[ubuntu-uk] Ubuntu/Linux is still not an OS for the masses - discuss

Will Bickerstaff will.bickerstaff at gmail.com
Wed Oct 13 22:25:49 BST 2010

On Wed, Oct 13, 2010 at 6:41 PM, Rob Beard <rob at esdelle.co.uk> wrote:
> On 13/10/10 16:30, Roy Jamison wrote:
>> Do all of these machines have nVidia graphics cards?
>> Just a thought, but there's a known issue with the new Xorg 1.9 ABI that
>> breaks the older nVidia drivers, and I'm guessing the 6800 would be one
>> of them, hence the reason that Ubuntu *thinks* it is running ok. That
>> might also explain the fact that there is no X fallback coming up.
>> Kernel modesetting commands anyone?
>> I remember seeing something about a machine with SiS graphics...I had
>> trouble with them too :(
> With regards to video problems, on 10.10 (and IIRC 10.04 LTS) when you
> boot from the CD (or even USB stick) as soon as it comes up with the
> icon of a keyboard and a person in a circle press the Enter key.
> Then you can choose your language.
> Then press F6 and then ESC.
> A line will come up saying Boot Options with a command line after it.
> Press the backspace key a few times to remove the following:
> quiet splash --
> then enter the following:
> xforcevesa --
> The boot options line should now read:
> file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper initrd=/casper/initrd.lz
> xforcevesa --
> Once you have made these changes, press enter to boot.
> You should see a load of boot messages scroll by and eventually with any
> luck a desktop should appear.
> If you get a blank screen, you should be able to press Control - Alt -
> F1 to get to a terminal.  If you're plugged in to the network via a
> network cable with any luck you should be able to run the apport-bug
> command to create a bug report (in text mode it will still walk you
> through logging a bug).
> I must admit, it's been a long while since I've had to boot Ubuntu with
> VESA display drivers (which is essentially a safe mode video driver) so
> I was a bit surprised to see the option has been removed from the boot

Anyone know the reason behind dropping it. It seemed to disappear in Hardy

> menu.  I believe the last machine I had to do it on had an Nvidia
> Geforce 6200 AGP graphics card.  I can't remember what I did to get
> round it (I do remember it involved some head scratching and googling
> from another machine).
> Anyway I hope this is of some help to someone.
> Rob

Isn't this what the OP was getting at. Why isn't this included as on
option, so when the desktop fails to load, which in my experience, is
far more common than is being indicated in this discussion, the user
can reboot and try the 'safe graphics mode' option doing exactly this.

What you've just posted, may as well be written in Urdu, the user the
OP is describing would find this a ridiculously complicated method
just to get a usable desktop.  What they need is a selection that
explains in plain English this is what you do if the normal method
doesn't produce a desktop. Why was the safe graphics mode option ever

Maybe we should even get grub to create a 'safe graphics mode' entry,
that way if a user later experiences video issues they can at least
get to a desktop.

Old nVidia hardware is an absolute nightmare in my experience, and
I'll be keeping clear of nVidia for a long time. I experienced bug
220951 on a system which failed to start X. What to do then. Unusable
tty's and no X.... Screwed. A safe graphics mode in my boot menu would
have made life so much easier. I've learnt, and changed my grub conf
to always create one.

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