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  • Incorrect display, text and other elements

    Posted on Slowpoke47 Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums AskWoody support Non-Windows operating systems Linux – all distros Incorrect display, text and other elements

    Topic Resolution: Resolved
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      • #2039586 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Happy New Year to forum members.

        Looks like I gave myself a New Year’s present- managed to foul up FireFox settings or something that has resulted in incorrect renditions of text and occasionally, non-text screen elements, see s/shot:

        text-display

        (This is a piece of the FF help blog, not my own problem.)

        Environment is Dell desktop running Mate 19.2.  Note that text now has random bold and very thin elements.  Also, what doesn’t show here is that font size has become tiny, requiring me to zoom the display to 120% or higher to read it.  In Preferences> General> Fonts and Colors, changing the settings does not appear to change anything onscreen, and, of course, there is no “Apply” function needed to activate a change.

        Display text etc. of locally stored files, including downloaded, is as expected.  Monitor is and has been at native resolution of 1440×900, and testing other options changes the screen appearance, but not the oddity described above.  Another change, related or not, is that the local radar screen at radar.weather.gov, which previously has displayed with incorrect, overlapping elements, now displays correctly, although with very small font without the above erroneous features.

        Seems to me I have caused this issue by some ill-advised choices, although I have tried resetting all the parameters I have found.  This is local to this machine only.

        Solutions that come to mind are a reset of FF to defaults or reinstalling FF (after saving my bookmarks), or restoring the system using a recent backup.  As for a restore, unknown whether this would make a difference, although I believe the backup is supposed to be “bare-metal.”

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        Attachments:
      • #2039641 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        More info- on this same machine, which dual boots Mint and Win7, FireFox displays correctly when opened in Win7.  A second computer, same boot arrangement, displays FF correctly in either OS.  So this is definitely a local issue.

        Also- cruising around online reveals that various text display issues with FF and Linux are not rare.  I did try another font, having read that sometimes a font gets corrupted, but the problem remains.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        • #2039691 Reply
          Kirsty
          Da Boss

          Might it be worth trying a Firefox fork, like Pale Moon?



          @microfix
          is most likely going to be able to help you out with this (great knowledge on FF, and on Linux) 🙂

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2039764 Reply
            Slowpoke47
            AskWoody Plus

            Thanks for that link- just took a look and it may be above my pay grade.  No idea if this is OS-related or browser-related.  Perhaps the cavalry will ride in for the rescue…

            Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2039775 Reply
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        Have you tried changing the setting:
        Preferences> General> Language and Appearance> Fonts and Colors> Advanced>
        untick Allow pages to choose their own fonts
        clear the firefox cache and restart firefox and report back 🙂

        No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created IT - AE
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2039783 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          That box,  “Allow…” was previously unchecked, I tried checking it yesterday to see if it made any difference- none then and none just no after unchecking it.

          Not sure what this means

          clear the firefox cache

          but I closed and reopened FF, no changes to faulty display.  I noted that not all text on a given page is affected- e.g. text entered in the login fields here on Woody displays perfectly.   This problem, whatever it is, appeared about two days ago, while Mint and FF had been working correctly for several months.

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        • #2039801 Reply
          PaulK
          AskWoody Lounger

          To clear cache –
          [Menu Bar] > History > Clear Recent History…
          Select a ‘Time range to clear:’, and check box.

          For another way to clear cookies, see: Tools > Options > Privacy … > Cookies … .

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2039929 Reply
            Slowpoke47
            AskWoody Plus

            Actually I police cookies and history pretty closely, just didn’t connect on “cache” in Microfix’s suggestion.  Our computers are set to delete history on closing FF, so the cache was empty.  As for cookies, we allow only a very few sites (but including Woody) to leave them on our computers,  The rest are deleted on closing as well.

            Some incompatibility issue has become established in this machine.  I think it’s my fault.  Our other computer, with the same dual-boot Mint/ Win7 config, is as normal, and affects FF only, no local files.

