This all occurred after I (1) Built/installed Ardour 3.3 (2) Used the automatic updater to install suggested updates and (3) Installed wine, tried to open the configuration file, everything stopped responding, and I shut the computer down.
I was then met with a black screen with a command line (tty1). So I installed ubuntu-desktop, which loaded the login screen but then wouldn't load the actual desktop (it would just revert to login). THEN I installed gdm, which loaded the desktop but then brought annoying pop-up messages of "system problem detected" etc. Now I'm trying to install kubuntu-desktop with hopes that it will be different, but if I'm wrong in my solution, please correct me.
My windows have white lines around the edges that change size, leading me to think there's some problem with the X system (when I used autoremove after installing all the necessary packages for Ardour, a lot of x packages were uninstalled). Also, the display doesn't seem quite aligned...it's just a tad too big, so the edges of my web browser or applications often get cut off (i.e., I have to read from the second or third letter of a word if it's at the edge). It's not so much that I want the kubuntu-desktop, JUST that whatever desktop I have works smoothly.
I took out my NVIDIA graphics card so I didn't have to deal with more on top of it. So now, I'm just running my basic desktop with an i5, 4 GB DDR3 memory, and a TB hard drive.