I did a clean install of Ubuntu 12.04 on an Acer AX1430G desktop. Everything went fine until I installed the additional ATI driver.

When I rebooted the computer, my monitor gives a "signal out of range" error because I believe the video is being detected at a higher resolution than the monitor supports. How can I force Ubuntu to start up in a lower resolution so that I can adjust display properties. I've already tried editing the /etc/default/grub and un-commenting #GRUB_GFXMODE=640x480 line. I know in Windows, you can press F8 on boot to go into a safe video mode so I'm looking for the equivalent in Ubuntu.


To start Ubuntu into safe mode (Recovery Mode) hold down the left Shift key as the computer starts to boot. If holding the Shift key doesn't display the menu press the Esc key repeatedly to display the GRUB 2 menu. From there you can choose the recovery option.

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  • Thanks for the response. I'm not sure if I'm missing something or what, but I can't seem to catch the boot up process at the right time with either the shift or escape keys. I never get a boot menu. Not sure what I could be missing. – Jeff Aug 6 '12 at 2:57
  • Pressing <kbd>Esc</kbd> helped to recover 15.04 grub screen, thanks. – anatoly techtonik Aug 20 '15 at 8:16
  • ESC worked for me – Pratik Jamariya Nov 3 '17 at 4:19

On 12.10 the Tab key works for me.

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I got it to work by pushing the SHIFT & ESC keys, but it didn't seem to work until the second boot load screen that comes after the screen where you have the option to press f12, DEL etc.

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