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Thread: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2020
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    25

    I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    I was playing around with Linux then I had the brilliant idea of stopping gdm service just to see what happens (I thought I would have to log in manually via CLI) so I went
    systemctl disable gdm
    systemctl stop gdm
    Then I saw a black screen of terror and rebooted thinking I would have to log in manually via CLI but no. It doesn't even load a CLI. My Ubuntu broke. Is it over or is it still possible to make it work again?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Sunny Southend-on-Sea
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    8,313
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    Kubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa

    Re: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    I'd imagine that either booting to a root terminal from the Grub menu, or booting from a live USB and using a chroot, would work fine for re-enabling it.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
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    1,741

    Re: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    Just a stupid idea, but have you tried to switch to another virtual terminal (ctrl-alt-F1 to ctrl-alt-F7) ? AFAIK in modern Ubuntu the display manager runs in a specific VT (number 1, I think), the GUI runs in another after log in and there should be login prompts on the other virtual terminals. So if the system goes to the VT where the display manager would be if you hadn't stopped and disabled it you should see a black screen, but the other terminals should be there and allow you to log in.

    Holger

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
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    melbourne, au
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    926
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    Lubuntu Development Release

    Re: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    We have no idea what OS & release you're using.

    On my own system, I'd expect no consequences, the service is 'inactive (dead)' now as I use another DM anyway.

    Given I don't know your release, I'd have expected switching to a text terminal (eg. ctrl+alt+F4) would have allowed text login; did you try? (Catkiller's suggestion of booting to runlevel 1 is what I'd try next if that failed)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    London, England
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    Hidden!
    Distro
    Ubuntu Development Release

    Re: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    To anyone reading this thread and tempted to learn by experimenting, please do it on a second install of Linux/Ubuntu that you do not mind do a re-install with. Please do not do it on your daily work system.

    We all learn from our mistakes. Better to learn from the mistakes of others.

    This might have something useful.

    https://help.gnome.org/admin/gdm/stable/

    Regards
    Last edited by grahammechanical; March 28th, 2021 at 11:45 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


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Toronto Canada
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    1,012
    Distro
    Ubuntu Mate 18.04 Bionic Beaver

    Re: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    ...or have a recent and reliable backup, preferably a full disk image that can be restored relatively quickly.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2020
    Beans
    25

    Re: I think I screwed up very badly (need help)

    Thanks for all the replies. I was able to access the terminal with the CTRL + ALT + F2 - F6 keys and I decided to install sddm and plasma desktop to give it a second chance. Its all working again, thanks!

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