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Old 03-05-2007, 09:37 PM   #1
Registered: Feb 2007
Posts: 80

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graphical/non-graphical mode

Quick question:

How to switch between graphical mode and non-graphical mode (console) using keyboard keys (it should be a combination of ALT+CTL+something)...please let me know if you remember it.

I am more concern about the login page.

Old 03-05-2007, 10:13 PM   #2
Registered: Nov 2005
Location: Central New York
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 405

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Normally, Ctrl+Alt+F1 at the login page will switch you over to tty1. Alt+F1 through Alt+F6 are usually tty1 through tty6. And Alt+F7 should put you back on the login page.
Old 03-05-2007, 10:32 PM   #3
Registered: Feb 2007
Posts: 80

Original Poster
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Thanks, and sorry I was not quite clear before, I do not know what has happened or what I have done that when I boot my computer, it does not go to the graphical mode any more (login page), instead, it goes to non-graphical tty1 (or as you said, by ALT+CTRL+F1..F6, I can login but in non-graphical mode). Now the question is how I can get it back to graphical mode, even the login page. I have seen people do this, it is not like a complete re-boot and it is quick (just 1-2 seconds to switch from consol to the graohical mode), I just can't remember it.

Any idea?
Old 03-05-2007, 11:06 PM   #4
Registered: Nov 2005
Location: Central New York
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 405

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Two questions.

1. What distribution are you running?

2. In /etc/inittab, what is your default runlevel? Look for the following line and post it here.
Old 03-06-2007, 12:01 AM   #5
Registered: Mar 2006
Distribution: rhel 5
Posts: 74

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after logging in u can type

that will start the GUI
Old 03-06-2007, 09:45 AM   #6
Registered: Mar 2006
Location: Plovdiv, Bulgaria
Distribution: OpenSuse 11.3
Posts: 55

Rep: Reputation: 15
As pointed above, look at your "/etc/inittab", particularly the line, containing "initdefault". It must be set to 5, to start the graphical login at boot. The so called "runlevel" controls which services are started. In the file itself is usually explained briefly what the different runlevels mean. More in detail, there is several directories under "/etc/rc.d/" - "rc1.d" ... "rc6.d", containing symlinks to the startup scripts of the services. At boot, the process 1 - "init" - reads the corresponding "rc*.d " directory and executes what it finds in there. At runlevel 5, one of the services is the display manager, which shows the graphical login screen and manages the graphical sessions. Using the display manager, is, AFAIK, better way than "startx". Not long ago, I broke my KDM (KDE Display Manager), so I could "startx" from tty, but couldn't get the login screen. Some suggestions for diagnostics:

1) Check the current runlevel:
$ /sbin/runlevel
look at the last digit of the output. If it is 5, then the problem is somewhere else than in "inittab"
If it's 3 or 2, then it is normal to login at the tty. Change the "initdefault" in "/etc/inittab" to 5 and reboot, or switch to runlevel 5 manualy - as root:
# init 5
The latter is the way I prefer, since I reboot very rarely, only on power loss or when upgrading some core component like the kernel, which requires for example, reinstalling the video card driver, that can't be done with X working. I boot in runlevel 3 (Multiuser, console, with networking), make few checks, then I switch to runlevel 5.

2) If the runlevel is 5, but you don't have the login screen, try starting X maunaly, by "startx". If it works, then the problem is most probably in the display manager. If not, look at the output of the "startx" command. The problems with the X are most probably because of misconfiguration. Did you used some tool to configure X, eg. "nvidia-xconfig"?

3) Try starting the display manager manually - as root:
# xdm (the generic X display manager)
# kdm (comes with KDE)
# gdm (comes with GNOME)
The differences between them are mainly in the look and feel. While I had KDM broken, I used XDM instead (it's just more ugly .

Anyway, post what you remember you did before the problem occured. Examine "/var/log/boot.log", "/var/log/messages" and especially "/var/log/prcsys.log" which is the "init" log file - look out for "[FAILED]" or something like that.


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