X doesn't start, screen constantly turns on and off, small cursor visible during on cycle in Fedora Core 3.

Posted on 2005-03-27
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-15
I upgraded from FC2 to FC3, on a system which worked well.

Now, every time I start up, it gets to the point where it tries starting xorg-x11, and the screen changes mode as normal, i see a mouse cursor, and less than a second later, the screen changes mode.  I tried a different monitor, and it has the same effect.

I tried pressing ctrl-alt-backspace to kill the server and enter command line - but it didn't work.  Perhaps I should note that the keyboard does not seem to respond once X tries to start (num lock etc are not functional)

How can I resolve this?  Or failing that, how can I access the command line?

p.s. this machine has no cd-drive and I have no startup disk
Question by:vincevincevince
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Expert Comment

ID: 13642294
Look at X server log files /var/log/X*log.
There is an error printed, i think.

Author Comment

ID: 13642463
Marxy, many thanks for your reply

Do you know how I can access the log file?  As soon as the machine starts up it starts cycling loading and crashing X.  Even if I try to log in at the prompt that comes before X - by the time I can type in username and password the screen has been taken over by X and the keyboard no longer works.

I can't find a way to kill this X server cycling :S

Assisted Solution

marxy earned 500 total points
ID: 13642480
Try entering single mode
After grub displays login screen
press 'e'
then, add to boot string
init=/bin/sh rw

and press 'b' to boot

This will load single mode.
LVL 14

Accepted Solution

theruck earned 500 total points
ID: 13645042
your keyboard driver for the xorg is not properly set
if you wait a minute the X respawning should stop with error: X respawning too fast. Disabled for * minutes. and you will be able to log on normally and to edit your xorg.conf and set your keyboard.

Author Comment

ID: 13652973
theruck - I think it is not respawning slowly enough.  I finally gave up I'm afraid, and used the advice from marxy to burn a CD of my data from the command line, reformatted and installed FC3 clean.

Many thanks for your help.

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