View Full Version : [ubuntu] Probs after upgrading from Karmic to Lucid

August 13th, 2010, 04:54 PM
Rather than wait for me to back up her home folder and come and upgrade for her, my mum recently upgraded from Karmic to Lucid herself. Not sure what she did, but shes having real problems. She said she was asked if she wanted to keep her current settings at some point and she said yes. Now when her pc boots the screen is mainly black and white, the processor is at full load, Thunderbird wont work anymore and after 5-10 minutes the screen goes black and the system crashes. Shes got a Pentium 4 about 1.9 Ghz with 2 Gig of RAM. I ve read that Lucid uses an open source drivers for nVidia support, could this be the problem? Shes tried tried pressing F8 or F10 but it doesnt go into the boot menu, just lists a line of about 5 numbers most of them 3s (was going to try to get her to boot from Karmic if it was still in the boot menu, or in safe mode). Any ideas anyone? Thanks

August 13th, 2010, 06:46 PM
First of all: Have you booted with a live CD and rescued the files in /home?

August 13th, 2010, 07:15 PM
No need, no files appear to be lost, I just always back up everything first just in case and she didnt. It just dosent work properly anymore, I m going to have a look at it myself tomorrow, just wanted to see if anyone had any ideas. I get occasional bugs on my AMD 64 bit install, but her Intel 32bit install has always been problem free. I asked her to go into system monitor and see what was running, but other than system monitor, nothing else was.

August 13th, 2010, 07:19 PM
have you tried nomodeset in your grub boot string?

August 13th, 2010, 07:26 PM
Um, no. Heard of Grub and a string but cant remember what they are though. How would I do it?

August 13th, 2010, 07:34 PM
when you boot, press shift and it will display the list of kernels - this is your grub.

press e and then look for the line ending

... quiet splash --

change this to look something like

... nomodeset quiet splash --

CTRL + X to boot

August 13th, 2010, 07:40 PM
Ah, thats why I was telling her to try F8 or 10 to get a list of kernels. I ll try that, thanks.

August 13th, 2010, 09:31 PM
When she presses shift the screen goes blank-black screen, nothing on it, preocessor makes noise but blank screen.

August 13th, 2010, 09:36 PM
pressing shift works for grub2 - if the PC is still using grub-legacy then I think you have to either press Escape or space-bar (cant remember which one).

August 17th, 2010, 02:57 PM
After its booted the processor is running at 90-100%, but in system monitor/processes, there isnt anything running other than system monitor-no signs of anything hanging, sometimes its might be on for 20 mins then crash, other times it ll be on for 2 or 5 mins then crash.

Well, I say crash-the screen either goes black, or half goes black and half black with white flashes, or the screen might be yellow when you login or maybe black and white-but the actual pc is running, you just cant do anything with it.

Something is not right, but if its not in processes, I cant figure out what it is.

August 18th, 2010, 01:10 AM
If the machine is stable enough to run a command, please post the output of

hwinfo --gfx

August 18th, 2010, 01:41 PM
It wasnt installed-I installed it and got:-

10: PCI 02.0: 0300 VGA compatible controller (VGA)
[Created at pci.318]
UDI: /org/freedesktop/Hal/devices/pci_8086_2562
Unique ID: _Znp.lKS3NVuOgDF
SysFS ID: /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:02.0
SysFS BusID: 0000:00:02.0
Hardware Class: graphics card
Model: "Intel i845"
Vendor: pci 0x8086 "Intel Corporation"
Device: pci 0x2562 "i845"
SubVendor: pci 0x1849 "ASRock Incorporation"
SubDevice: pci 0x2562
Revision: 0x03
Memory Range: 0xd0000000-0xd7ffffff (rw,prefetchable)
Memory Range: 0xdff80000-0xdfffffff (rw,non-prefetchable)
IRQ: 16 (167427 events)
I/O Ports: 0x3c0-0x3df (rw)
Module Alias: "pci:v00008086d00002562sv00001849sd00002562bc03sc00 i00"
Driver Info #0:
XFree86 v4 Server Module: intel
Driver Info #1:
XFree86 v4 Server Module: intel
3D Support: yes
Extensions: dri
Config Status: cfg=new, avail=yes, need=no, active=unknown

Primary display adapter: #10

The computer has become very slow with Lucid-and it cant do much without crashing. Give it a couple of Firefox windows to run and then open emails and processor goes full tilt, the fan starts whirring away then it crashes. Karmic could do a lot more stuff, without even getting to 50% processor usage.

August 18th, 2010, 02:58 PM

If you can not get it to work, the best advice is going to 9.10. This will give you a supported system until april 2011, at which time you can give 10.10 and 11.04 a try.

August 18th, 2010, 03:11 PM
Ok, trying some of those fixes, but I cant get into the menu to be able to pick recovery mode-wahtever I do it always boots right into Lucid's login screen.

August 18th, 2010, 03:38 PM
Ok, trying some of those fixes, but I cant get into the menu to be able to pick recovery mode-wahtever I do it always boots right into Lucid's login screen.

