While installing ubuntu 16.04

I am getting:

Failed to create sharedmemoryfile /WK2SharedMemory.34567654: Permission denied

from the ubuntu installer at the stage of restoring previously installed packages.

  • The installer...I'm not in the terminal and can't see what command is doing that. Where is the installer log file?
    – tread
    Commented Apr 24, 2016 at 16:46
  • 1
    Managed to sort this with selecting use 3rd party non-free stuff and I said Install alongside other OSes.
    – tread
    Commented Apr 27, 2016 at 10:17
  • I have that too, when choosing to reinstall Ubuntu, so install alongside doesn't work for me
    – misiu_mp
    Commented Apr 28, 2016 at 14:04
  • How dis you resolve this issue? I am having this too 😢😢
    – pokeymond
    Commented Jun 3, 2016 at 14:39
  • 1
    I just ran into this issue with 16.04.1, it happes when you reinstall without formatting the partition, where the Ubiquity Installer tries to restore the previously installed packages, during that stage Webkit seems to act up (bugs.webkit.org/show_bug.cgi?id=134892). I switched to a terminal and killed the Webkit process that consumed 100% CPU, the installation now continues with a lot of messages from the packages it tries to reinstall some of them look like permission errors, I'm not sure if these are sort of intended. I did almost the same on an external cloned drive b4 w/o issues
    – LiveWireBT
    Commented Jul 28, 2016 at 7:58

1 Answer 1


As I wrote before in a comment: this happens when you reinstall without formatting the root partition (or partitions where the packages are stored e.g. /usr if you do such a thing). Ubiquity Installer tries to restore the previously installed packages and during that stage Webkit seems to act up. If you open a terminal and run top you will find a WebKitWebProcess consuming 100% CPU, kill it with killall WebKitWebProcess and the installation will continue. You may not be able to spawn a terminal when it already happened, instead switch to a virtual terminal with Ctrl+Alt+F1 login as user ubuntu with an empty password and kill the process there, be patient, it might take some time to perform this, then switch back to the GUI Ctrl+Alt+F7 and wait for the installation to continue and complete.

I filed a bug on Launchpad for this after some testing: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/ubiquity/+bug/1607779

If all of this doesn't work for you and you can't get Ubuntu installed without formatting the partition, then make a list of installed packages (dpkg -l with minimal scripting and review of the output can do this for you) and compare modifications you made to /etc and other directories. This is another reason to make backups: compare what previously had after a fresh install.

  • 2
    To switch back to the GUI it's Ctrl+Alt+F7. Commented Aug 5, 2016 at 5:02

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