What to do if your Ubuntu desktop goes all black (21 feb 13)
I don't know how it happened, but Ubuntu (12) went back to normal Unix mode when I shut it down. When I restarted, it was a console. No worries:
But that just gave me a mouse pointer on a black background.
How I wish I'd just left Windows on the machine!
I'm joking, of course.
Somewhere I read that it should be 'gdm', not 'startx'. That didn't work either. Then, somewhere else, it said
Lots of flashing windows later, my desktop is back to 'normal' (it's a kind of copy of Mac).