            Today I plan to compare all settings between the two looking for differences.  If none found I’m at a loss to straighten it out.  I’m also going to reboot from Mint (now) into Win7 (on a separate HDD) to see if that OS is okay.

            Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2039946 Reply
        anonymous
        Guest

        Support.mozilla.org is the official support forum for Firefox and also has FAQs.  I believe they are likely to tell you to refresh Firefox which was once called reset.  It does fix quite a few things, and should keep your bookmarks, but it resets some settings to default.  You should make a backup first (of all, or of the Firefox profile) and also print the info if you go to address about:support that could allow you to undo changes it makes.

        If this does not fix the font or rendering issue, you can post there for follow up help.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2039961 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        Some incompatibility issue has become established in this machine. I think it’s my fault. Our other computer, with the same dual-boot Mint/ Win7 config, is as normal, and affects FF only, no local files.

        Today I plan to compare all settings between the two looking for differences. If none found I’m at a loss to straighten it out.

        You might want to look at what the Version Number is for your various installs of FireFox to see if they are all the same, or if they are different.

        Do you have one or more of your FireFox set up to *automatically* update to the latest version? That’s a source of settings changes that occur behind your back if it’s set up that way.

        Or do you have things set so you manually control when FireFox will update? I have mine set to notify me when there are updates, but I do manual updates when I’m ready. When I know I’m going to be doing an update, I create a system backup image first so I’m prepared to restore the image file if the update goes south, and I have problems with the new version. That happens rarely, but it does happen on occasion. But, you have to know that you have made that version update, so you know what to blame for a sudden onset of problem(s), should they occur.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2039971 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Just finished comparing FF settings in our two computers.  Both machines running v. 71.  Only difference was that only this (problem) machine had ublock origin installed.  I removed it and restarted FF but that move made no difference.

        I have posted to the Mozilla and Mint forums, perhaps someone there has seen this issue.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040050 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Update- After looking at the Mozilla help info, I have tried several of their strategies- refreshed FF, issue not resolved, then reinstalled from repo (current 71.0 version), reviewed recent settings and bookmark additions, including deleting a few recent b/m’s, then using site guidance, created a new FF user profile.  None of this made any difference.

        This problem began last Tuesday, and not while FF was open, or I would have noticed it immediately, as the font would have shrunk to mouse size and become distorted.  And as mentioned, our other machine, using the same OS, is unaffected.

        Running out of ideas.  Considering the possibility that the 2019- 2020 change might be involved, but if so it remains that there has been no change in the other computer.  The only difference between the two is bookmarks.  Just saved them to a doc, could try deleting them from the browser. but that seems like grasping at straws.  The Linux community assures me that a virus or suchlike is almost unheard of in Linux distros, and never having had one, I wouldn’t recognize one if it walked up and shook my hand.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040062 Reply
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        Have a look in your ‘synaptics package manager’ on the device in question.
        Once synaptics package manager is opened, from main (top) menubar File then click on History to see if any linux/ mint update/s was/were installed on or before that date then list them here..It’s a long shot

        I actually think your FF/FF config settings is corrupt and upon last reinstallation, the config files are re-introducing the problem. We may need to nuke FF and all your config files and start from scratch.

        No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created IT - AE
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2040078 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          There are no changes right at last Tuesday, and anything that happened today is after the fact.  This is what I see:Changes

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

          Attachments:
      • #2040074 Reply
        anonymous
        Guest

        I wonder if a corrupt font or one that Firefox has a bug when rendering is newly installed on your computer.  Sorry that I don’t know how to check which fonts are currently in use on the current page, but, if you know how to check that, or which fonts were recently added (a package manager log?) you could try removing them, or searching bugzilla.mozilla.org for recent font issues.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040082 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        I actually think your FF/FF config settings is corrupt and upon last reinstallation, the config files are re-introducing the problem. We may need to nuke FF and all your config files and start from scratch.

