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While updating 13.04 Raring Ringtail on a fresh installation my system froze. On reboot I am unable to log in on the graphical screen. CTRL-ALT-F2 takes me to the command line where the login works correctly. I then completed the "sudo passwd" process with positive results. On returning to the graphical screen I saw no change in accessing the account. I suspect something was corrupted during the crash. I'm too new at UBUNTU to know where to look, much less what to do in order to straighten out whatever was broken.

All advice, step by step instruction, etc. much appreciated. My fall back is to reinstall the OS from scratch as it's a new system. Which is more efficient, fix or reinstall? Thanks.

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Please add some information on how exactly this 'unable to login' presents itself. Does it reject the password or accept the password, but then goes black for a second and dumps you back on the login screen? In the latter case, please reproduce the error, then switch to a terminal and add the contents of ~/.xsession-errors to your post. –  drc Nov 27 '13 at 7:42
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1 Answer

This sounds like an error I've encountered before - when logged in on the console, run the following command:

sudo rm ~/.Xauthority

This fixes an issue where, for some reason I haven't discovered yet, a file used for the graphical interface becomes owned by the root user, and other users are unable to edit it.

This means your graphical login fails and you cycle back to the login form, but do so without any errors being shown.

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