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User {D} had trouble with her laptop. Would not start... So I upgraded to 16.04 and installed a second user: {M}. During the upgrade, {M} was made the admin user and {D} was re-instated as an admin user subsequently. Now {M} can login fine. {D} can login at a console (Ctrl+Alt+F2), but cannot login to lightdm: gets a blank screen and then back to login. After having messed around deleting .Xauthority, reconfiguring lightdm, etc, etc, without success, I looked at the lightdm.log and found (somewhat editted):

Greeter start authentication for {D}
Session pid=2926: Started with service 'lightdm', username '{D}'
Session pid=2926: Got 1 message(s) from PAM
Prompt greeter with 1 message(s)
Session pid=2926: Sending SIGTERM
Session pid=2926: Terminated with signal 15
Session: Failed during authentication
Seat seat0: Session stopped

compared with:

Greeter start authentication for {M}
Session pid=3001: Started with service 'lightdm', username '{M}'
Session pid=3001: Got 1 message(s) from PAM
Prompt greeter with 1 message(s)
Continue authentication
Session pid=3001: Authentication complete with return value 0: Success
Authenticate result for user {M}: Success
User {M} authorized

And the password used is correct, because when it isn't, one gets a little red message. Obviously, there is something wrong with {D}'s setup and it was probably wrong before the upgrade, because she was already having trouble. I've been through the lightdm .conf files and there doesn't seem to be anything unusual. accountsservice is running on the system and it may be giving a bad response, but I don't know how to find/fix it. Ideas anyone ?

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    The contents of user {D}'s ~/.xsession-errors file might be helpful, as well – steeldriver May 25 '17 at 13:42
  • Possibly, but it details a crash that happened in November 2016: Script for ibus started at run_im. init: update-notifier-crash (/var/crash/susres.2016-11-09_16:55:05.673711.crash) main process (1991) terminated with status 1 init: update-notifier-crash (/var/crash/susres.2016-11-06_09:43:46.889056.crash) main process (1988) terminated with status 1 – hamiljf May 25 '17 at 22:28
  • Assuming they've been actively using their account since then, I wonder if their home dir is not where you think it is (perhaps due to a mount that's fallen off)? when you deleted their .Xauthority file, did you check its ownership / age / permissions? Did you verify that their home directory itself is writeable? – steeldriver May 26 '17 at 2:08
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    Thanks for this suggestion. I checked /home and found that the user and directory names for {D} did not match. Re-instating {D} following upgrade by using System settings/User Accounts added a new {D} and left the old one as #1000. I've run chown down {D}'s home directory and got a successful logon. Would still like to know how properly to re-instate a user, but that problem is now in the past. – hamiljf May 26 '17 at 7:54
  • Maybe you could write that up as an answer, for the record? – steeldriver May 26 '17 at 15:10

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