Tag Archives: ubuntu

Ubuntu 13.10 live CD: Blank screen with EFI

Ubuntu 13.10 fails to start X11 on a Macbook Pro with retina display, and it fails to start X11 on VirtualBox when EFI mode is turned on. Even the failover mode fails. This has been tried with 64-bit version of Ubuntu 13.10. Machines: a 2013 Macbook Pro; and a virtual VirtualBox 4.3.6 machine configured for Ubuntu (64-bit) OS, with EFI turned on.

Ubuntu’s failover configuration tries to use vesa module, which is not available when running under native EFI or UEFI mode.

Let’s fix this by using fbdev module.

  1. Hit ctrl+alt+f1 to switch to console.
  2. Type sudo -i to become root.
  3. Now let’s fix the relevant files:
    cd /etc/X11/
    sed 's/Driver.*"vesa"/Driver "fbdev"/' xorg.conf.failsafe > xorg.conf
  1. Restart X11 et al: service lightdm restart
  2. If necessary, switch to the VT dedicated to X11: hit ctrl+alt+f7

Note that the screen will stay blank for a while longer; give the system some time to proceed.

Good luck!

Getting GNU/Linux to reboot properly on unibody Macbook from late 2009 (Macbook 6,1)

To get a GNU/Linux to reboot properly and not hang in the final step, you need to pass another parameter to the kernel. You need to pass reboot=pci to Linux.

Currently, Debian and Debian-derivatives such as Ubuntu tend to use Grub2 as the bootloader, by default. You need to:

  • edit the /etc/default/grub configuration file, as root, and using your favorite editor
  • find line that looks similar to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX=””
  • if it contained anything inside quotes, don’t delete those commands!
  • into the quotes, add reboot=pci but do not delete existing text
  • back in command line, run update-grub as root user

It should now work flawlessly!

Image: unplgdd.com

Enabling Ctrl+Alt+Backspace in X11

Your X.org misbehaves? You don’t like what’s done in Ubuntu? To forcibly restart Xorg, you have two options:

In /etc/init.d/xorg.conf:

Section “ServerFlags”
Option “DontZap” “false”

or use RightAlt+PrintScreen+K.

Opera and Croatian locale on GNU/Linux

Imate problema s preglednikom Opera dok ste na Ubuntu, Debian ili na drugoj GNU/Linux distribuciji?
Simptomi su stisnut “mali” tekst, problemi s web stranicama koje nemate na drugim OSovima i browserima i accountima, ili problemi sa zaokruživanjem u Javascriptu.
Problem, a i lijek, je jednostavan.

Problem je u tome što ste si postavili hrvatski jezik. Najlakše rješenje je postaviti OS natrag na engleski jezik. Tehničko objašnjenje slijedi u nastavku na engleskom jeziku.


After a short explanation for Croatian users, here’s what the fuss is all about. If you set your locale to Croatian (set your environment variable LANG to value “hr_HR.UTF-8″) you’ll experience issues such as:

  • condensed text with incorrect line spacing (demo: Wikipedia)
  • incorrect Javascript rounding (demo)
  • problem possibly occuring only on a single account, but cleaning most configs doesn’t help

Solutions (pick one):

  • set your locale to English through the GUI
  • set the environment variable LANG to en_US.UTF-8 or just en_US
  • set the environment variable LC_NUMERIC to en_US.UTF-8 or just en_US

Some demo pics:

Wrong rendering: locale set to Croatian

Correct rendering: locale set to English; setting LC_NUMERIC is sufficient

(Yes, they were taken on different accounts. Yes, I have tested in case )


  • Launch terminal
  • Install Croatian locale. Under Debian, install package locales and then, as root, dpkg-reconfigure locales and mark hr_HR.UTF-8; there’s no need to set it as system default afterwards
  • Run Opera as regular user from Terminal: LANG=hr_HR.UTF-8 opera
  • Visit one of these URLs:
    • http://drupal.org/node/333967 (text invisible)
    • http://daiwai.de/test/jsdecimals.html (rounding to 28 instead of 28.45)
    • http://en.wikipedia.org/ (text extremely condensed)

Where does this bug apply (at least):

  • Opera 9.64 build 2480 from official repositories
  • Debian GNU/Linux
  • Applies to both statically and dynamically linked builds

What this bug IS related to:

  • your locale being set to hr_HR[.UTF-8]
  • probably setting LC_NUMERIC to hr_HR[.UTF-8] is sufficient

What this bug is NOT related to:

  • scim-qtimm – similar bug was occuring few years ago to users who had scim-qtimm installed under Ubuntu 6.06
  • your Opera GUI language

Backspace on Firefox on Ubuntu and Iceweasel on Debian

A friend pointed this out to me:

In short, if you’re a GNU/Linux user of Firefox (e.g. Firefox on Ubuntu and Iceweasel on Debian) you may want to get backspace to actually go back one page, like many browsers do (did?):

  1. In addressbar, type about:config
  2. If asked, confirm you want to change settings
  3. In search, type browser.backspace_action
  4. Set the value of browser.backspace_action to 0 (that is zero, not letter O) Zero is Windows default and makes pressing backspace go back in history; One is old Linux default and scrolls page up; Two is new Linux default and, like any other integer, simply unmaps the backspace key.

Now, enjoy pressing backspace to go back!

Image source