[SOLVED] Ubuntu Desktop Does Not Load After Entering The Username and Password

by Abhishek Bhatnagar on May 24, 2009



After a long time of neglect, I powered on my old desktop yesterday and decided to install Ubuntu 8.10 on it. I rarely use my old desktop which is why I decided to make it a test machine and run it dual boot with Windows XP and Ubuntu.


I installed ubuntu in dual boot using Wubi : See this tutorial on Install Ubuntu (Linux) Inside Windows Without Formatting Hard-Disk


I had done installation on my HP Pavallion laptop, it worked fine, but not my old desktop.

On my desktop after I enter user id and password at Ubuntu login screen, it will accept username and password, but it will not show the ubuntu desktop after login.


I searched for the reason for this problem on ubuntu forums and found an easy solution. I will share the same with you in this post.


Before I tell you the fix lets talk why this problem occurred in the first place. In ubuntu 8.10 CD, there is a Software Problem in  Intel video driver for the older Intel 830 and 845 integrated video cards. My old desktop had Intel 845 card. Because of the graphics driver issue, the desktop was not loading.



The solution is fairly simple, disable these derivers and then restart the computer and ubuntu will load without any problems. It will update the drivers to latest drivers afterwards during online upgrade of Ubuntu.


Follow these simple steps to disable the Intel drivers which stop the Desktop to load properly :


1. After entering the username and password, the screen will go blank with the Mouse Cursor still working. In this condition, press these three keys on keyboard together : Ctrl + Alt + F1 . Pressing these three keys together will load the recovery console. It will ask your password, type the password and press enter.


2. On recovery console type the following commands one by one and press enter.

sudo apt-get remove compiz
sudo apt-get remove compiz-core

While running the above commands, it will ask for your password or confirmation. Proceed with Y for yes and press enter.


3. Restart the computer and Ubuntu 8.10 will load normally.


It worked for me, try it out. Share your comments and suggestions below.

Credit Ubuntu forums.

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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Shekar January 27, 2010 at 10:16 pm

Hello, Thanks for your Help my system also giving same problem………….this is worked for me

Thanks a lot


oscarhummel May 1, 2010 at 7:42 am

this is exactly the problem that i had immediately after installation. well, not immediately. at first i got my gnome gui just fine but after a reboot it failed to load. just a desktop background and a mouse pointer. the solution given here seems to have worked for me. i just hope that it will stick.

Curious297 May 4, 2010 at 3:52 pm

I have exactly the same problem. Starts up, I log in then only see my desktop background with a small terminal window at the top left corner of the screen. I tried your solution above but I get an error saying that “Package compiz is not installed”

any other ideas please.

PS, I can still access my ubuntu drives from other machines so files are there but cannot see GUI from my ubuntu machine)

Thanks in advance

venu May 11, 2010 at 11:31 pm

above approach did nt work for me on ubuntu 9.10. I had to reinstall ubuntu-desktop

LuN3yDaV3 May 12, 2010 at 12:17 am

My parents’ computer was acting up, I ended up replacing the hard drive and since it was a pretty old computer I figured Ubuntu would play nicer than Windows. Installed Ubuntu 10.04 LTS and got this exact problem. After trying 4-5 recommended fixes from different places I came across this. Worked like a charm! Thanks a bunch!!

Frode Edvardsen June 10, 2010 at 2:53 pm

Thanx! I have always been allergic to Linux. But gave it a try. Ended soon up with this login-problem. Got an allergic reaction. Remembered that I hated Linux. Got hold of your fix. It worked perfect. So, I’ll give Linux a second chance. Thanx again.

Frode – Norway

Ed August 9, 2010 at 6:53 pm

Thanks for the tip! I had just ran updates for Ubuntu 10.04 and had the same issue. The script fixed it after rebooting. Thanks for saving me time so I can continue enjoying my new Linux experience!

Reminis August 30, 2010 at 9:30 pm

Thanks heaps… This also worked for me.
VA Linux 1120 server running Ubuntu Desktop 10.04.1.

Cheers !

Jason Murphree October 18, 2010 at 9:49 pm

Just tried it and I got an error message when running. It said that there was an error because of a previous failure. I still have no desktop.

Jason Murphree October 18, 2010 at 9:53 pm

Seems to be giving me trouble because of a checkbox and hwtest package. Should I try removing those also?

Abhishek October 18, 2010 at 11:45 pm

u can try

Evans October 27, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Thanks a lot!!!!

craa6r February 10, 2011 at 8:24 am

Thanks this worked on ubuntu 10.10. It was taking forever

Marius Gustavsen May 2, 2011 at 1:39 pm

Thanks a lot. :) Worked for me. :)

vicky May 31, 2011 at 6:02 pm

\Hya man

this really works thanks load for the help…

Keep sharing..


garrett August 28, 2011 at 12:23 pm

Thanks, that worked for me!!!

Michael October 24, 2011 at 4:19 pm

Great!!! Thanks! Worked for my case too:
Ubuntu 11.1o Dual booting with Windows 7, installed on HP TX2510.

sara November 14, 2011 at 1:15 am

THANK YOU SO MUCH ! You made my day 😀

Paul December 12, 2011 at 5:13 pm

Thanks a million!

Ini January 3, 2012 at 11:50 pm

Thanks a lot! It also worked for me, although I still don’t understand how. I had Windows Vista showing this problem and I tried many things. I ended up reinstalling Vista with no success and finally tried with Ubuntu. To my desperation I still got the black screen with the moving cursor, but your suggestion seems to have fixed the problem… I hope this lasts for a while… Thanks!! :)

Shantou February 28, 2012 at 1:25 am

It works on my Toshiba Satellite A100 S2211TD! I tried to install Ubuntu 11.10, Fedora 12 and Mint several times and all failed. I was about to give up and happened to see this post.
Thanks a lot!

memiley April 18, 2012 at 6:12 pm

You are a lifesaver.

Brad May 1, 2012 at 6:56 am

Perfect – thank you for the great instructions! 12.04 working on an old HP Pavilion zd7000 now.

MS June 5, 2012 at 5:43 am

Worked like a charm – I was stuck and unable to figure out what to do next.
BTW it worked on the 12.04 of ubuntu – so that bug in Intel graphics driver persists!

solid-snake June 11, 2012 at 9:29 pm

Hello , & many thanks …

Had same problem for 2 days with Ubuntu 12.04 on ThinkPad T420 , following your steps fixed the problem .

Thanks a lot :)


kartik February 10, 2013 at 5:48 pm

thanks worked for me,
dont know how

Erik April 27, 2013 at 2:43 am

Aren’t drivers important? If i delete them what will then go missing?

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