        This at least sounds like a plausible solution.  When I reinstalled FF earlier, the tabs and bookmarks were still showing, so it wasn’t a complete blank slate.

        Possibly the new (corrected) config of the NWS radar page as noted above is some sort of clue?

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040084 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        I wonder if a corrupt font or one that Firefox has a bug when rendering is newly installed on your computer.  Sorry that I don’t know how to check which fonts are currently in use on the current page, but, if you know how to check that, or which fonts were recently added (a package manager log?) you could try removing them, or searching bugzilla.mozilla.org for recent font issues.

        No new fonts added, shows running the default- DejaVu Serif.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040093 Reply
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        NOTE: I don’t use linux mint so these instructions may vary a bit from linux distros.

        ok first we need to backup your existing bookmarks so, within FF goto

        (step 1)
        filemenu > Bookmarks > show all bookmarks >
        then Import and Backup > Backup

        then save to somewhere as.json file for restoration later.

        (step 2)
        Take a written note of your extensions in use (it could possibly be one of those causing issues too and best to start afresh)

        (step 3)
        In your Home folder in linux we need to display hidden files to see the mozilla profile settings Filemenu > View> Show hidden files (or something like that)

        within your Home folder there will be a hidden mozilla folder click on it and delete it

        (step 4)
        then go to your package manager and remove firefox as you have done before. Then re-install firefox and this time there should be no bookmarks or extensions once freshly installed.(open it up to check) then
        repeat (step 1) with the change of restoring your bookmarks from your previously saved location.

        Check your FF preferences/ tweaks that you have and change as required.

        once done, re-install the extensions you had before (step 2)

        No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created IT - AE
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2040141 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          Thanks, very clear!

          Followed steps, Pkg Mgr showed two items as installed in a lengthy list- the main one (I think) which is first on that list, and an English language pack.  Did complete removal and then reinstall on these, but the FF screen never disappeared, and tabs, b/marks, all still there, along with the text problem.  FWIW, I didn’t actually close FF before doing this, does that make a difference?

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

          • #2040263 Reply
            anonymous
            Guest

            who uninstalls a program whilst it’s still running? Microfix obviously forgot to mention that you need to close firefox before uninstalling.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #2040377 Reply
              Ascaris
              AskWoody_MVP

              It’s Linux, so you can close it after uninstalling if you wish.  If you reinstall it or update to a new version, it won’t be the new version until you close all windows for the one that was running and restart it.

              Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

      • #2040153 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        searching bugzilla.mozilla.org for recent font issues.

        No hits at all for this issue.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040298 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        who uninstalls a program whilst it’s still running? Microfix obviously forgot to mention that you need to close firefox before uninstalling.

        My fault- don’t blame Microfix.  I was never in that situation, never gave it a second thought.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040311 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        My latest thought on this issue is that the display errors result from an improperly coded update.  I looked at the update history and found that the most recent one was installed on 12/28/19.  Here’s the update:Update-history

        My recollection has been that the problem began perhaps on the 29th or 30th, but although my memory is as good as ever, it seems to be somewhat shorter in recent years.

        Is it possible to remove an installed update, a la Win7, in order to test this theory?

        Another option would be to use a backup.  Since my backups are weekly, on Mondays, the newest one, from the 30th of December, was made after the suspect update, but I can use the 12/23 backup.

        I considered trying to reverse engineer the defective behavior via Pkg Mgr but that seems like hit and (mostly) miss as I wouldn’t know all of what to look for, other than by date.

         

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        Attachments:
      • #2040371 Reply
        Ascaris
        AskWoody_MVP

        The first step in troubleshooting Firefox is usually to create a new profile and see if the issue still persists.  This won’t harm or erase any of your data in the old profile.

        Into the URL bar, type

        about:profiles

        Press the button to create a new profile.  You can call it anything you like, and then click “Launch profile in new browser” for that new profile.

        Does the problem persist in that one?

