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Fixing black screen after login in Ubuntu 14.04

How to fix black screen after login in Ubuntu 14.04?

(Ohje suomeksi lopussa.)

A lot of Linux-support customers have contacted us recently asking to fix their Ubuntu laptops and workstations that suddently stopped working. The symptom is that after entering the username and password in the login screen, they are unable to get in. Instead they see a flickering screen that then goes all black for a while, and then returns back to the login screen.

This problem is caused by an update that didn’t install cleanly and left the graphical desktop environment in a broken state.

The fix is to open a text console by pressing Ctrl+Alt+F1 and then logging in in text mode. Once in, issue these commands to complete the upgrade successfully:

sudo dpkg --configure -a
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade -y

Finally run sudo reboot, Ubuntu restarts, and then you can log in again normally.


Sisäänkirjautumisen jälkeen näkyvän mustan ruudun korjaaminen Ubuntu 14.04:ssä

Useat asiakkaat ovat viime päivinä ottaneet meihin yhteyttä tilatakseen tukea Ubuntu-läppärin tai -työaseman korjaukseen, kun se yllättäen lakkasi toimimasta oikein. Oire on, että sisäänkirjautumisessa, käyttäjätunnuksen ja salasanan syöttämisen jälkeen ruutu vilkkuu ja on hetken musta. Tämän jälkeen näyttö tulee takaisin kirjautumisnäkymään.

Ongelma johtuu Ubuntun päivityksestä, joka on epäonnistunut ja jättänyt graafisen työpöytäympäristön toimimattomaan tilaan.

Korjauksen voi tehdä itse avaamalla tekstipäätteen painamalla Ctrl+Alt+F1 ja kirjautumalla sisään tekstitilassa. Sen jälkeen voi ajaa päivityksen loppuun onnistuneesti komentamalla:

sudo dpkg --configure -a
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade -y

Lopuksi aja sudo reboot. Ubuntun uudelleenkäynnistymisen jälkeen sisäänkirjautuminen ja käyttö pitäisi onnistua normaalisti.

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34 thoughts on “Fixing black screen after login in Ubuntu 14.04

  1. Timo Jyrinki says:

    Is there a bug report about the issue on Launchpad, and which package / version is causing the problem?

    Notably I maintain several 14.04 LTS machines and haven’t seen this problem (all of them are up-to-date), so it’d be very useful to narrow down which subset of people the problem is affecting. For example, is it graphics drivers, like NVIDIA users affected or what?

    1. Farahana says:

      Mine is amd r9 series.

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  3. Umesh says:

    As upgrade requires internet connection, first connect to internet first in guest session. and then open a text console by pressing Ctrl+Alt+F1. Worked for me thanks :)

  4. Sananaz says:

    I have same issue. Above solution works for me. Many thanks.

  5. Rob says:

    Worked for me on Ubuntu 16.04. Thank you

  6. JOÃO CARLOS says:

    Thank you. It has also worked for me. Ubuntu 16.04. Installed yesterday. Today I could see only the mouse cursor and some blinking alerts about connections over a blank screen. Your solution worked just fine. Tks again.

  7. leonardo says:

    I have or had an similar issue. I have Dell 1505 Ati 1300 card 64 MB. Intel centrino duo. An old but respected machine. I upgrade to lubuntu 14.04 then in the middle of any session the black screen comes, but to begin to work again i have to reboot but again, agian. In this moment i have 2 hours after made the instructions above, and think it is fixed. Solution…i hope. Thanks a lot.

  8. Nick says:


  9. Darthvader says:

    Thanks a lot!!! This has worked like magic !

  10. Frank says:

    This solution did not help on my Dell Vostro 3460 (originally Win7) laptop with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.
    The system boots to the login screen, and is fine if I login with a non-admin account (so it’s not simply a failure of the hardware). But with the admin account a dialog flashes up top left for a fraction of a second and then the screen is completely black/blank. I can open the tty as described here, but after running those commands the behaviour is unchanged.

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  12. Arun says:

    I have the blackscreen issue. When the system boots, it doesn’t even show the Ubuntu boot process. The screen is completely black. I think there’s something wrong with display drivers. The problem after an update in Ubuntu 14.04. Later, I upgraded to Ubuntu 16.04 using recovery mode. But, still the issue was not resolved. I checked the Additional Drivers option. But, there’s no option for Graphics/video drivers.

  13. raj says:

    I don’t even get the terminal.
    How can run those commands?
    I can just see the black screen with curser.
    how can i fix it?

  14. Subhadip says:

    Perfect. Thank you.

  15. boubker says:

    Thank you . Also Worked for me on Ubuntu 16.04

  16. Kat says:

    Thank you for the solution, it worked on Ubuntu 16.04 also, have been searching for solution since two hours damn, anyway thanks a lot.

  17. Manali B says:’s working..😇😇

  18. Rahul mangal says:

    When i enter any command an error occured.
    sudo: /usr/bin/sudo must be owned by uid 0 and have the setuid bit set

    Please help me.

  19. smoking camel says:

    Sorry, it did not work for me.
    I have an Nvidia graphics card installed.

    What else can i try ??? please help

  20. Rafa says:

    Thank you very much! It worked for me on Ubuntu 16.04

  21. kirin says:

    I have the same issue.. But the command is unable to solve my issue. The issue occur after update.
    Im using ubuntu 16.04 lts

  22. Anup says:

    It worked for Ubuntu16.04 ..Thanks a lot !

  23. Taha says:

    I had the black screen after ubuntu software app failed to install some updates properly but this method helped me to fix the problem, thanks! .

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  26. Alaa says:

    it doesn’t work with me !!!!!

  27. Alaa says:

    it doesn’t work with me, I am using Ubuntu 17.10 with vbox

  28. Ranjeev says:

    I get a back screen, no prompt, nothing.

    Downloaded and installed Ubuntu 16.04 LTS netinstall (mini.iso) as a guest OS.

    For packages I selected: Standard system utilities, Openssh server, Basic Ubuntu server. This happens when reboots after installation as well as subsequent starts. I also have no external gpu. All Intel.

  29. Ajay Sonawane says:

    This is magic, it worked for me.

  30. Mohsin says:

    I have face the same issue but when open a text console by pressing Ctrl+Alt+F1 and then ask user name and password I have entered the user name and password but an error occurred LOGIN Incorrect.
    Please any solution.

  31. selamawit says:

    I have face the same issue but when open a text console by pressing Ctrl+Alt+F1 it is taking time to oppen. It is not bringing the text in cconsole
    Any solution please

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