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I have this odd occurence with my laptop. Whenever I shut down o restart Ubuntu, after it shows the screen with the loading bar that moves backward I see a white-ish screen that is mostly lines and screen distortion. It shuts down after a moment, and Ubuntu doesn't complain when I start it back up, but I'm worried that it may damage the screen. Has anyone else experienced this, and are there any ideas on how to fix it?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

This is perfectly safe.

What you're seeing is your video driver being switched into a new video mode without it's memory being flushed.

I've had it on my laptop since 7.04 and it's been rock-solid. It's possible to get Windows to do the same thing if the screen mode changes unexpectedly. I'm not sure why it occurs on laptops and not desktops - perhaps because there is only one driver for nvidias, it's doing something that only works on desktop machines?

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I get this on my HP dv9000 as well. I have an nVidia GPU, by any chance are yours nVidia as well? If so, then my suspicion is that it's something to do with the driver.

I have a netbook with an Intel GPU, and it does not do this.

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nVidia 9500M. I think it may be the driver, because 8.10 didn't do it and when I updated to 9.04 there was a driver update as well. I may try rolling back the driver at some point. – Annath Sep 3 '09 at 22:55
Well, I tried rolling back the driver and it didn't help. – Annath Sep 4 '09 at 0:26

I get the same issue with Ubuntu 9.0.4 on my Dell XPS 1330 laptop. The system shuts down normally but before the system actually reboots the screen goes black and then slowly comes up with bunch of tiny mutli-colored lines across the whole screen, similar to a test pattern, then fades back to black then it finally reboots.

The system seems to be completely shutdown as nothing responds and even the fan has stopped spinning. If I hold the power button down it forces the system to reboot but still doesn't cause a unclean shutdown error.

I haven't found any way to fix it but as you say it hasn't caused any real trouble other then having to wait longer for reboots/shutdowns.

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i got the same on my MSI GX620, it should not harm your screen but it is not nice. To get rid of it edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and remove the splash keyword and reboot. The white screen is gone than.

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