        If so, the problem is in the profile somewhere.  Windows and Linux use different profiles, so a messed up profile in either one would not affect the other.

        After the test, you can delete the profile you just created, or you could leave it… if you don’t select it as the default, the old profile with your bookmarks and such will be the one that appears next time you open Firefox.

        Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040420 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        The first step in troubleshooting Firefox is usually to create a new profile and see if the issue still persists. This won’t harm or erase any of your data in the old profile.

        Already did this- no changes noted.

        Would appreciate your comment on my earlier post re possible problem with an update that I installed just about when the faulty display issue came up.  If my understanding of the Veeam backup process is correct, deploying a backup would restore everything to that config, thereby eliminating any problems that might have been due to a later update (if the backup includes FF settings).

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        • #2040479 Reply
          Ascaris
          AskWoody_MVP

          Ok, so it’s affecting even the fresh profile.  Restoring the backup with the old profile wouldn’t help, in that case.

          Edit: I looked back above and saw you already know about the History option.  Mintreport doesn’t seem like a likely candidate, but you can try them out one by one with the “force version” method below.

          If you open Synaptic Package Manager, under File, there is an option for History.  If you select that, it will show you the full update history, sorted by date.  If you can narrow down which update caused the issue, you can revert the package that caused the issue to its previous version.  To do that, find the package in the main view of Synaptic (search or filter to find it easier), then select Package in the menu bar, then Force version.  It should show several versions, and the one that you had before should be the second to most recent version shown.  You can do that with as many packages as you wish if you are not sure which caused the issue (don’t worry about it undoing updates that were not the cause… it will automatically update those next time if you do not specifically lock the old version in).  Then hit Apply, and it will list the “packages to be DOWNGRADED,” which is what you want.  Tell it to go ahead, then see if it fixed anything.  To do that, log out and log back in, and if it is still bad, try rebooting.  If it is still messed up, the problem must not be one of the packages that got reverted to an older version.

          If you did Timeshift backups, this is exactly the kind of thing it’s good for.  Veeam will work too, but we will have to work around that bug in the recovery media that has not yet been fixed that I mentioned before, and the next time you let it update, it will mess up again, and you won’t know which package to block to prevent that (and that would affect Timeshift too).  You could simply not take any of them, and that should work, but if you can narrow it down to a few candidates, we should be able to isolate the offender and keep the rest.

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

          • This reply was modified 11 months ago by Ascaris.
          • This reply was modified 11 months ago by Ascaris.
          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040462 Reply
        anonymous
        Guest

        Some people on Mozilla and Linux Mint forums might be on vacation.  If you can wait longer, they might reply later.

        Going to your backup should fix it, if you turn off updates or don’t update after doing so.  Since a new profile did not fix it, did you already try Firefox safe mode?  I think safe mode disables graphics hardware acceleration and webrender.

        This would be an unlikely fix, but if you are on Mint 19.2 and are willing to make another backup first, Mint 19.3 is released and it should be a smooth upgrade to it if you wanted to give it a try.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2040488 Reply
          Ascaris
          AskWoody_MVP

          Couldn’t hurt to try this too.

          Edit: And I thought of another thing too.  Sorry I am throwing these out so quickly (and in multiple replies), but you could also create a new Mint user and see if Firefox is messed up for that account.  If not, it would suggest that the problem is in your /home/steve folder somewhere, which helps narrow it down.

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

          • This reply was modified 11 months ago by Ascaris.
          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040485 Reply
        Ascaris
        AskWoody_MVP

        That text looks a lot like another bug I saw in Firefox before, but that was supposed to have been fixed a long time ago.  Still, you could try this and see if it affects anything.

        using about:config, Set these prefs:

        x.canvas.azure.backends
        gfx.content.azure.backends

        to cairo. They should both be skia by default. Restart Firefox, and see if it is any better.

        There was a bug about that a long time ago, but it was fixed, so I don’t know at all if it is the same thing… but the bugged text looked just like in your image.

