Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

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Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Sat Feb 21, 2009 10:40 am

Ok this is really strange, I have no idea how this happened.

I have completely lost control over my desktop, there are no icons. I used to have my home folder and two mounted harddrives show up, but now there is nothing. I have enabled them in MintDesktop but they are not showing up. The other thing is that the desktop is completely locked, I can't right click or anything. If I try to access my desktop from nautilus, it's also empty, if I create a folder on the desktop from within nautilus it doesn't show (only in nautilus).

I tried rebooting but it didn't solve the problem. Hopefully I haven't been hacked?
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby viking777 on Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:05 am

Perhaps gnome desktop manager has stopped running?

Open a terminal and type

Code: Select all
gdm


See if that does anything, although the fact that you have a system tray and taskbar running leads me to think that might not work. Still no harm in trying.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby garda on Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:08 am

Last time I had this type of error, it was because I had clicked on 'Remember Currently Running Applications' button in Sessions Properties before. If you happen to have done the same thing, do not ever do that again. Now have you tried entering this in the Terminal:
Code: Select all
nautilus &
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:50 am

Thanks guys here's the output of the terminal stuff you gave:
Code: Select all
kasper@kasper-desktop ~ $ nautilus &
[1] 8437
kasper@kasper-desktop ~ $ gdm
gdm[8444]: WARNING: GDM file gdm-daemon-config.c: line 2033 (): Cannot run seteuid to 0: Operation not permitted
GDM file gdm-daemon-config.c: line 2033 (): Cannot run seteuid to 0: Operation not permitted
[1]+  Done                    nautilus
kasper@kasper-desktop ~ $ sudo gdm
[sudo] password for kasper:
gdm[8445]: WARNING: GDM already running. Aborting!
GDM already running. Aborting!
kasper@kasper-desktop ~ $

It didn't seem to dfo anything. Where do I find the session properties?
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby proxima_centauri on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 pm

MintMenu-> Preferences -> Sessions
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:09 pm

proxima_centauri wrote:MintMenu-> Preferences -> Sessions

Thanks, just checked and it is not selected.

Any idea what it could be?
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby proxima_centauri on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:26 pm

Is show_desktop checked under gconf-editor -> apps -> nautilus -> preferences??
If it's checked try rechecking it again - maybe run
Code: Select all
killall nautilus
in terminal afterwards
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:35 pm

proxima_centauri wrote:Is show_desktop checked under gconf-editor -> apps -> nautilus -> preferences??
If it's checked try rechecking it again - maybe run
Code: Select all
killall nautilus
in terminal afterwards

Yea it was checked, tried rechecking and running:
Code: Select all
kasper@kasper-desktop ~ $ killall nautilus
nautilus: no process killed
kasper@kasper-desktop ~ $


No change
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby garda on Sat Feb 21, 2009 1:49 pm

This is getting weirder. Sometimes you have to log out and log back in for the changes to take effect. So what I suggest you do now is open up gconf-editor again, uncheck the 'show_desktop' option, log out and log back in, put check mark on the option again, then log out and log back in.

I know this does not sound pretty, but I have dug through several Nautilus-related bugs at BugZilla and have found that some of them can be sorted out by playing with relevant options in gconf-editor then logging out and back in -- losing desktop icons as well as losing the ability to right-click on the desktop for no apparent reason are among them.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Sat Feb 21, 2009 2:27 pm

garda wrote:This is getting weirder. Sometimes you have to log out and log back in for the changes to take effect. So what I suggest you do now is open up gconf-editor again, uncheck the 'show_desktop' option, log out and log back in, put check mark on the option again, then log out and log back in.

I know this does not sound pretty, but I have dug through several Nautilus-related bugs at BugZilla and have found that some of them can be sorted out by playing with relevant options in gconf-editor then logging out and back in -- losing desktop icons as well as losing the ability to right-click on the desktop for no apparent reason are among them.

I did what you suggested and actually rebooted each time, and it actually worked.

Thanks a lot
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:07 am

Unfortunately the issue returned. I'm going to go through the same process, but it's just a little irritating that it keeps happening. Any idea on how I could prevent it?
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby garda on Sun Feb 22, 2009 9:45 am

Did you ever install any desktop-related or eye candy utilities such as wallpaper switcher, compiz multiple-wallpaper plugin or anything at all? If so, try to remove (purge) them. If not, make sure there are no multiple instances of Nautilus running:
1. Close all open windows and applications.
2. Go to Control Center > Sessions > Current Session tab.

See my Session Properties/Preferences screenshot for reference.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Wed Feb 25, 2009 1:37 pm

garda wrote:Did you ever install any desktop-related or eye candy utilities such as wallpaper switcher, compiz multiple-wallpaper plugin or anything at all? If so, try to remove (purge) them. If not, make sure there are no multiple instances of Nautilus running:
1. Close all open windows and applications.
2. Go to Control Center > Sessions > Current Session tab.

See my Session Properties/Preferences screenshot for reference.

No, I haven't installed anything like that. It's strange because I don't have a 'Current Session Tab'
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby kasperbs on Thu Feb 26, 2009 10:26 am

Apparently now this happens every time I boot. It's pretty irritating having to log in three times each session, would appreciate if anyone can jump in with ideas.

Thanks.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby garda on Fri Feb 27, 2009 8:17 am

I have reached the end of my wits now, therefore all I can recommend is make a new user profile then transfer your files (except the settings) from your current home directory to the new one. You will probably have to fiddle with permissions settings on the files and directories, but that is a matter to be discussed later.

Another that is worth trying beforehand is to turn of visual effects (i.e. turn of Compiz) and see if the problem persists.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby madwoollything on Sat Feb 28, 2009 4:04 am

I'm having exactly the same issues with my Mint 6 installation.

I've rebuilt my installation and the same issue returned almost immediately.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby madwoollything on Sat Feb 28, 2009 6:46 am

madwoollything wrote:I'm having exactly the same issues with my Mint 6 installation.

I've rebuilt my installation and the same issue returned almost immediately.


On further investigation I used gconf-editor (type 'gconf-editor' into a terminal to launch the application) then navigate to /apps/nautilus/preferences/show_desktop. Remove the tick from the check box and reboot. Since then I appear to have everything working again as normal .... desktop and nautilus! :D

Hope this helps others.
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Re: Lost Control Over My Desktop. Literally

Postby nairb1 on Sat Feb 28, 2009 8:39 am

Hi.
I had the same problem, and touch wood all ok now.
I did the following - removed in synaptic package manager all nautilus.
Then powered down
powered up and reinstalled those nautilus programs I thought were needed.
Powered down and up. I have not had this problem since.
let me know how you get on
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