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sometimes gdm lists no users

asked 2014-02-17 13:38:00 -0600

Emmanuel Touzery gravatar image

updated 2014-09-12 19:09:45 -0600

mether gravatar image

I'm using fedora 20. Since a few upgrades ago, sometimes after boot gdm will not display any users and so log in is impossible. If I go in a text terminal with ctrl-alt-f2 and log in, then run sudo killall gdm, gdm restarts and does show my single user so that i can login.

I have opened this bug related to this, but no reaction so far: https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=1065687

EDIT: sadly yum reinstall didn't help. I hoped a bit after the first reboot helped, but now the problem happened again. Also, this is just a plain user as created by the fedora installer, local user, nothing special, all standard.

And here is the output of sudo journalctl -u gdm (otherwise the log is superlong, I'm using this installation for a long time, this is a F18 upgraded to F19 upgraded to F20...).

I think this is a boot where everything went OK:

-- Reboot --
Feb 17 21:50:00 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Starting GNOME Display Manager...
Feb 17 21:50:01 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Started GNOME Display Manager.
Feb 17 21:50:07 emmanuel-linux gdm[666]: Failed to give slave programs access to the display. Trying to proceed.
Feb 17 21:50:36 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Stopping GNOME Display Manager...
Feb 17 21:50:37 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Stopped GNOME Display Manager.

And in this case there was a problem:

-- Reboot --
Feb 19 07:49:39 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Starting GNOME Display Manager...
Feb 19 07:49:40 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Started GNOME Display Manager.
Feb 19 07:49:47 emmanuel-linux gdm[675]: Failed to give slave programs access to the display. Trying to proceed.
Feb 19 07:50:21 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: gdm.service holdoff time over, scheduling restart.
Feb 19 07:50:21 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Stopping GNOME Display Manager...
Feb 19 07:50:21 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Starting GNOME Display Manager...
Feb 19 07:50:21 emmanuel-linux systemd[1]: Started GNOME Display Manager.
Feb 19 07:50:21 emmanuel-linux gdm[1741]: Failed to give slave programs access to the display. Trying to proceed.
Feb 19 07:50:34 emmanuel-linux gdm[1741]: Failed to remove slave program access to the display. Trying to proceed.

But probably the difference is only because I restarted gdm with the killall.

In var/log/gdm, the only files which have been recently updated are :0.log and :0.log.1 and this is the X11 log, I see nothing interesting there.

_EDIT:_ well i'm currently installing the f20 upgrade which has this fix inside: https://lists.fedoraproject.org/pipermail/scm-commits/Week-of-Mon-20140210/1189685.html

So I'm kind of hoping the issue could be related and fixed by this problem. I have those hangs currently in maybe 20% of the boots.

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Welcome. You have to know that the "sometimes" situation is very difficult to be fixed. Either in a bug report or/and a question. If the problem was persistent and reproducible, then it would be much, much better. Try to reinstall GDM sudo yum reinstall gdm and check for any differences. Also check the user ID (UID) and see if it's below 1000. If it is, then by default (I think) the GDM doesn't list such users in login screen id $USER

NickTux gravatar imageNickTux ( 2014-02-17 13:53:34 -0600 )edit

thanks. my user id is 1000. it's the typical case I guess, single user on this laptop. it's reproducible, I reboot a couple of times and I get both cases I think. I would expect there to be some log somewhere... I tried but I only find the X11 logs. I'm trying to reinstall now, I'll see if it makes any difference, thanks for the tip!

Emmanuel Touzery gravatar imageEmmanuel Touzery ( 2014-02-17 14:36:50 -0600 )edit

When I say reproducible I mean by the developers (bug report) or by us here (question). I mean, you have to provide a step by step case in which this bad behavior of GDM can be repeated. I also have one user at my Laptop (me) but GDM works as it should. Also, check any logs related to GDM inside /var/log/ directory and a sudo journalctl -u gdm could help.

NickTux gravatar imageNickTux ( 2014-02-17 15:56:06 -0600 )edit

I've only seen this when the authconfig configured login mechanism is failing. It never comes back after a restart of GDM though. For me it was caused by a dodgy network connection (the lug on the ethernet plug was missing, and the lead would come out occasionally) and if it couldn't talk to NIS, then it wouldn't show the users. It doesn't look like that's the issue here - but it might be worth checking which authentication mechanisms you're using.

cobra gravatar imagecobra ( 2014-02-18 04:10:33 -0600 )edit

3 Answers

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answered 2014-03-03 05:41:49 -0600

Emmanuel Touzery gravatar image

The problem didn't manifest itself since I applied this upgrade: https://lists.fedoraproject.org/pipermail/scm-commits/Week-of-Mon-20140210/1189685.html

So I think that was the cause. I'll remove this answer if the problem occurs again, therefore proving me wrong.

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answered 2015-01-24 22:39:16 -0600

NanoX gravatar image

I have the same problem with fedora 21. I disabled useless services (at least for me) and the service fprintd.service may have a relation with gdm. I re-enabled again and gdm show me the list users

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answered 2015-01-25 01:57:43 -0600

this post is marked as community wiki

This post is a wiki. Anyone with karma >750 is welcome to improve it.

Isn't fixes the problem, but its a excellent alternative, change to lightdm...

How to change to lighdm?

ctrl-alt-f2

login:root

password:your_pass_root

dnf -y install lightdm lightdm-gtk

systemctl disable gdm.service

systemctl enable lightdm.service

reboot
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Asked: 2014-02-17 13:38:00 -0600

Seen: 2,135 times

Last updated: Jan 25 '15