So, I mounted Kali Linux Light iso image on my usb stick and ran it Live. Eveything was fine. When I finished, I shut down the Kali and unplugged my usb. Then I turned back on my PC and my screen started flashing before login screen.
I'm getting this message:

/dev/sda1: recovering journal
/dev/sda1: clean 221608/30269440 files, 4431756/121048320 blocks
[  OK  ] Starting Anonymizing overlay network for TCP.
[  OK  ] Created slice User Slice for gdm.
         Starting User Manager for UID 121...
[  OK  ] Started Session c1 of user gdm.
[  OK  ] Started User Manager for UID 121.
         Stopping User Manager for UID 121...

I'm not sure if this is connected somehow.

I tried this (but it didn't help):

  1. Checked BIOS settings
  2. Reinstalled GRUB using my installation USB (I ran a live version with it, here's the report - http://paste2.org/78CUHf9H )
  3. Scanned for issues in recovery mode

I can hit CTRL+ALT+F1 while my screen is flashing, but every 4 seconds my monitor flashes again with this error message ^^ so I need to hit those buttons again to access the terminal again, it's really annoying.

  • Do you have NVIDIA/AMD graphics? Sep 18, 2016 at 17:34
  • CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 Quad Core 3,40GHz GPU: ASUS Nvidia GeForce GTX650 1GB
    – ramseyy
    Sep 18, 2016 at 17:36
  • Did you install the proprietary driver for the NVIDIA card? Sep 18, 2016 at 17:37
  • Yes, it was working fine. I had some trouble at first place because I needed to blacklist nouveau, but I did that right and it installed correctly.
    – ramseyy
    Sep 18, 2016 at 17:39
  • OK. It's possible either Xorg got messed up or the NVIDIA driver. Since I don't know which version of the NVIDIA driver you installed, or how you did it, I can't really tell you how to purge it, but get into recovery, uninstall the video driver, and purge/reinstall apt-get purge xserver-xorg. Sep 18, 2016 at 17:41

3 Answers 3


I would normally refer you to my Q&A on NVIDIA issues, but that involves using TTYs, which won't work for you, at least right away.

Boot into Recovery Mode, drop to a root shell, and follow the steps below:

  1. Run mount -o rw,remount / to mount the drive in Read-Write mode.
  2. Run sudo apt-get purge nvidia-* to purge the NVIDIA driver.
    • You may also need to purge xserver-xorg and reinstall it, which will require you to enable networking in Recovery.
  3. Reboot. You may have to add the nouveau.modeset=0 flag in GRUB to boot properly (Check my Q&A for specifics).

You should be past the screen flicker and be at your desktop.

  1. Now reinstall the NVIDIA drivers the proper way:
    • sudo apt-get install nvidia-367 (or 340, 352, 364, 370, whichever works).
  2. Reboot again.

You should be up and running: good as before. I don't see how Kali could have done this, but if you messed around with your filesystem, then it's definitely possible.

  • 2
    I keep re-running into this issue on Step 4. Everytime I am installing nvidia drivers via the commandline. But all of them seem to cause this issue?
    – Alkarin
    Jul 9, 2017 at 5:14
  • It works for me, but I'm curious de know why 90% of my Ubuntu issues come from Nvidia? How can I avoid this for future upgrade?
    – Opsse
    Jun 21, 2018 at 10:08
  • Note: the newest Nvidia drivers are now under the name nvidia-driver-XXX, where "XXX" is the driver version. So if you're upgrading your driver to 430, then it would be sudo apt install nvidia-driver-430.
    – chimbo
    Sep 28, 2019 at 18:08

I had the same problem. When examining the logs in /var/log it was kindof obvious, that the issue was because of gdm3. Since lighdm never works for me I had to find a completely different display manager. It worked for me with SLiM, bit i did not try any other dm yet. I'm probably just going to install some flat theme for it and keep it.


sudo apt-get install slim 

i managed to get into tty2 (Strg+Alt+F2) and do this. But if this doesn't work for you, you can also enter a console in the advanced boot options on startup.


(Nvidia & Ubuntu 16.10)


I had the same problem, SLiM did not help at all, so I reverted everything like this:

  1. Boot from live CD

  2. Mount my Harddisk with chroot as described here under Update Failure: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/LiveCdRecovery including writing the resolv.conf entry

  3. Navigated to my Downloads folder where the Nvidia driver was and did an uninstall with: cuda-repo-ubuntu1604-9-0-local_9.0.176-1_amd64.deb --uninstall

  4. Deleted /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist-nouveau.conf and regenerate kernel: sudo update-initramfs -u

  5. Edit grub to boot into text console

  6. Reboot into harddrive

  7. login to command line

  8. sudo apt-get install nvidia

  9. reboot

  10. Finally back in the graphical system, took the whole night, hope this helps someone doing the same s**t.

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