Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (4343 mails)

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Re: [SLE] Why am I afraid to boot my 8.0?
  • From: Tom Emerson <osnut@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 05 Nov 2002 14:15:15 -0800
  • Message-id: <200211051415.15757.osnut@xxxxxxxxxxx>
On Monday 04 November 2002 21:32, ZephyrQ wrote:
> First, the problem. Due to a glitch/powersurge/young-un kicking the
> case (I'm not sure which) I lost my ability to go into X.
> So, now, the questions.
> 1. Is there a key-press sequence I can use to bypass/turn-off the
> graphical login before it comes up?

During the lilo or grub boot sequence, you usually have about 5 seconds to
press "a key" to stop the automatic startup [unless you've set the delay to
zero...] This is symbolized by a colored bar (or bars, depending on the
screen layout) that grows or shrinks (again depending on version -- seems
like SuSE changes it every release "because they can") Once you've pressed a
key to stop the boot process, you'll notice the "boot command" line at the
bottom/top of the screen [again, versions...] which probably reads "linux".
Depending on your hardware, it may have "other options" included [such as
"ide-scsi=/dev/hdx" if you have a CD-writer]

From here, type the number "3", so at the very least the prompt reads:

boot=linux 3

This overrides the default "runlevel" and forces the system to start at
"runlevel 3", which is the text-only runlevel.

*my guess* is that during the subsequent (re)installation of the system, the
"default" runlevel got set to 5, which corresponds to the graphical runlevel.
This is buried somewhere under /etc/sysconfig, and there are some SuSE
specific tools for changing it -- if you want to go "directly" to the source,
look for the file /etc/inittab -- this is what the suseconfig editor
(runlevel editor) edits and what the system startup script(s) reads to
determine "how to start your system" :)

Now, if you're a little slow on the initial keystrokes (or you simply don't
want to "needlessly reboot a running system"), you can press CTL-ALT-FN1
(function key 1) This *should* take you back to the initial
"pseudo-graphical" text only startup screen. CTL-ALT-fn2 (through 5 or 6)
gives you a traditional white-on-black straight text mode only screen --
these are "virtual terminals", which most people don't even know exist.

From any of these virtual terminals, log on as root and issue the command:

init 3

that does the same thing as booting with "linux 3" -- namely, it switches the
system to runlevel 3 [an alternate is to use the command "telinit 3", which
does the same thing but *might* be cleaner...] From any of these "straight
text" virtual terminals, CTL-ALT-FN7 takes you back to the "graphical" (X)
screen. You might also notice on your suse/KDE "start button" menu an entry
that reads "start new session" -- this starts a NEW session without actually
logging you off of the current one, and you'll find it can be switched to
with the sequence CTL-ALT-FN8 (and the next would use fn9...)

> 2. Am I missing anything in the settings to cause these lock-ups? The
> new NVidia drivers worked well for 3 months but now are costing me *way*
> too much time.

dunno -- I just got an ATI card :)

> 3. </small rant on/> Is there any way I can get my Yast1 back? Yast2,
> while slick and pretty, doesn't allow me to abort to a prompt (to fix
> problems) and hides too many things. </small rant off/>

Umm, no -- SuSE has an explanantion in their help database that boils down to
"it was too much work maintaining a separate text-only interface", so they've
modularized yast2 to be "user-interface independant" at the back end and uses
ncurses or qt as the front end. *if* you start yast2 in a text-only
environment (and have ncurses installed) you can get that "slick text
interface", but it still hides too many details (especially the 8.1 online

> 4. Finally, what could I have done to streamline this process
> initially? The initial problem seemed to be in a /tmp/lock* file--could
> I have just deleted the /tmp directory?
> Thanx.

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