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#1 2019-06-02 21:02

gurdonark
Member
Registered: 2016-01-08
Posts: 15

Desktop freezes during loading

I run the Trinity Desktop on an install of Q4OS Orion on one of my laptops. Yesterday I logged in as usual. However, the log-in froze on the screen that says "loading desktop" with the start screen showing. I have had this install for a couple of years on my "travel" laptop, an HP Elitebook 2540 and gotten good results from it.

After the desktop failed to load, I used alt/control/f! to get a log-in screen and logged in. Then I entered startx.  This time I got to my desktop. However,the desktop is not working as normally. The menu that I reach from the TDE Menu shows the applications in the order in which I maintain them, but instead of whole words such as "Internet" or "Multimedia" in my presets, a few wrong letters and lots of omitted letters show. The packages still work.  When I use Firefox, the letters all appear normal and I have pretty full functionality.

I plan to upgrade soon to Scorpion anyway, and perhaps to switch to an SSD. But I'd like to restore this system if I could for ease of transfer.

Thank you, in advance, for any help anyone can offer.

Last edited by gurdonark (2019-06-02 21:03)

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#2 2019-06-03 06:21

bin
Member
From: U.K.
Registered: 2016-01-28
Posts: 695

Re: Desktop freezes during loading

No matter where you start with this sort of issue the final cause will be something completely different. Have to work on the assumption that you have not added any new or oddly sourced software, downloaded strange deb files etc etc.

As you are using a normal hard drive, and the machine could be 8 or more years old, thoughts turn to hard drive issue.

I would suggest that if you have not already done so, make sure you have a backup of all your important data. If you are worried about booting direct you can of course boot using live media and copy stuff to an external drive  of some sort.

After that, boot using the live media and run 'sudo badblocks -v /dev/sda' in Konsole.  That will return information about any immediately visible issues with the disk.

Whilst in live mode you could always try installing gsmartcontrol.
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gsmartcontrol

and run that from the menu. You select the disk and then you can see the disk error log and also run a series of diagnostic tests on the disk.

You could also try booting in 'Safe Mode' by tapping ESC key while booting. That will bring up the Grub menu > Advanced and down to select Recovery / safe mode. That works OK, then try rebooting as normal and see what happens.

In the end it may come down to swapping in the new SSD sooner rather than later smile

Last edited by bin (2019-06-03 08:47)

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#3 2019-06-03 19:03

gurdonark
Member
Registered: 2016-01-08
Posts: 15

Re: Desktop freezes during loading

Thank you for the helpful reply.

It's the classic situation--a log-in and routine Debian repo update with no new software first thing in the morning. Things worked fine then.  In mid-morning, I brought the laptop up again, only to find this new issue. The usual delicious irony applied--it failed when I was at the Texas Linux Fest, hoping to take notes during a speaker's talk.

I was able to load an LXDE desktop on to get a bit of graphical interface. But it's clear that there are issues. In line with your thinking, I agree that it's time to switch drives, using live media to retrieve any files that I wish to keep. Fortunately, I had recently saved the few key materials for this travel laptop onto a drive and also did not use this computer for storage. Still, I'll either go in with live media or pop the drive into an external hard drive case to ensure that I have gotten everything I want out of this computer. I am so pleased that we live in a time when an SSD is now so affordable.

These diagnostics you list will be useful to me to try to identify the issues and learn about them, though. I appreciate your posting on this.

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#4 2019-06-04 06:17

bin
Member
From: U.K.
Registered: 2016-01-28
Posts: 695

Re: Desktop freezes during loading

No problem - sorry to hear it did what hardware loves to do when you most need it!

Just a couple of other thoughts come to mind - try booting with live media before you splash out on a new drive - just in case it's actually down to a hardware fault such as a bad component, possibly even just a dislodged memory chip. If you can access the RAM board(s) it may be worth a re-seat??

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