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Failed to start the X server

Posted on 2008-06-25
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Last Modified: 2013-12-16
Tried to enable the VNC service from package manager.
Setup it up and  enabled it, added 5500 to firewall.
Service manager always stated successful start, but the service never did start.

Cycled system, now on boot get message "Failed to start the X server (your graphical interface). It seems that the pointer device (your mouse) is not set up correctly. Would you like to view the X server output"

Any help is appreciated.


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Question by:sidwelle
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Expert Comment

by:http:// thevpn.guru
ID: 21870044
run the setup command to re-setup X
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21870084
ran 'setup' and selected 'X configuration' (last option), it just tries to start the X server and fails.

... Couldn't start X server on card 0 ...
... couldn't start X server with old config, trying with fresh configuration ...
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LVL 28

Expert Comment

by:Jan Springer
ID: 21870284
Try reinstalling the drivers for your video card.

If you can't find the drivers for your card in the standard repositories, try livna.
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21870848
Newbe here, any help on how to re-install the video for the card ?
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21872562
There should be a file called /var/log/Xorg.0.log and /var/log/Xorg.0.log.old on your system.
Care to attach them to your next message? It should contain all the relevant information we need to work out this problem.
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21875340
Attached, Thanks ...
Xorg.0.log
Xorg.0.log.old.txt
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Expert Comment

by:PeturIngiEgilsson
ID: 21876081
The error message clearly states that something is wrong with your mouse configuration:
"Cycled system, now on boot get message "Failed to start the X server (your graphical interface). It seems that the pointer device (your mouse) is not set up correctly. Would you like to view the X server output""

According to your Xorg.0.log: "(==) |-->Input Device "<default pointer>"
(==) The core pointer device wasn't specified explicitly in the layout."

Look at /etc/X11/xorg.conf and replace <default pointer> with Mouse0
If that does not work, please attach the content of /etc/X11/xorg.conf so somone can modify it for you.

Cheers :)
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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21876188
It's definetly a problem with your mouse, but it might also be possible that your X server has a mouse configured properly (via USB or the like) but is failing in initializing the core pointer, so adding the following section to your xorg.conf might help:

What type of Mouse do you use? How is it connected (USB, PS/2, serial, ...)?
Section "ServerFlags"

  Option "AloowMouseOpenFail" "True"

EndSection

Open in new window

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Expert Comment

by:PeturIngiEgilsson
ID: 21876217
agriesser: A typo!!! AloowMouseOpenFail
This is better:
Section "ServerFlags"

  Option "AllowMouseOpenFail" "True"

EndSection

Open in new window

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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21876262
That happens when you write EE postings on your iPhone ;)
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21876682
I don't see ... "<default pointer>" in either file.

See attached, thanks

xorg.conf.txt
xorg.conf.backup.txt
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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21877868
Well, that's a rather spartianic xorg configuration file and doesn't mention your mouse at all, so please tell us, how's your mouse connected? Is it a PS/2 mouse, an USB mouse, ...?
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21877984
PS/2 mouse and PS/2 keyboard.  System does have USB connections (4)

Then how did it work before ?

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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21878325
Usually Xorg is able to autodetect all necessary hardware to get the X server up and running, but in your case, it failed. This can have several reasons.

Is the VNC you installed really the only difference or did the VNC package come with some dependencies, f.ex. gpm (the console mouse driver) or something like this?

Could I see the output of `cat /proc/bus/input/devices`? It should list all recognized input devices by the running kernel.
In the meantime, try the attached Xorg configuration file.
xorg.conf.txt
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21878937
You are right, when the package manager installed vnc, it downloaded it and then resolved dependencies.  

I copied in the file you supplied and cycled the machine, but the X still did not start.
Error ...  'could not open /dev/input/mice ....
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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21878985
OK, I attached two more configuration files, please give them a try.
xorg-ps2.conf is basically the same as before but tries to ignore Mouse open errors and xorg-gpm.conf uses the GPM pointing device as the X mouse cursor.

If the configuration files still don't work, please attach the new logfiles (/var/log/Xorg.0.log) again so that I can see what's wrong.


xorg-ps2.conf.txt
xorg-gpm.conf.txt
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21879072
I am getting some other errors:
starting udev: udevd[410]: parse_config_file: can't open '/etc/udev/udev.conf' as config file: No such file  or directory
udevtrigger[412]: parse_config_file: can't open '/etc/udev/udev.conf' as config file: No such file  or directory
udevtrigger[439]: parse_config_file: can't open '/etc/udev/udev.conf' as config file: No such file  or directory

Starting VNC server: no displays configured
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21879359
Here is what I have:
After subing in -ps2.conf,  the system booted and I now get a splash screen, graphical login prompt, and desktop, mouse pointer. Can't control mouse.
Still have that service error on startup: starting console mouse services: O0o.oops(): [server_tools.c(76)]: Could not open /dev/input/mice.

