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
- Hit ctrl+alt+f1 to switch to console.
sudo -i to become root.
- Now let’s fix the relevant files:
sed 's/Driver.*"vesa"/Driver "fbdev"/' xorg.conf.failsafe > xorg.conf
- Restart X11 et al:
service lightdm restart
- 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.
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!
Your X.org misbehaves? You don’t like what’s done in Ubuntu? To forcibly restart Xorg, you have two options:
Option “DontZap” “false”
or use RightAlt+PrintScreen+K.
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?):
- In addressbar, type about:config
- If asked, confirm you want to change settings
- In search, type browser.backspace_action
- 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!