Broken Gnome Desktop

NoOp glgxg at
Thu Jan 8 02:33:25 UTC 2009

On 01/07/2009 09:59 AM, NoOp wrote:
> On 01/06/2009 07:29 AM, Steve Brettell wrote:
>> For some reason, my Gnome desktop has broken: I'm running Ubuntu
>> Hardy Heron; there are no panels on the desktop, and I can't restore
>> them, they aren't "hidden," or at least they don't popup when the
>> cursor is hovered over the space where they should be; no
>> applications can be opened from the desktop; Alt-f2 does nothing. I
>> can open files that are on the desktop, but nothing else.
>> Steve Brettell
> Can you use Ctrl-Alt-F2 to get to a terminal? If so, login (enter your
> username and password at the prompts [1]. Then:
> sudo apt-get update
> sudo apt-get upgrade
> sudo apt-get install --reinstall gnome-panel
> sudo reboot now
> That will reboot the machine and when you log back in you should have
> your panels back. If that doesn't work, then go back to the terminal and
> we'll rename .gnome2 so that you can restore/edit/troubleshoot later:
> sudo mv ~/.gnome2 ~/.x-gnome2-x
> sudo reboot now
> When you log back in you should have the original default panels. You
> will find that any modifications that you had to the panels/menus
> previously will be missing, that is expected. You can add them back, or
> you can go through your old .gnome2 settings (now .x-gnome2-x) and see
> if you can figure out what messed up the desktop.
> Note: in many cases it's not necessary to reboot, however without
> knowing what you may have done to your system to cause the panels to go
> away I think it's better to reboot each time.

Apologies, I forgot the footnote:

[1] If you cannot get to the terminal using Ctrl-Alt-F2 (F1 thru F6)
with your current desktop, reboot and do it at the gdm login screen
instead. So, after you reboot, when you get the login screen;
Ctrl-Alt-F1 (or F2, F3 etc). That should put you into a terminal with a
username prompt. Enter the same username that you do with the graphical
gdm interface, and then when prompted enter the same password you
normally use as well. Then enter first set of 'sudo' commands provided
above. After the reboot. login normally. If the panels are still missing
reboot, repeat, and do the second 'sudo' commands, and login normally
after the reboot.

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