penguin Tux, the Linux Mascot
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The other day my son was playing some games on my Xubuntu desktop PC when everything froze up.

I’m not sure exactly what he did, but it was unresponsive.

Because of that I decided to reboot the computer and when it came back up I was presented with the Lightdm login screen. The only issue was that when I tried to login, the computer would think for a bit then just refresh the login screen. WTF?

The issue was that somehow the permissions got changed on the .Xauthority file in my profile. So this is how I fixed it:

  • Pressed Ctrl + Alt + F3 to drop into a terminal and log in.
  • Ran ls -alh to show all files and folders under my profile. The permissions for .Xauthority were something like
    -rw-------  1 root root   53 Mar 02 10:19 .Xauthority
  • Next I ran sudo chown username:username .Xauthority then rebooted
  • When the computer came back up I was able to login again.

Again, I’m not sure what caused this. If you know what would cause it please let me know in the comments.

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