LinuxMint: Fix blank screen at startup with mouse cursor showing

When my LinuxMint desktop froze up, I thought nothing of it and hit the reset button. After booting up, I had a strange issue with it not responding after login. All it displayed was a black screen and my cursor.

A few other people had the same issue and there weren't any clear indicators to why this happened.

I pressed CTRL+ALT+F1 to get into the terminal. The following attempts didn't work.

  • A few search results told me to install gnome shell so I could get back into the login screen, which allows you to select which X server to use. Didn't work.
  • Another told me to run cinnamon-session or startx to kickstart it. Didn't work.
  • Another told me to uninstall cinnamon and reinstall it. It worked, I got back in but then on the next reboot it didn't work.

During my ventures on the session that was working, by chance I noticed something unusual. I was low on disk space. I've run out of it actually.

The fix? Surprisingly easy

I poked around the trash folder and found it was brimming with files. Over a hundred gigabytes of rubbish! After wiping it clear via the terminal, I rebooted and haven't had any issues since.

It's a damn shame Linux has to crash and burn so hard because things like this could have been avoided if I had been given a little notification regarding my remaining space when it was running low.

Crashing and burning because of a little mistake...


Pages I resorted to but weren't overly helpful to me, but maybe they'll help you.

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