I installed Ubuntu today and since the first start up I have a problem with the mouse cursor.

It starts randomly disappearing and flickering a lot.

I have searched for a solution on Google and here but didn't find anything.

  • Welcome! How is your mouse connected (USB maybe)? Try with another mouse device and see what happens. Also you may try plugging into another port – Lucio Oct 17 '13 at 19:04
  • Its happening in 14.04 as well and this trick saved my time. – Nagendhiran Apr 13 '14 at 3:33
  • if you are having flickering in chrome only , try this answer, adding one section to the 20-intel.conf file fixed my issues with flicker in chrome. askubuntu.com/questions/766725/… – Brandon Søren Culley May 18 '18 at 15:19

I had the same problem. You can fix it manually. Open System Settings > Displays. In the Displays window, you will see an Unknown monitor. Click it and disable it.

  • 2
    And to remove that screen you can follow this: askubuntu.com/a/365017/34385 – Jeggy Oct 25 '13 at 8:23
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    Great! How did you figure out?? – sobi3ch Oct 28 '13 at 11:43
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    There is no unknown display for me. But I can see 2 built in display in red and green color. I tried disabling one of those alternatively but that also didn't solved my issue. Please help – Vishal Vijay Nov 22 '13 at 5:16
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    Ho sorry... Disabling the green built in display solved the issue. Thanks – Vishal Vijay Nov 22 '13 at 5:24
  • This didn't work in my case (I had no "Unknown Monitor"). I have posted a question here but given that the OP is a superset of my question I think this answer should provide other possible solutions (or at least avenues to investigate). – quant Nov 23 '14 at 21:09

I ran, from within 16.04, the command:

  sudo apt-get upgrade

and it seems to have appeased the pointer, so far. I had instability, especially over the Chrome browser tabs.


Possible cause 1:

Screen settings: resolution and refresh rate. Can be checked (On KDE) under systemsettings5 then display and monitor

Possible cause 2:

Screen compositor: it could be caused by the sale-method/rendering-backend/tearing-prevention those settings can be changed (On KDE) under systemsettings5, display and monitor then compositor... apply new settings and compare

Possible cause 3:

Display server mis-configuration: you can regenerate the display server config file with X -configure or similar but first make a copy of /etc/X11

Possible cause 4:

System failure, crash, reboot: on system failure especially for systems equipped with SSD you may loose important files; Files under directories like /home/user/, /etc/ or /usr/ can cause serious damages, as these directories contain important settings/packages files for different aspect of the desktop. usually when a file is lost after a crash, the file may be completely deleted or zeroed, you can then search for file with zero size and check out if important file are corrupted with the command find /etc -size 0 -print (this is for /etc) you can also check packages integrity for missing/modified file, on rpm based system it's done with the command rpm -Va you would then reinstall the broken package.

A common situation in this case is loosing the file /etc/X11/xorg.conf or one of the config file under /etc/X11/ responsible for the display server; If recovering the file is not possible the config can be regenerated with X -configure or similar command

Possible cause 5:

Mis-configuration of user files under /home/user... you can verify this by login with an other user... to fix it eventually delete and recreate the user (after backup)

Possible cause 7:

Graphic drivers, you need to check if you are using the proper graphic driver and or try a different version of the used driver, usually this often happen with nvidia graphical cards.


The listed situations are not the only possibilities of failure.

protected by Community Oct 19 '13 at 16:16

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