidia 6600GT too (no PCI).
Muchos saludos | Mit liebem Gruß | With kind regards
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby Jules Delespy on Thu Dec 03, 2009 4:38 pm

After some research, it turns out that similar problems are all over linux forums. Here is a list of links where solutions have been proposed.
The issue is installation on machines where 1) graphics processing is integrated into the motherboard and 2) a graphics card has been added as an upgrade. The cards are often Nvidia, but not necessarily. Often, the integrated graphics cannot be fully disabled in BIOS, or things go wrong even when the integrated graphics are disabled in BIOS.
This configuration can lead to a variety of problems, with the most severe being kernel panic at boot time, which results in the inability to either try out the liveCD, or install Ubuntu (or Mint) at all.
Since issues related to the combination of integrated graphics+graphics card show up in many forum categories, I collected a list of references where a solution was proposed. The first of those references comes from Alberto Milone (tseliot in Ubuntu forums), the author of EnvyNG, among other qualifications. It seems reasonable to think that it is the best current solution.
The problem has existed in all versions of Ubuntu since at least version 6, and all the way to 27 November 2009 daily releases of 10.4. Strangely, it is possible that 8.04 was not affected. I have checked that the live CD of 8.04 indeed boots properly on affected machines, while none of the other versions do. As illustrated by the following links, other distros are affected as well. As a practical matter, this is very likely to stop many users from installing Linux on entry-level namebrand computers, which seems a shame.

here are the links. The same solution (blacklisting Intel AGP) is offered in many of them.

http://www.albertomilone.com/nvidia_int ... grated.txt
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1256691
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1144043
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=675497
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1308919
https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+sour ... +bug/55104
http://www.bikechatforums.com/viewtopic.php?p=2356664
http://www.nvnews.net/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=128934
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=196693
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=635943
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=192677
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=496999
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1328043
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1078576
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=295133
http://javadocs.wordpress.com/2008/09/2 ... -gfx-card/
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=207303
http://en.opensuse.org/NVidia_Suspend_HOWTO
http://mepislovers.org/forums/showthread.php?t=6487
http://www.opensubscriber.com/message/s ... 46049.html
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby brjoon1021 on Sat Dec 19, 2009 11:01 am

What a mess. I am the original poster. As a note, the last post said in summary that it had to do with integrated graphics cards with an AGP card installed as well. I don't have any integrated graphics.
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Re: Desktop won't start on Helena LiveCD/DVD

Postby awong on Wed Jan 06, 2010 11:30 pm

Well, here's something rather odd - I never thought that changing my old monitor - a ViewSonic PF790 Color Monitor (CRT) - with a new NEC MultiSync EA231WMi monitor (LCD) would get rid of the flashing, no loading X problem, but it has! :?

Now Helena boots on my old Dell as well... go figure...

My system specs:
Dell XPS Pentium 4 3.0 GHz [hyperthreaded]
2.0 GB RAM
AGP nvidia Geforce 7600GS
new NEC MultiSync EA231WMi LCD monitor
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