After logging in to my account, I see no panels or anything else, only the background. I cannot even start a terminal with ctrl+alt+t. The only thing the system responds to is ctrl+alt+delete which shows the system monitor (without the top panel) or ctrl+alt+F1 to login by hand. However logging in to the guest session works fine.

When logging in by hand I cannot restart unity (unity --replace), this gives me:

unknown job: unity-panel-service

Without the graphics display open I cannot reset compiz and unity to default settings. Searching other questions I tried to move the .Xauthority in ~/ to some other place. Did not work. I also tried the sudo apt-get install --reinstall ubuntu-desktop and sudo apt-get install --reinstall unity +rebooting. Also tried to reinstall lightdm. Nothing works.

I've been running on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS just fine for quite some time and haven't recently done any changes besides installing updates.

So I finally managed to recover by doing the following

mv ~/.config/dconf/user ~/.config/dconf/user.old

This makes me loose all my settings, but at least I can log in and now I can attempt at recovering at least some of the settings from the user.old file.

  • 1
    This was exactly what I needed, thank you. – scicalculator Oct 28 '14 at 0:47
  • 1
    The solution is so simple, yet so strange :) Exactly what I was looking for, although I tried 50 other things – Vladimir Nov 13 '14 at 15:11
  • Unfortunately this file is a binary file, so there's no way to restore single values from it. However, it brought me back the desktop after deleting it. – David Feb 9 '16 at 10:44
  • I thought I have to reinstall ubuntu again.. huge thanks – Shih-Min Lee Mar 23 '17 at 3:15

protected by Community Dec 24 '14 at 6:31

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.