[ALUG] Strange PC lock-up

Phil Thane phil at pthane.co.uk
Wed Mar 29 09:57:12 BST 2017

I've been lurking and following this because I have had a lock-up too. Not the 
same though so I decided to stick my head up and post...

A few days ago I came to my desktop PC (Linux Mint 18.1, KDE version) and 
found the screen black. Power lights on and case fans running but no response 
to KB or mouse. I hadn't used it for several hours and can't remember what I 
did last but it being bed time I hit the power switch.

Next day it booted OK and various apps left open were restored and worked, but 
KDE kept popping up warnings about being unable to write to config files, I 
should have made a note, but didn't. I assumed it was the incorrect shutdown 
the previous evening had corrupted something, so did an orderly shut down and 

Back to Black, nothing on screen at all.

Rebooted with a live distro in USB port and it worked OK, so not hardware 

Rebooted and this time chose recovery mode. Nothing in the ASH menu seemed 
helpful so finally I ran FSCK and accepted all the suggestions. Success.

But, a few days later, back to black. This time I do know what I did last. 
That morning the desktop seemed sluggish. It hadn't been shutdown for a while, 
I've got in the habit of using Suspend because I use the machine irregularly 
and it's handy having it come to life when I want it. So I set it to reboot 
while I went for lunch. And didn't go back until after dinner, about 8 hours 
later. It should have been sat at the login screen, but clearly wasn't.

This time hit Reset rather than Power. When it came back up I got a simple 
terminal screen telling me the previous desktop session hadn't shutdown 
properly and advising I switch to another terminal and run <loginctl unlock-
sessions>. That seems to have worked OK.

Does anyone know if this odd behaviour stems from me using Suspend? Haven't 
dared since, it's either on or shutdown now!

Phil Thane

phil at pthane.co.uk
01767 449759
07582 750607
Twitter @pthane
On Wednesday, 29 March 2017 08:56:21 BST Mark Rogers wrote:
> On 23 March 2017 at 09:51, Mark Rogers <mark at more-solutions.co.uk> wrote:
> > So it's definitely something I'll check out if it fails
> > again (it didn't fail overnight, but that means nothing).
> It's the best part of a week since that last comment, and I've been
> out of the office for most of it. I came back in today and the PC was
> still running fine.
> I'll update if I see the problem again but for the sake of the
> archives it otherwise looks like in this case it was the nouveau
> driver causing the issue, and replacing it with the nVidia proprietary
> driver has fixed it.

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