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Old 10-23-2014, 02:11 AM   #1
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black screen with flashing cursor when trying to start KDE.

I am really new to Linux and any help would be appreciated. I installed Arch Linux for the first time and everything seemed to be going great. After I successfully installed Arch, I installed KDE and restarted my laptop. I get a black screen with a flashing cursor in the top left and never get past this screen.
Old 10-23-2014, 07:11 PM   #2
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Welcome to LQ.

I haven't used Arch, so I'm not certain that i can help, but here goes.

If I understand correctly, Arch by default is a text by default distro, and if you want GUI, you need to install it (KDE, gnome, etc). That being said, it's possible that the Arch default boot level is to text-only.

The blinking cursor is probably waiting for you to login. The file you may need to edit is /etc/inittab, and you will need root authority to edit the file. So, at the blinking cursor, type root and press enter. You should be prompted for a password: enter the root password you set up during installation. From this point on, be very careful what you do. With root authority you can trash you system in a heartbeat.

If your login was successful, type vim /etc/inittab. That will open file /etc/inittab in the vim editor. Use the arrow keys to move up/down and left/right in the file.
Look for something like this:
# The default runlevel.
where the X is a number (probably 1). Use the arrow keys to move the cursor down and across to that number and press the x key to delete the number.
Then press i to enter insert mode and enter the number 5 (for multi-user graphic mode) in the same space (be careful that the number is between the two : : colons.
Then press the escape key to exit insert mode, followed by :wq (colon w q) to quit vim and save the change.
From that point on, boot should take you to the GUI login for KDE.

In the mean time, to get to KDE without reboot, at the blinking cursor, type startx or startkde and press enter to get to the KDE login screen.

I hope these instructions work for you.
Old 10-23-2014, 08:54 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply. Arch is text based, but I installed KDE. Worked fine before I did that. The blinking cursor doesn't let me type any commands. It looks like it is trying to load. I can still get to the command line though, so I will try what you suggested. Thanks for the help.

Last edited by Noyesster; 10-23-2014 at 08:56 PM.
Old 10-24-2014, 02:16 PM   #4
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have you tried here:
especially "installation" and "troubleshooting".

[rant]if you're admittedly new to linux you have chosen quite a steep learning curve with arch linux.
my path went like this: xubuntu => linux mint => crunchbang => arch (with some distro-hopping in between) and there's 2 years between xubuntu and arch. just saying.[/rant]
Old 10-24-2014, 04:27 PM   #5
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Most likely graphics driver. What graphics card do you have?


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