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Thread: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

  1. #1
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    First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    I'm a software developer and decided to make the jump to Ubuntu. I picked up a used Acer Aspire 5750-9851 (see the specs below).

    I installed Ubuntu 12.10 64-bit from a flash drive with no issues. I used the system for a couple of hours with no issues. During that time I checked the "Software Update" app and I applied all the recommended updates (220+ megs worth).

    At the end of that 2 hours the system locked up. I rebooted and it came back up and said a problem was detected. I filed an error report (or at least tried to). From here everything has gone down hill. For a few boots afterwards it would keep saying a problem was detected (I believe it was xorg crashing). Then during a boot it would give me a message about being in "low graphics mode" and then lock up. Now it just boots up to a black screen that says "[OK]" at the very top and locks up (the mouse moves but nothing else does anything).

    What's really odd is that sometimes it boots to the grub menu and sometimes it doesn't. Why would it do that? I brought it up in recovery mode and ran fsck and "package repair". Neither one finds any problems. I created a flash drive with memtest+ on it and let it run over night. No memory errors were found.

    Any other suggestions? I think my next move is going to be to re-install fresh and not apply the recommended updates for a while and see if it will stay up for a few days.


    Acer 5750-9851 specs
    Processor: i7-2630QM
    Memory: 16GB
    Hard Drive: Curcial 512GB SSD
    Graphics: Intel HD
    Chipset: Mobil Intel HM65 Express


    Thanks!
    Doc
    Last edited by DetroitDoc; April 16th, 2013 at 02:34 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    Quote Originally Posted by DetroitDoc View Post
    I think my next move is going to be to re-install fresh and not apply the recommended updates for a while and see if it will stay up for a few days.
    That sounds sensible.

    It sounds like you've got graphics driver problems. That's a bit unusual with Intel graphics, normally they Just Work. It's entirely possible the problem is hardware, especially if you got it second hand. A fresh install should help isolate that, as would running from the Live disk or a USB.

  3. #3
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    If you choose the nuclear option of a fresh install, which is quick and effective, then do not tick the box to install third party software. That will install a proprietary video driver. I have experienced the issues you are having because of having a proprietary video driver installed. I have found the default open source Nouveau driver to be sufficient.

    Recovery Mode>Resume will sometimes get us to a desktop without the loading of the video drivers. From there you can activate the Nouveau driver. That is if you can get to a desktop. If it is only the wallpaper, then right click the desktop and select Change wallpapers. That will open System Settings and in Software Sources>Additional Drivers tab you can experiment with other video drivers. Remember, most of those drivers are proprietary software. The Ubuntu developers cannot access the code. They cannot fix issues. They can only pass the bug reports upstream to proprietor of the driver.


    Is there a discrete video adapter was well as the Intel HD adapter? You might be interested in this

    http://www.omgubuntu.co.uk/2013/04/i...-linux-drivers

    Regards.
    Last edited by grahammechanical; April 15th, 2013 at 02:23 PM.
    It is a machine. It is more stupid than we are. It will not stop us from doing stupid things.
    Ubuntu user #33,200. Linux user #530,530


  4. #4
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    Welcome to the forums.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paqman View Post
    It sounds like you've got graphics driver problems. That's a bit unusual with Intel graphics, normally they Just Work. It's entirely possible the problem is hardware, especially if you got it second hand. A fresh install should help isolate that, as would running from the Live disk or a USB.
    +1. Does sound hardware-ish as the problem comes and goes. Try running from the LiveCD and see if you get any problems there.

    PS: Just a tip; you will have better luck getting help if you use thread titles that describe and directly relate to your issue rather than generic ones.
    Last edited by Bucky Ball; April 15th, 2013 at 02:14 PM.

  5. #5
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    Quote Originally Posted by grahammechanical View Post
    If you choose the nuclear option of a fresh install, which is quick and effective, then do not tick the box to install third party software. That will install a proprietary video driver. I have experienced the issues you are having because of having a proprietary video driver installed. I have found the default open source Nouveau driver to be sufficient.
    Dude, he has Intel graphics, not Nvidia so wouldn't be using nouveau. The Intel drivers are in the kernel, no need to install or activate anything.

  6. #6
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    Thanks for all the replies guys!

    This model Acer Aspire only has Intel graphics.

    The laptop was running windows successfully prior to me installing Ubuntu. I did replace the drive with an SSD and Ubuntu is the only thing installed on it.

    I'll try the following things when I get home tonight I'll try reinstalling without any proprietary packages and I won't apply all the updates and see if it stays up for a couple days. If it does I'll apply the updates and see if that's what broke it.

  7. #7
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    You could also consider giving 13.04 a shot.
    It's in beta now and pretty stable, it'll be released as the new stable pretty soon.

    If it's locking up / giving graphic problems I suppose this could be kernel related and 13.04 runs a much newer kernel then 12.10.

  8. #8
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    Thanks again guys. If I have no luck with the reinstall I might try 13.04 or even 12.04.

    Any thoughts to why the grub screen would pop up about 50% of the time on reboot? That seems really odd to me as well. This is the only O/S on the system so it shouldn't be popping up at all right? When I first did the install I rebooted several times and it did not come up.

    Thanks!
    Doc

  9. #9
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    As a new comer I would try 12.04 LTS. Definitely more stable at this point and better place to start (also is long-term support release so is supported until 2017). Although 13.04 has a newer kernel doesn't necessarily mean it will fix this problem. Strange though as Intel graphics should be working out-of-the-box.

    When the grub screen comes up and you choose Ubuntu does it then run normally?

  10. #10
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    Re: First try at Ubuntu - rough going

    Quote Originally Posted by Bucky Ball View Post
    When the grub screen comes up and you choose Ubuntu does it then run normally?
    About half the time the systems boots right to the black screen with "[OK]" at the top. The other half of the time it shows the grub screen first. If I choose to boot Ubuntu it then boots to the same black screen with "[OK]" at the top.

    Once in a while I can get it to boot up to the "low graphics mode" message but it locks up there.

    Once in a great, great while it will boot up to the login screen, let me login and then report that xorg crashed.

    Thanks!
    Doc

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