I have installed Ubuntu 19.10 on an system with a radeon graphics card. It worked fine the first time I booted it up, but every time after that I just get a black screen after entering my password. I tried nomodeset in grub, but that doesn't seem to help. Trying to log into a wayland session just freezes on a purple screen instead of a black one. I can press ctrl-alt-F2 to get into a terminal from the log in screen, so I'm not completely locked out of the system.

What should I do to get things back up and running?

If it helps, I installed the /home folder on its own partition, so I could reinstall without losing everything.


With Radeon graphics, black screen can be caused by video driver incompatibilities. Fortunately there are alternative choices for drivers. If you have the open source driver installed, you can try the proprietary driver (called fglrx). If you have the proprietary driver installed, you can sometimes try a newer or older version. If you're really stumped, then identify your radeon model number and do some googling to see which specific drivers and driver versions to use.

This link is a bit dated for 19.10 but the information may get you on the right path:


  • My system (though with Nvidia card) showed erratical boot behaviour, froze every other time at the mentioned black-screen after 19.10 upgrade. I found that the upgrade re-inserted the nouveau graphics drivers which caused this problem. Reinstalling Nvidia proprietary drivers solved the problem. Might help who got on this thread looking for solutions with similar problems. – dr mat Nov 24 '19 at 10:13

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