I recently installed Ubuntu 14.04. Shutdown and logout from the top panel are not working.

They worked fine when installing the OS, but a few days back I installed fglrx drivers for my ATI graphics card. They didn't work and I got low resolution problems and Ubuntu didn't boot. I solved it by removing the fglrx graphic driver from the recovery mode and Ubuntu started to boot and work just fine, at least that's what I thought.

But now the shutdown and logout options in the top panel don't work. I have to logout using ctrl+alt+delete and shutdown with the shutdown option in the top panel (shutdown option works after logging out but not when logged in as a user).

I re-installed Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and shutdown options worked fine but after installing updates they stopped working again. I thought its the graphic driver fglrx installation problem but now i know its not that. I think its a problem with some file that got installed from Ubuntu updates.
Does any one know how to solve it?

  • 3
    Do you use Cairo Dock? There is bug related to shutdown dialog. May 4, 2014 at 7:46
  • 1
    yes i use Cairo Dock
    – Sudheer
    May 4, 2014 at 10:38
  • 2
    Cairo dock is the problem now the options are working fine thanks to you Xeranas
    – Sudheer
    May 4, 2014 at 10:46
  • as stated in the bug report, this is also triggered by other docks, like Plank, in fact by any application which is registered to LauncherEntry interface of Unity DBus and is started before Unity
    – user47206
    Dec 4, 2014 at 19:48

6 Answers 6


No need to remove cairo-dock from start-up applications.

Use one of the these solutions:

  • Find cairo-dock.desktop file ~/.config/autostart and add this code,X-GNOME-Autostart-Delay=20

Steps to solve easily (tested in Ubuntu 14.04)

  1. Run gedit without root
  2. Click open file menu and press Ctrl+H
  3. Open file ~/.config/autostart/cairo-dock.desktop
  4. Add this

  5. Save and close

  6. Reboot your unity/gnome

Delay time more than 20 works fine.


  • Select cairo-dock startup application from startup application and change command option to:

    sh -c "sleep 30; exec cairo-dock -o"

    source here and here


  • Create a script called startdock, with the text

    #! /bin/sh -e
    sleep 20
    exit 0

    Make it executable, and in the startup items add a new command with path to this script.

This is a bug as indicated in a comment. The bug report states that

Unity's shutdown/restart dialogue is not working when another application is registered to LauncherEntry interface of Unity DBus. It seems we have this bug when Cairo-Dock (and its Launcher-API-Deamon), DockbarX or Plank are launched before Unity.

To solve the same problem with Plank dock, replace cairo-dock with plank in one of the above solutions. The same for other applications.

  • @cipricus I have posted an answer which eliminates the 20 second delay for the opening of Cairo Dock on startup which occurs by this method. Dec 5, 2014 at 4:04

This method is better than the others since the problem is solved and Cairo Dock starts with almost no delay.

Edit /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/cairo-dock/cairo-dock-launcher-API-daemon as root.

Add the following line at line 33:

from time import sleep

and the following line at line 241 (just before ULWatcher()):


Then, restart the session.

If you're using a 32bit version of Ubuntu, the file will probably be in -


This solution has been taken from the Launchpad Bug Page.

  • 1
    Great, but I do not know whether it's better; the 15 secs difference may or may not be more important than the fact that this is a bit more difficult to implement than the other solutions; also, it looks limited to cairo-dock as far as I can see, while the bug is not. The other solutions can easily be adjusted to fix other docks. I use Plank myself and cannot test this now. Can it be adjusted for other docks? - While the above bounty will be granted to the other answer, I do not mind granting a second :)
    – user47206
    Dec 5, 2014 at 7:56
  • I use Cairo and after trying all the methods to solve the problem, I felt that this was the best solution. Dec 5, 2014 at 10:35
  • as seen in the bug report linked in other answer and comment, this is caused not only by Cairo Dock. I only wanted to point out that while for the author of the question as well as for you the problem is solved by adjusting cairo's startup, it is not solved in all cases in this way. asking a new question about plank would be a duplicate of this one, because it is the same problem, and needs (and has, in the other answer) the same solution. on the other hand, it might be possible for your solution to be transposed for Plank, but I do not know how
    – user47206
    Dec 5, 2014 at 10:40
  • Ok.I didn't know that Plank has the same bug. Thanks for letting me know. I will try to modify this solution so that it works with Plank also. Dec 5, 2014 at 10:48
  • Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't Plank the default dock on Elementary OS? Dec 5, 2014 at 10:52

Shutdown using power menu

You can shutdown your system alternatively. Press Power Button and it should display menu with options to choose from:

  • Lock
  • Suspend
  • Reboot
  • Shutdown

Choose shutdown. It will work.

Power menu Screenshot

Shutdown using terminal

  1. Press CTRL+ALT+T
  2. Type: sudo shutdown -h now
  3. Press Enter
  4. Enter your password if needed
  5. Press Enter again

You're done.


I too have faced this problem and now the problem is solved. So, here I am going to share my experiences: First use shortcut key Alt+Ctl+L and lock your Ubuntu and then from the top right corner click on the setting button and then click on switch user. Then, Click on the setting button and then click on shutdown. Start your computer again. Now you can easily shutdown from the top panel.

Hope you will get your problem solved. Thanks !

  • Thank you for your reply, i reinstalled my OS few hours back now its working fine
    – Sudheer
    Apr 25, 2014 at 17:04

try this

sudo -i
gedit /etc/default/grub

find the line


and change it to

GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash acpi=force"

save the file and close it.

now run


now i think your problem solved.

  • I added the 'acpi=force' after quiet splash and rebooted but that didn't work, still the options(shutdown and logout) in top panel are not working
    – Sudheer
    Apr 20, 2014 at 17:00
  • this did not worked for me !
    – Alex Jones
    Nov 11, 2014 at 9:13

Removing Cairo-dock from the startup applications solved my problem its due to a bug as commented by Xeranas

  • you should mark this answer as best
    – user47206
    Dec 4, 2014 at 19:33

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