Ubuntu Server 11.10 black screen no video after install

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

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After installing Ubuntu Server 11.10 x64 on a freshly built server, after the eject disc and press Enter to reboot option, the system reboots, goes through grub, then shows a black screen, then shows nothing but a blank / black screen.

Thinking it was locked up at first, I decided to try my luck with a CTRL-ALT-DEL (control alt delete), and was greeted with the system rebooting, posting, going through grub, then black screen again. I first thought it was an issue of needing to use the new GRUB_GFXPAYLOAD_LINUX=KEEP, but I decided to google it, and found the post that my post title links to, and it suggested adding the nomodeset kernel option. I'm not sure if the other option might have worked as well, and if it is/would be a better solution... I didn't need to try it as the nomodeset option worked, and its very similar in how to go about fixing it anyways (editing the grub config).

Following the linked to poster's description (a good description for newbies) of what to edit in Grub didn't quite match the new grub menu / editing selection of Ubuntu 11.10 during bootup (I didn't see splash or quiet options that he mentioned in this new interface / menu), but I simply added the nomodeset to the end of the line that loads the kernel and its options.

After successfully booting, edit /etc/defaults/grub and add nomodeset to the following option in grubs config file for future boots:

sudo pico /etc/defaults/grub

GRUB_DEFAULT=0
#GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT=0
GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT_QUIET=true
GRUB_TIMEOUT=2
GRUB_DISTRIBUTOR=`lsb_release -i -s 2> /dev/null || echo Debian`
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="nomodeset"
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="vga=0x319"

then run "sudo update-grub"

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