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Thread: dell monitor 'cannot display this video mode' error after Ubuntu install

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Beans
    2

    dell monitor 'cannot display this video mode' error after Ubuntu install

    hi. i tried installing ubuntu 12.04 32-bit on a Dell Inspiron 531 desktop, as a dual-boot scenario with Windows Vista already installed.

    The installation process seemed to go smoothly, and after a reboot, i see the boot screen (telling me i am using Dell hardware) and after that goes away, where i am expecting the option to boot into windows or ubuntu, i get a black screen with the following error on my monitor:

    1: Auto Detect (Analog Input)
    Cannot Display This Video Mode
    Optimum resolution 1440x900 60Hz

    If I press the enter key, the Ubuntu stock background comes up, then a screen with various shades of orange and black that is definitely not supposed to be there.

    Any help would be appreciated, thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Beans
    7,796
    Distro
    Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: dell monitor 'cannot display this video mode' error after Ubuntu install

    Hi dirty_ass_shoes. Welcome to the forum

    Wait about 20-30 seconds after that message and press Ctrl+Alt+F1

    You should get into a login screen in text mode. Login as you, and then:

    Edit the grub file:
    Code:
    sudo nano /etc/default/grub
    Look for a like that looks like this:
    Code:
    #GRUB_GFXMODE=640x480
    Remove the '#' so it looks like this:
    Code:
    GRUB_GFXMODE=640x480
    Alternative you may change the resolution for one that your monitor supports like 800x600, 1024x768 or 1280x1024.

    Save the file. And update grub:
    Code:
    sudo update-grub
    Reboot:
    Code:
    sudo reboot
    Hope it helps. Let us know how it goes.
    Regards.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Beans
    2

    Re: dell monitor 'cannot display this video mode' error after Ubuntu install

    hi, thanks for the fast reply!

    it took a few tries to reach the text mode screen, i suppose i just had to get my timing right or something, but i WAS able to follow your instructions.

    after following your directions, the computer rebooted and i chose Ubuntu, with Linux 3.11.0-15-generic, and it seemed to load as it should.

    however, i was going to show my dad the grub menu so he could log into windows in the morning, so i restarted the computer using the gear in the upper right of the desktop.
    it rebooted, dell logo then grub, and when i chose ubuntu again, i'm having the same issue where there is a flashing line as if for text for several seconds at the top left of the screen, and then the ubuntu with dots under it splash screen, then a black screen with the mouse cursor, then the stock background for just a moment, and then the orange & black broken screen again.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Beans
    7,796
    Distro
    Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: dell monitor 'cannot display this video mode' error after Ubuntu install

    Hold the key SHIFT while booting to stop at the grub menu.

    Regards.

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