I recently upgraded my eeepc 1000HA to Karmic Koala (9.10) and now I can't use the desktop. It boots fine and lets me login fine. It even uses the pretty new GUI to do all that.

But when I get to the desktop, I just see the wallpaper. Nothing else. No menu bar at the top of the screen. Nothing at the bottom of the screen. I can't launch any apps, or even shut the system down without hitting the power button. If I right click on the desktop, I can create a folder and thus gain access to the file system. But apart from that, the system is more or less useless.

I thought I could edit the xorg.conf file, but there is none.

I'm a linux newbie and completely stuck.

I've googled this without success and I've tried the Ubuntu forums without any help either.

Can anyone here help me get control of my computer again?


Try this (it will reset gnome's and most gnome app's settings):

  1. start your machine (but do not log in)
  2. Ctrl+Alt+F1
  3. login
  4. mv .gconf .gconf.corrupted
  5. mv .gconfd .gconfd.corrupted
  6. Ctrl-Alt-F7
  7. login
  8. hope that it got fixed

NEVER use a command given to you before knowing exactly what it does.

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  • 1
    This worked perfectly. Thank you. Very happy now :) – nedlud Nov 7 '09 at 5:34

Press Alt+F2 and type gnome-panel.

You should see the panel appearing on your desktop.

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  • I had this happen to me when I upgraded to .. err ... I think 8.10. Alt-F2 doesn't work in this case. – innaM Nov 6 '09 at 11:16
  • try running this command from a terminal instead? – Mahmoud Hossam Nov 6 '09 at 15:32

Weird solution, but I had the same and it seemed that my resolution was set way to high. So I managed to reset the resolution by guessing where the menu was on the top left. ;)

You can also go to terminal and reconfiguge xwindows to use a different resolution. This was on an older TFT panel I use in my serverroom...

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  • So then actually you were seeing part of the wallpaper? Nice debugging! :-) – Arjan Nov 6 '09 at 12:08
  • Yeah, somehow it centered... The monitor (1024x768) was very old and dit not auto setup as the new ones do.... :) – Pit Nov 9 '09 at 11:07

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