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Thread: Can't even get started.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Question Can't even get started.

    This is my first day here so please bear with me.
    I've managed to find one thread in the forum that was similar to my problem but the discussion got so technical that i just had to stop reading. And that was in Absolute beginners!
    So, here's the story for anyone who can help.
    Downloaded Ubuntu. Successfully burned the CD. Got the menu offering the various options and chose the trial at reboot. Rebooted my computer and got nothing but a black screen with a single white cursor in the upper left hand corner.
    Had to eject the CD and pull the plug to get the PC to shut down. Tried it several times and got nowhere so here I am.
    I was under the impression, from the info at the download site (, that once the CD was burned, getting to demo the OS would be a cake-walk.
    Now, i'm what you might call techno-impaired. I really just want to kick microsoft to the curb. I've got an old gateway PC with a pentium 4 processor and not a whole lot of memory. If i'm wasting my time trying to get this to work, just be honest and let me know.
    If there's a relatively simple explanation for what's happening and a reasonably easy fix, i'm all ears.
    Thanks to all in advance for any help anyone can offer.
    There is no way to Peace. Peace is the Way.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2006

    Re: Can't even get started.

    Can you advise how much ram you have in the system? It takes a little bit to run the LiveCD.

    If its less then 512 you might have issues.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

    Re: Can't even get started.

    how long did you wait? It takes a while for it to boot into the OS off of the CD on an old PC.

  4. #4
    anewguy is offline I Ubuntu, Therefore, I Am
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Sometimes I visit earth
    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Wink Re: Can't even get started.

    As already mentioned:

    - please post back the specs of the computer - cpu/memory/video adapter/etc

    - it can take what seems like a *LONG* time for it to load up from the CD. Allow at least 5 minutes, then check your drive light and watch for activity. If you don't see any drive activity for about 2 minutes it might be a problem.

    We can provide options to boot in when it's booting to get around some problems - video and power options for example.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    The Left Coast of the USA

    Re: Can't even get started.

    How do you define "successfully burned the CD"?

    In addition to the foregoing questions (your hardware specs are quite important), did you:

    1. Check the md5sum as described on the download site?

    2. Attempt to run the option to check the disk for errors?

    I agree with the general tenor of the preceding posts. We need to be sure your specs will support the LiveCD.

    If they don't, you can install from the "Alternate" image. However, your performance may not be spectacular. There are lighter versions such as Xubuntu and Lubuntu (not "official" yet, but nearly there) that will run on lower-spec machines.
    Last edited by QIII; July 20th, 2010 at 05:01 AM.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Karma BC
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: Can't even get started.


    There are some known bugs/issues too. Here's a link to the release notesand the forum sticky for known workaroundsand ditto on the idea of checking the CD for errors. - limited ram can cause slow loading; and there are boot parameters that have gotten some people around the blinking cursor - here's a link to boot-parameter fixes
    Last edited by utnubuuser; July 20th, 2010 at 06:00 AM.
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: Can't even get started.

    Ubuntu 10.04 does have some difficulty installing on low RAM machines. I had to update from 9.10 via Update Manager and that was with 256mg RAM. Once it is on though, with a little tweaking, it will run brilliantly on as little as 265mg RAM if you have about 2gb SWAP.

    As the others have said we really need to know your system specs, things like RAM Video Card etc so we can help you get the best Ubuntu experience for your setup.
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