Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

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Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by deleted » Mon Jul 14, 2014 10:00 am

I recently did a fresh installed of Mint 17, KDE on an HP Pavilion a6700y http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/docu ... c=en&lc=en
Using an NVIDIA GeForce 600 series card. (GeForce GT 640)

I initially just accepted the out-of-the-box defaults to see how things work out.
I initially used no proprietary drivers.
I have 4 users on this installation.

The first thing that I found was that using user switch, with mdm consistently resulted in a black screen, with no apparent way to recover (alt+f7, f8... helped sometimes).
So then after reading the release notes, I installed the 304 NVIDIA driver. Not much difference.
I then replaced mdm with kdm and things seemed much more stable, but occasionally the users are left with a blank screen and mouse cursor when they switch.
I tried installing the latest kernel, but that just created a kernel panic.
Thank goodness I could use the intel onboard video to uninstall that kernel.
It also gave me a chance to notice the black screen with the intel video driver.

So what happened between Mint 14 KDE and Mint 17 KDE? 14 was rock solid. I realize that say, NVIDIA, Ubuntu/Debian pieces, and KDE are out of Mint's control, but I'm just trying to figure out
which pieces I need to concentrate on to increase stability (ie, stop blank screens and kernel panics).

I have a somewhat stable PC now. We'll see if subsequent updates help stabilize it.
Thanks.
-Hinto

versican
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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by versican » Fri Jul 18, 2014 12:44 pm

See if http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=168108 helps.

I had to modify my GRUB file by uncommenting out two things. The above forum helped me, though I needed to use a different command to open the Grub. I used:
gksu gedit /etc/default/grub

Remove the comment (#) from two lines then save it:
GRUB_TERMINAL=console
Grub_GFXMODE=640x480

Run the update:
sudo update-grub

Then my control alt f1 worked -- takes me to tty1 prompt. control alt f8 now takes me back.

But the above forum had additional steps -- I didn't need the additional steps. And the above forum used a different command to get the grub edited (sudo pluma..) but that command didn't work for me (again I used the gksu gedit command).

I'm a total novice. So perhaps this won't help. Good luck.

deleted

Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by deleted » Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:14 am

Thanks.
I'll give it a try.
-Hinto

gav.
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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by gav. » Tue Sep 09, 2014 10:53 pm

The first thing that I found was that using user switch, with mdm consistently resulted in a black screen, with no apparent way to recover
Unfortunately user switching is broken in mdm (Mint 16 and 17), which makes a multi-user (shared) desktop system with Mint completely unusable:
https://github.com/linuxmint/mdm/issues/90

Update:

As a workaround to this problem, lightdm may be used as an mdm replacement.

Note: mdm needs to be removed for user switching to work, otherwise you just get a message that "MDM (MDM Display Manager) is not running".

Code: Select all

apt-get install lightdm lightdm-gtk-greeter
apt-get purge mdm
gav.

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myrkat
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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by myrkat » Tue Sep 23, 2014 6:27 pm

Not to sway the conversation away from the OP's user-switching mdm woes, but I've also noticed that coming out of a "SLEEP" (suspend to RAM) that occasionally I get just a desktop and movable mouse cursor, but no clicks or CTRL+ALT+F1 works. My conky script and the system clock are not updating, so it looks frozen, but yet the mouse moves freely.

The reason I bring this up here is, could it also be an mdm problem, coming out of SLEEP? I will install lightdm and purge mdm and see.
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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by deleted » Wed Sep 24, 2014 9:09 am

I *think* it's also coupled with kde's "switch users" being broken.
I've seen various posts with various distros on the we.
-Hinto

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by hellwoodfire » Sun Sep 28, 2014 7:29 pm

I have the exact same problem:
-Mint Qiana Cinnamon "V2" 64bit.
-Asus GTX750-Ti
-Change User lead to a black screen (and if I wait until about 1 minutes it come back to my session with an error message "Impossible to start a new display").
-Cannot use mint properly in a familly (multi-user) configuration.

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by hellwoodfire » Sat Mar 14, 2015 3:36 pm

Still not solved. Not just KDE, same problem with Cinnamon and MATE (same mdm ?).
Last edited by hellwoodfire on Sat Mar 14, 2015 4:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by hellwoodfire » Sat Mar 14, 2015 4:09 pm

Does this bug appear only with some nvidia models (I have the problem with a GTX 750 Ti) ?
Is there any nvidia cards that does not have this problem ?

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by hellwoodfire » Tue Aug 25, 2015 1:06 am

Still not solved in 17.2.

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by wheeledgoat » Tue Aug 25, 2015 1:28 pm

i've had a gtx 760 in my linux box, and have been suffering through a myriad of freezeups and unpleasantries, holding out for that day when that little version description prophecy "improved compatibility / better support with nvidia cards / drivers" came true.

after I had 17.2 freeze up, I gave up. just this past weekend I threw the 760 into the one windows box I have left (running 10 nicely, btw), rendering the "Intel HD Graphics 2000" half of that i3 processor moot, and dropped $95 on a r7 250. That seems to be getting along quite nicely with 17.2 kde.

"If you don't make mistakes, you're not working on hard enough problems. And that's a big mistake."
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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by reppa » Sun Sep 06, 2015 1:04 pm

I have nvidia GTX460 and the problem started at most 6 months ago. When I switch user and enter password I get forwarded to black screen with underscore blinking. I could use GDM, but then switch user button does not work from the mint (start) menu. I could send some logs if anyone is interested :)

Is this correct place to report? There are other issues too like when screensaver goes on, it asks for password for passwordless user and I cant log in - wrong password message, etc...

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by wheeledgoat » Tue Sep 08, 2015 2:35 pm

reppa wrote:...when screensaver goes on, it asks for password for passwordless user and I cant log in - wrong password message, etc...
in my [limited] experience, i've had the exact same thing happen. To prevent it, I assign a password to all accounts but then add the users to the nopasswd group. Search the forums for managing the nopasswd group for your particular version & DE (17.2 KDE has made this extremely easy, but previous versions required a few steps).

you can try and de-select the checkbox under the screensaver (power management) to "require password on resume" but in my experience this can be flaky and doesn't always work. note, too, this is a user-specific setting. just because you change it as an admin won't change it for all users.

"If you don't make mistakes, you're not working on hard enough problems. And that's a big mistake."
-Frank Wilczek

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Re: Mint 17 + mdm + user switch + nvidia = Black Screen

Post by hellwoodfire » Mon Dec 14, 2015 12:59 am

Problem was solved for me when I added "nomodeset" in my grub configuration.
(I am currently on Mint 17.3 Cinnamon with kernel version 4.2.0-19, so I'm not sure if it's only the "nomodeset" that fixed the problem or also the combination of my system version. I mean: because I also upgraded the kernel to 4.2.0-19... and I had the problem before upgrading to 17.3 and before upgrading the kernel.
But for sure when I remove the "nomodeset" setting in grub, the problem reappear again.

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