[ubuntu-uk] Unity - fails to load automatically -- "low-graphics mode crashes"

Matthew Sturdy matt.sturdy at gmail.com
Wed May 9 12:09:27 UTC 2012

Hi all,

I have just _upgraded_ (ie. not clean install) from 11.10 to 12.04 on my
dual-boot Lenovo E420s (Ubuntu 12.04 / Windows 7) using the distribution
upgrade button in the update manager.

I had problems at first, as the remnants of Gnome Shell gave me all sorts
of headaches.  So, I removed all the Gnome Shell repos, and re-installed
the unity packages from scratch.

After a good 6 months away from it, Unity is fantastic.  I am more than
happy to stay with it, and not go back to Gnome Shell.

I have only one issue, unity doesn't actually load properly in the first
place.  I'll try to explain what's happening in the hope that someone can
help me diagnose the issue.

- I start up, and select Ubuntu from the dual boot menu.
- Then the screen goes black, with a non-blinking cursor in the top-right
of the screen.
- Then I see the "low-graphics" mode dialog.  This dialog doesn't respond
to anything.
- I use ALT+CTRL+F3 to drop to tty3. (tty1 and tty2 don't respond)
- I use 'sudo service gdm restart' to bounce the GDM.
- then I see the login pages, and everything is normal from then on.  As
far as I can tell, I am using Unity 3D when I log in.

I have a separate discrete graphics card, which doesn't sit well with
Linux, but the built-in processor is not underpowered.  However, I suspect
that this is confusing gdm when it starts, and so it is showing me this

Is anyone else having this issue?  Can anyone help me resolve it?  I don't
really know where to start looking unfortunately... but would really
appreciate any advice.

It's not the end of the world... as I have a workaround... but would love
to get it resolved.

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