unable to boot after openoffice & java jre install
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i then proceeded to reboot so all the installation parameters would take effect (maybe i didnt need to do this, but the habit is in me from windows). it boots to the "start up screen", finishes all the tasks associated with the start up screen (the status bar gets to the end). at this point, i normally get the login screen with session options, etc. however, now it goes to a black screen and sits.
there is a "press any key to enter menu" and a "press I to enter interactive mode" option (both before i get to the "start up screen", but pressing any key or I doesnt get me anything different than the normal boot.
i really dont have any idea how to fix this and i am trying to avoid a reinstall. any help would be tremendous.
ps - i probably incorrectly posted this in the Enterprise Linux forum - i am using redhat enterprise, so i didnt read anything more like, well, a newbie. sorry about that and posting it here again.
Please clarify what happens at startup. There are a minimum of 3 phases:
BIOS initialization, POST and maybe startup of a 3rd party disk driver
boot---control passed to the harddrive where a loader such as grub is installed
Linux init---this starts when you see something like "uncompressing Linux--OK, booting the kernel"
For the third phase, the system keeps a log of every step (This is somewhere in /var)
We need to know exactly where in the startup sequence it gets stuck.
One thing to try is to boot to single-user mode (CLI only) and see if that much looks OK.
sorry, i thought the 'startup screen' was specific.
i clear bios and init. the next phase gives messages like "start in cups" "starting HAL daemon". this is shown on a nice X looking window, i have the option to show details (which shows messages like "starting ..." or hide details and i just get a status bar (this is the 'startup screen' i was referring to). under normal conditions after this screen it immediately goes to the login screen (enter user name+password, choose session, reboot, shutdown). it finishes starting all the processes normally (i get an OK status after each) and it brings up a grey screen which normally shows login options and hangs (though now its just gray) for about 2 seconds and then goes black & all HD activity stops.
how can i boot to single-user mode? i get a message after clearing bios "press any key to enter menu" but hitting keys then doesnt enter a menu and after clearing init i get a message "press I to enter interactive startup" but hitting "I" also doesnt let me do anything interactive.
at the moment, the only way i can think to access anything on the drive (e.g., /var to look for details) is to pull the HD and plug it into another machine, which i only have windows machines for that - can they read ext2 formatted HDs?
You can get utilities for Windows that read ext_. Mine is something like "ext2fs" and it works very well.
To boot in single user mode:
During boot-up, you should at some point see the GRUB menu. If you hit any key while this is showing, then it should put you in the grub shell which allows you to edit the grub commands. What you need to do is simply add the word "single" to the kernel line.
If the grub menu is NOT appearing, it means that it has been disabled. In this case, you need to use your idea---or, better yet, get one of the various "live CD" distros---eg Knoppix. You can use this to boot, and it also has a lot of useful utilities.
so, i have a knoppix CD and am able to boot into knoppix. i can access all the directories on the HD and have copied the /var/ directory over to my USB jump drive. it contains the following directories:
autofs, backups, cache, games, lib, local, lock, log, mail, run, spool, and www
i guess the info i want is in log. there are a number of files & folders in /var/log, most of the files are empty, except Xorg.0.log and wtmp. there's very little in wtmp (most of it symbols) and a lot in Xorg.0.log, i would paste all of it below, but its very long and i dont want to put it all up if i dont need to.