I don't usually use a virtual terminal and I don't know what possesed me to go into one, but I did using the standard ctrl-alt-F[1-6]. I looked around and didn't edit anything, I was just exploring. When done, I exited the terminal and was back at the login prompt. I did the normal return trick of ctrl-alt-F7 and was greeted with the text "could not write bytes: pipe broken".
I did a bunch of Google searching and found a suggestion of using ctrl-alt-F8 instead, that gave me a black screen with a blicking cursor in the upper left of the screen. Another suggestion is video drivers, so I made sure I had the latest and greatest since the ones during the install were out of date by one rev. Same thing. The only thing getting me out of the black screen and login prompt was either ctrl-alt-del or sudo reboot. One way out and back to the desktop was to login to a virtual terminal, stop mdm, and then startx. That got me back to the gui, but doing a "who" on the terminal showed me what I expected: my vitual terminal, was still on and the gui was if I had relogged on. This is ungood and I'm sure it isn't the right way to exit a virtual terminal.
Details: kernel: 3.2.0-23-generic gpu: nVidia 9800GT 512M ram CPU: Intel i7 920 Ram: 6G
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~ Mon Nov 05 $ lsb_release -a
No LSB modules are available.
Distributor ID: LinuxMint
Description: Linux Mint 13 Maya
After rebooting like normal into Maya, I did a "who" on the terminal and sure enough there was one user and he was on tty 8 port :0.
Any suggestions? I didn't find any bug reports, but they seem to be hard to find anyway, so I probably missed it if it were there in the list.