I'm running a variant of Ubuntu called Xubuntu, and it has been going fine the last couple of days. But now, every time I boot, shortly after the process completes, the hard disk activity is fully on, and the system appears to be super unresponsive. Caps lock/Num lock keys do not respond. Mouse unresponsive. Can't do anything but wait. Nothing works.

Tried systemrescuecd and used the fsck utility on my hard-drive. Nothing.

Tried to use the recovery console and used the clean, dpkg and grub commands. Nothing.

If anyone can help me fix this, it would be a good help. I have a terminal window open when it boots up before the system goes full crazy with the hard drive, so that could be a help.

  • Possible causes: thrashing, ie. your system reaches a out-of-memory condition and it has to temporarily write memory to disk to create some free memory, thus disk light will be on & system becomes super-slow as it's 'thrashing'. You didn't tell us how much RAM you have, what you're doing so i have no idea if this occurs (unlikely on a just-booted system, and I tested Xubuntu on machines with 1gb of ram). Second thought is you have tons of pictures, and the system is indexing them (ie. creating thumbnail pictures for your file manager thunar). Do you have loads of pictures on your disk? – guiverc May 8 at 13:34
  • Sorry about the delay, but mine is 2GB of RAM. It also now boots into a black screen with a weird "X" cursor that normally occurs when you use xkill. So now I have two problems in one. Is there any way to fix this problem? The only way out is power-cycling, either by physically pulling the plug, or holding the power button until the computer turns off and turning it back on again – – SuperEmbracer 2 days ago
  • So, my plan is to fix the thrashing problem, and then the black screen with weird cursor on bootup. Is there any way to do this through a recovery console? Because it doesn't happen on the console. I don't have anything important on this PC, but it's still really irritating. – SuperEmbracer 2 days ago
  • Power cycling should not be your only way out - have you tried 'magic' sysrq keys; they are recognized by the linux kernel & obeyed and allow a safe shutdown that protects data. You don't describe a frozen system, so they should work. If you don't remember the keys; use another device to quickly search & refresh yourself (wikipedia etc; and why I used the magic in my first reference). If power-down is your only option - you have other problems beyond thrashing. Halting power creates other filesystem problems because of unclean shutdowns that need fixing first before you can re-use system. – guiverc 2 days ago

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