Try pushing left-shift while booting.

August 21st, 2010, 05:44 PM
She installed some updates today from update manager and now it boots to just a blank screen, thats stumped me-doesnt respond to anything.

August 22nd, 2010, 08:16 AM
It seems like the machine is so messed up that a clean install of 9.10 is the safest approach.

August 22nd, 2010, 01:42 PM
Thats what I feared, think the updates might have done something-I didnt think about it, had it been my machine I would have checked what they were before I installed them. Hopefully I ll be able to recover her home folder.

August 23rd, 2010, 07:06 PM
I ve used a live cd but when I go into the file system it wont let me copy the files and it wont let me change permissions-how can I change peromissions so I can copy the files?

August 23rd, 2010, 10:43 PM
Have you tried sudo chmod...?

August 23rd, 2010, 11:01 PM
No, not heard of "mod", take it it stands for modify and it ll let me change the permissions?

Actually is there a list somewhere of all the commands?

August 23rd, 2010, 11:12 PM
try from a terminal session

gksu nautilus

it will launch nautilus but as root. you should then be able to copy files to where-ever you need to.

August 23rd, 2010, 11:31 PM
Ok will do, thanks, what does sudo chmod do then?

Was gonna do that in a terminal too.

August 24th, 2010, 03:38 PM
It is all explained here:

Though it is a few years old it is a great guide.

August 24th, 2010, 03:49 PM
Cool, thanks.

August 24th, 2010, 09:46 PM
I ve gone back to Karmic and I managed to save her home folder, but know the syste is only showing 994.5 mb of RAM and not the 1.9 Gb she had before! Any idea where it could have gone!!??

August 24th, 2010, 10:00 PM
Please post the output of

free -m

August 26th, 2010, 02:52 PM
anna@anna-desktop:~$ free -m
total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 994 616 377 0 18 412
-/+ buffers/cache: 185 809
Swap: 2910 4 2905

Heres the output. Seems to say its got 994mb, but at the beginning of this thread I posted her spec and it was 2Gb, not quite sure how 1Gb could disappear as a result of some software probs.

August 26th, 2010, 03:59 PM
total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 994 616 377 0 18 412
-/+ buffers/cache: 185 809
Swap: 2910 4 2905


CODE-tags makes the output easier to read.

Are you sure about the 2 GB?

August 26th, 2010, 05:43 PM
Ah, I see thanks.

Maybe I made a mistake-I m not perfect, but I remember checking in system monitor/system and thinking that she had the same amount of RAM as me.

I spose the only way to find out for sure is to take the cover off and see.

August 31st, 2010, 06:41 PM
Now got probs with the new install of Karmic-wont boot, just get one kernel option (which it WONT boot from) and a few mem test options at boot up.

Mem test takes 2 hours and reports no probs.

But wont boot at all to Karmic now.

Lucid seems to have messed it up totally even ith the drive reformatted and Karmic re installed, which I thought was impossible-cant see how software can break hardware.

August 31st, 2010, 09:39 PM
Did you have wired internet access while installing 9.10, and did you choose 'use entire hard disk for Ubuntu' (or something similar) in the process?

You don't have to reformat manually. It happens automatically during the installation.

August 31st, 2010, 10:39 PM
Did have wired internet access, whilst re-installing, but did also when I first installed it in December and never had any probs til upgrade to Lucid.

I know it reformats automatically, I was just saying that despite reformatting and re-installing Karmic, Lucid seems to have broken the hardware.

I reformatted the entire disc-didnt want any trace of Lucid left after the probs!

September 1st, 2010, 08:25 AM
Then I am out of ideas, sorry. I don't think that you should be concerned with broken hardware, though.

September 1st, 2010, 12:01 PM
Ok, thanks, I just cant understand why a complete new install would suddenly go wrong.

September 1st, 2010, 07:21 PM
Its all very strange-I went down there today and it lists 3 Linux kernels, 2 recovery modes and 2 mem tests when you turn it on.

The mem tests take 2 hours with an ok result and the words "on" displaying on the screen, but nothing else and no boot.

The kernels end up with a blank screen and the recovery modes go into a shell. It list various devices and drivers being present and ok, a long number (which I assumed was the hard drive) as "not found". Simply wont boot properly.

So I tried the live cd and when it boots from that the hard drive doesnt show under places, but it did last week when I rescued all the files and re-installed Karmic.

So I went to re-install Karmic again and the partitioner listed, and this is VERY strange, about 2gb of swap space, 78gb of ext4 formatted hard drive but NO OS at all.

Basically, after 4 days the entire Karmic install just vanished, how the hell could that happen??!!

September 4th, 2010, 11:47 PM
If the system shows more than one kernel right after a clean installation, something went wrong in the process.

Have you tried installing 9.10 using the alternate installer?

September 5th, 2010, 12:14 AM
It was 4 days after installation from the live cd which came out in October 2009, so I d expect to see several kernels (mine has about 20 listed on start up!) so update manager had showed loads of updates to install, including any updated kernels.

Its a bit strange that it ran fine for 4 days and then the install literally disappeared!