I did the most recent updates as I regularly do but this time I got the black screen of death after restarting. No way I can get the system to boot even though the boot options and BIOS settings look right to me. I ran Ubuntu 12.04 from a cd and I can see the HD partitions but can't access the files because I am not the owner(owner: 1000 - user #1000). What is the best way to recover my data? What boot recovery tools are safer/easier to use? I wonder if this happens to other distros that have a reputation for more testing like Fedora or OpenSuse. Any comments would be welcome on this subject. Thanks, Pablo


One thing you can try right off the bat is to boot up your computer while holding the left SHIFT key until you get to the GRUB prompt. Then select an older Kernel version to boot using the arrow keys and enter key. You may have to choose "Advanced Options" to get to the kernel versions.

Failing that, you can try booting with Recovery Mode, also from that same Grub menu. For backing up, this answer should help you access the files on your hard drive while booted with the Live CD. How do I get root access to hard drive from livecd?

If you still cannot access your hard-drive files, they may be encrypted. Try this answer to access encrypted drives & files: How to recover encrypted home data with Live CD?

  • Thanks Michael. I did not know about the shift key while rebooting to access the grub menu. Instead I went for the live CD and looked up the internet for a remedy and used the advice in Boot-Repair. I remembered I had used the GUI version of this program when I started with Ubuntu last year and it had fixed the failed boots after installations. Now my question is how can I get rid of the GRUB screen every time a start the computer? I want to run the latest Linux kernel version as deployed by Ubuntu through the updates. Thanks – Pablo Adames Dec 5 '13 at 7:16
  • I thought the Grub screen would go back to normal by itself... but if not, you can edit Grub configuration by following information in this answer askubuntu.com/questions/100232/… – Michael Butler Dec 5 '13 at 20:05
  • Michael. Thanks again. Grub Customizer worked very well. There is an option under General Settings/ Visibility called "Look for other operating systems". Since I only run Ubuntu I disabled it and its companion option "Show menu" and there you have it, the grub menu does not show when I boot my machine. I also found options for hiding previous OS versions or prioritizing which one appears first on the list and an option for how many seconds you want the Grub screen to show before selecting the default OS if more than one is installed. I could use this customization for other boxes. – Pablo Adames Dec 10 '13 at 4:04
  • Glad to hear that Pablo. If you think this provided good information, you may click the green "Checkmark" icon in the top left corner of the answer on this page. – Michael Butler Dec 11 '13 at 1:40

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