How do I control the desktop wo/mouse ? (its pretty clumsy)
Trying  -gpm file now ...

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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21879474
gpm: same result.
Error: ... Could not open /dev/input/mice.
Also, if I boot the os interactive, I never get a logon prompt ?
the files you requested are attached.

Xorg.0.log-ps2.txt
Xorg.0.log-gpm.txt
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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21890274
The error with "starting console mouse services" comes from gpm which seems to be misconfigured.
In fact, you don't really need gpm and I think it breaks stuff for you, so is it possible to uninstall gpm again without uninstalling VNC too?

Using the PS/2 configuration file, Xorg says that it can't open /dev/psaux (the device file for PS/2 mice).

(EE) xf86OpenSerial: Cannot open device /dev/psaux
      No such file or directory.
(WW) Mouse0: cannot open input device

So is it really a PS/2 mouse or is it something that's connected via USB?

Could I please see the output of `cat /proc/bus/input/devices` and `cat /proc/bus/input/handlers` as well as the output of `ls -l /dev/input`?
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21891324
a quick google search explained that " ... GPM adds mouse support to text-based Linux applications ... "
How much would I loose if its not there? I have seen discussions on how to get/troubleshoot vnc service view con before the desktop even loads.

I won't be able to get the files for a day or two days, hope thats alright.


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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21891511
Basically you don't loose anything if you do always work on the X server tty, that means the text console is the black thing you're currently seeing because your X server doesn't work. Usually I would say that the text console is only of use to more expierienced users nowadays or for troubleshooting stuff and troubleshooting works well without mouse support too. Of course one can have both (the X server and gpm) running at the same time, but currently I guess that it causes the problems you're seeing so get rid of it in the first step and if you ever feel the need for mouse support on the text console, you can easily install it again and try to get it work on your system.
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21899552
Attached are the output(s), but I don't have a folder named '/dev/input'   on the system ?

proc.bus.input.devices.txt
proc.bus.input.handlers.txt
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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21902326
OK, it's definetly a PS/2 mouse and it's mapped to mouse0 and event1.
It's strange that you don't have a /dev/input directory, are you using some kind of mdev or software the like that propagates your /dev filesystem?

Is there a file called /dev/mouse0 or /dev/input1, resp. /dev/mice on your system?

You might need to create the device nodes manually (usually not needed, but it seems as if something is broken on your system).
Try to enter the following commands as root and afterwards, try to start your X server again.
cd /dev

mkdir input

mknod -m 660 psaux c 10 1

cd input

mknod -m 660 mice c 13 63

mknod -m 660 event0 c 13 64

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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21903014
are you using some kind of mdev or software the like that propagates your /dev filesystem?
No. All software is what was loaded via the CentOS package manager.

Is there a file called /dev/mouse0 or /dev/input1, resp. /dev/mice on your system?
/dev/mouse0: Yes
/dev/mice:      Yes
/dev/input1     No.

Made the changes and restarted system, still no mouse.

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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21903073
Hmm... The "mice" device node should be in the subdirectory "input", that's what your X server is looking for.
After you rebooted your system, were the newly created device nodes still present?

You don't need to restart your system after creating the device nodes, because I guess they disappeared again after reboot, but if there's a /dev/mice file on your system, try to use this xorg.conf.
xorg.conf.txt
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21908124
Very Cool, I now have mouse again.    Few last questions ...

The 'Package manager' now has a popup stating the two updates are available:
1. Updated Kernel
2. Updated SAMBA

Should I stay away from updates from now on ?
I am assuming that it was the 'resolving of dependencies' that caused the problem in the first place.

I still see some errors, On shutdown: '... console mouse down failed ...'
and on boot-up '... console mouse /dev/input ... not found ...'

Don't know how important it is ?
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Accepted Solution

by:
agriesser earned 500 total points
ID: 21908261
No, just install the updates. Samba won't hurt in this regard and the kernel can only be better ;)

No, the problem is definetly that somehow the directory /dev/input on your system has been deleted and I assume that you have some software like udev installed (might be installed by default) that propagates /dev with the information gotten from the kernel, so maybe even a kernel update fixes this issue again?
Give it a shot.

The errors you're seeing come from gpm which tries to access the default mouse device the same way as the X server does, using /dev/input/mice (which isn't available), so you either need to fix the /dev/input/mice issue or modify /etc/gpm.conf to read from /dev/mice too.
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Author Closing Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 31470775
The update did not break anything.
Thanks for all the help !

Now I still have one last problem that started all this. On load, the VNC daemon gives an error:
'No displays configured'
Any clue on where to start ?
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Expert Comment

by:agriesser
ID: 21909123
Does ths workaround work for you?

http://linux.ll--ll.net/archives/25
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Author Comment

by:sidwelle
ID: 21909609
No, I changed the line that it suggested, but I still get a failure.  "vncserver failed. The error was: Starting VNC server: 2: ....  [FAILED]"

I will post a new issue
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