KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Kernels & Hardware, configuring network, installing services

KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby Romane » 2018-06-13 07:50

I have finally run into an issue which has me completely stumped. Usually a search on the Internet and/or the use of man pages gets me through, or even (dangerously) editing what appear to be relevant configuration files. Not this time, and it has been a couple of weeks, but it is possible that I am not using the right keywords.

System is AMD64 Debian Buster, kept fully up to date. I am triple-booting one other Buster partition with XFCE and Lightdm, with no issues. I also have one Debian Sid partition, likewise XFCE and LightDM, with no issues.

Description of problem. At boot time, the system gets to the console screen, then fails. I could wait forever (and have waited long periods just to check).

But, when I start to log in as myself, the boot process to the graphical login screen begins, but at varying intervals, as follows.

Often, after I have entered my user-name and press enter, I start to type my password, and the rest of the boot process suddenly automatically continues.

Other times, I get to complete entering my password, press enter, then as I begin typing 'startx', the boot process itself of itself suddenly continues.

Other times, I finish typing startx and have to tap enter for it to work - I have tried waiting to see if after a while it starts before pressing enter, and no.

There are a large number of "hits" with Google all offering different solutions.Not one of them has worked (yes, I have been careful, to a degree).

I did try substituting LightDM, and everything went flawlessly. But I don't want, if I can help it, LightDM on the planned destination computer (once this gets resolved), I want the default for the KDE system - it is for my wife. But, if in the end I must, then I must.

I have likewise studied the file .xsession-errors but nothing that switches on a light in my head.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Even a solution if one happens to come by :D I don't think it could be too much, due to the boot process re-continuing of it own accord at the various points above.
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby sunrat » 2018-06-13 11:59

I'm using Plasma 5 on siduction with SDDM which I think is KDE default. No issues like that.
You could try (as root):
Code: Select all
dpkg-reconfigure sddm
“ computer users can be divided into 2 categories:
Those who have lost data
...and those who have not lost data YET ”
Remember to BACKUP!
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby milomak » 2018-06-13 13:06

iMac - MacOS and Windows 10 (Bootcamp)/ Debian Sid (External SSD)
Laptop (64-bit) - Debian Sid, Win10,
Kodi Box - Debian Sid
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby Romane » 2018-06-14 03:59

sunrat wrote:I'm using Plasma 5 on siduction with SDDM which I think is KDE default. No issues like that.
You could try (as root):
Code: Select all
dpkg-reconfigure sddm


Thank you for responding.

One of the early things I tried. No go, sadly :(
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby Romane » 2018-06-14 04:19



Ahh, very good reminder - I should have added that in my first post.

I did a net-install of Buster which installed an older version of the kernel, then upgraded to the currently available kernel (whatever that is right now) after first boot. I seem to favour staying with whatever is vanilla with the operating system. You know the saying: If it aint broke....

The issue occurs regardless the initial earlier kernel or the most up-to-date one after first boot.

I have done a normal net-install selecting KDE at the time when it came to select which desktop environment.
I then tried adding in kde-full
Still the same issue.

Formatted the drive, reinstalled with no desktop environment. After first boot, installed kde-full with apt. This did not correct the issue.

Formatted the drive, reinstalled as the first time, hoping that "something" would have fixed the issue. Nope, still the same.

I have been using ...DI-Alpha2-...netinst.iso -
thought just occurred to me now as I type - I wonder if DI-Alpha1 may work better? Or, perhaps, instead of a net-install, download a "full" install CD/USB and try that. (slaps forehead - sometimes, I am just a bit slower than I am at other times). Give me a cupla days to report back on trying those avenues. Even though that may not solve the issue, as such, if one or more of them work it solves my issue and I will be happy for the nonce.

It is, after all, called Testing :lol:

I had thought of auto-login, but would rather not go down that track. Someone ever decides to go walkies with the beastie, it is most likely they will be Windows, but not Linux, familiar, thus (and I love theory :) ) would simply reformat the drive under a Windoze system.
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby Romane » 2018-06-15 08:35

I downloaded the DVD for Buster, and had two installs from it.

The first, when the question came up whether to connect to the Internet and install including the repositories, I said yes. Issue persisted at first boot - brought me to the console and had to log in and use startx to get to the login screen.

Wiped partition, and did a second install, but when asked whether to connect to the Internet and a repository, said no. At first boot, went straight to the login screen. I rubbed my hands together and thought: "You beauty!" Logged in, did an apt update, and had just over 1500 updates (just over 1.1 Gb). Updated. After the update, rebooted. Wiped grin off my face as boot made it to the console and stopped. Had to log in and use startx.

I did try (again) using Lightdm as my login manager, which on reboot went straight to the login screen. But... getting to the desktop took f o r e e e e v v a h h h ! !. Changed back to sddm, rebooted, and only got as far as the console.

Just a personal thought, but it looks like KDE Plasma, or just SDDM is, for the nonce, Busted (pun intended) with a current fresh install :(
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby sunrat » 2018-06-15 12:04

As this is not working for you so far, I suggest you try installing the latest siduction if you want KDE Plasma 5.12. I've done several installs with no issues. The installer is simple and reliable, and is not alpha like the Buster installer. It's based on Debian Sid with a few customisations but mainly uses the Debian repositories.
If this works, then you know the problem is with the Buster installer.

It would help to know your hardware as well. From siduction live boot, run and post here:
Code: Select all
inxi -Fz

You can also install inxi in Debian if you'd prefer.
“ computer users can be divided into 2 categories:
Those who have lost data
...and those who have not lost data YET ”
Remember to BACKUP!
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby milomak » 2018-06-19 14:47

i realise again this is not solving your problem, but why is it you don't want lightdm?

i ask cause i am using it on my imac on which i am running plasma and there are no issues with it.
iMac - MacOS and Windows 10 (Bootcamp)/ Debian Sid (External SSD)
Laptop (64-bit) - Debian Sid, Win10,
Kodi Box - Debian Sid
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby Romane » 2018-06-22 08:51

sunrat wrote:As this is not working for you so far, I suggest you try installing the latest siduction if you want KDE Plasma 5.12. I've done several installs with no issues. The installer is simple and reliable, and is not alpha like the Buster installer. It's based on Debian Sid with a few customisations but mainly uses the Debian repositories.
If this works, then you know the problem is with the Buster installer.

It would help to know your hardware as well. From siduction live boot, run and post here:
Code: Select all
inxi -Fz

You can also install inxi in Debian if you'd prefer.


Good morning @sunrat

I fully appreciate where you are coming from regards siduction. And thank you for your suggestion, and likewise for trying to help with further diagnosis,

It is not so much that I want Plasma 5.12. I want a system with Plasma under, if possible, Debian, that my wife will feel comfortable with.

The computer all this is going on is my wife's. At the moment she is running an arch-based distro (don't remember which one off the top of my head). For the last number of years (maybe even run to the word 'decade') she has been using KDE. The only reason that I am looking at changing her distro is that she wants more games. No, she is not interested in all these games that so many who call them-selves "gamers" seem to enjoy. Forget Steam and anything even remotely like it. Card games, a few puzzles - like the "standard" set of games that come as kde-games (or such) when installed in Debian. Otherwise, she is quite happy (and comfortable) with the set-up she has now.

I did, once, try her on Xfce, but reverted back to Plasma very quickly. I learned - don't change anything where possible that she will have a problem adapting to.

I did try siduction very, very recently in a partition on my computer. Now, there is nothing wrong with siduction, get that clear, but I just did not like it. Personal taste, and nothing more (same reason almost 100% of the distro's I try don't last on my computer more than a few hours at best).

I have very strong doubts that the Buster install material is at fault. When I tried the DVD, it installed perfectly - like the net-install CD, it is DI-alpha2. The problem, I am convinced, is in something in the repositories since DI-alpha2 was built (there were a bunch of updates, about 1.1 Gb), because though the DVD install without connecting to the repositories went perfectly and booted to the log-in screen, only after I updated the system did the boot-up fail to go further than the console.

I would likewise consider that this is KDE specific in the repositories - I have tested on a number of other desktop environments in Debian, and there is no failure to boot to the login screen.

Likewise, it seems to appear that there is some work being done by the developers at the moment - I have 220 key packages now marked as being local or obsolete since my last check of the repositories a couple of days ago. I am thus expecting to see a number of updates flow in soon, one or more of which may address the problem. The developers do a fantastic job, and with the complexity of modern systems one can appreciate that just sometimes, a temporary error may creep in during the development process.

And if not fixed with upcoming updates, the Stable branch may be my best solution - something that my wife will be mostly familiar with, will not take a learning curve (as much as is possible), and satisfies her request for more games.

Last point - we must remember that this is the Testing branch - so it ain't stable (entirely, even if mostly) and remains in a state of flux. Reason I took my wife off the Testing branch originally was because Plasma was broken in Testing (that was during the development of Stretch). Plasma in Stable now is rock-solid.
Last edited by Romane on 2018-06-22 09:07, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby Romane » 2018-06-22 09:02

milomak wrote:i realise again this is not solving your problem, but why is it you don't want lightdm?

i ask cause i am using it on my imac on which i am running plasma and there are no issues with it.


Good morning @milomak

It is not that *I* don't want LightDM - all my own working systems are Xfce with LightDM, and LightDM is my own preferred Desktop Manager..

It is that if I use LightDM for my wife's computer, I am introducing her to something which, even if only visually, is too different from SSDM. She is fantastic at most things, but when it comes to computers and phones.... Experience has shown me to keep things as close as I possibly can to what she is used to (but I have no control over changes from updates, so that is always an interesting time :) ).
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Re: KDE-Plasma 5 boot-up issue

Postby sunrat » 2018-06-22 11:42

From all that you've written, it sounds like you would be best served by Stable.
“ computer users can be divided into 2 categories:
Those who have lost data
...and those who have not lost data YET ”
Remember to BACKUP!
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