        If this doesn’t fix it, it’s a good idea to set them both back to skia, as that is faster than cairo.

        Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040492 Reply
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        There is another thing you may want to check:
        in about:config search for: layout.css.devPixelsPerPx
        this should display value of -1 (default) if it’s not, change it to this value.

        No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created IT - AE
        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040532 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Thanks all for the responses.  Just for the record, I am at this point using a different font in FF that helps slightly with legibility.  As yet I have seen no distorted text or other elements on any locally generated pages, just on FF.  My conclusion is that the problem is FF-related.  Originally I thought I made yet another dumb move, causing the problem, but now I’m not convinced it’s my fault.  Can’t say for sure  exactly which day this started, but it was within the time frame of the most recent updating, on Dec. 28, to the 31st.  Text as well as a few non-text elements now display differently, which would suggest other than a font issue- so I’m thinking, a dud update.

        Our other computer now runs Mate 19.2 also, just recently installed last Tuesday from the same stick.  Since the stick is now several months old, there was a ton of automatic updating during the install, and I don’t know if the two machines have exactly the same updates installed.  But the second machine does not have the same issue as this one.

        My previous experience, such as it was, was all Windows, and seems to me over the years once or twice, removing a recent update cured a newly acquired problem.  This has led me to suspect the same phenomenon here.  This morning I looked for update history, found it in Update Mgr, unable to then pursue it, but Ascaris has pointed the way to follow that up.

        More time tomorrow to address this.  Again, my thanks.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2040726 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        If you open Synaptic Package Manager, under File, there is an option for History. If you select that, it will show you the full update history, sorted by date

        Started here today.  I’m comparing the installed pkgs between our two machines. both running the same Mate 19.2.  The other machine has no display abnormalities.

        An important correction- on close study of several docs, I see subtle text abnormalities there as well, contrary to my previous statement that only FF is affected.  My apologies for this misinformation.

        Both computers have the mintreport 1.1.4 pkg installed.  In this machine, there was a long list of pkgs installed on 12/27/19 via the update function:Pkg-Mgr-history-Dec-27

        None of these are installed in the other computer.  The other entries dated 12/27 in the left pane are installs and reinstalls of the same musescore pkgs, a musical notation program which I have used for many years in Win7.  Those pkgs are currently installed (from the repo), note entries in right pane.

        Looking for comment on my thought to remove one or more items in this list to see if the text display is corrected.  Not familiar with the syntax, but looks like some may be related to text.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        Attachments:
      • #2040740 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        As yet I have seen no distorted text or other elements on any locally generated pages, just on FF.

        So, this *display* problem is FireFox only–so just your browser, and no other software, and only on your desktop Mint OS, not on the dual boot Win7 on this same desktop.

        So, it’s not a general *Linux* issue, and not a general video *card* issue, and not a general *monitor* issue–meaning it does not effect everything on the Mint OS, and does not effect anything on the Win7 OS.

        So, everything seems to be pointing at something specific to FireFox, some aspect of that software, and its interaction with your Mint video driver(s).

        As a thought, have you considered installing a different browser–just as a test to see if it happens on different browser software as it does with FireFox. Also, it’s a temporary work around so your browsing is more pleasant until you find a *cure* for what ails FireFox.

        Some browser options:

        10 Best Web Browsers For Linux

        13 Best Ubuntu Web Browsers: Which One is Right for You?

        I always have the Chrome browser installed on all my systems as a second option for when something will not load properly on FireFox–doesn’t hurt anything to have it available when needed. (Also, one has to use Chrome to do Chrome-casting to the TV from the computer to watch various streaming programs on the *bigger screen*.

        Originally I thought I made yet another dumb move, causing the problem, but now I’m not convinced it’s my fault.

        You have said something like this several times now. It sure sounds like you were making some FireFox setting changes, or Mint system changes at some point in the time period when this problem began. It begs the question, what changes were you making?

        Given all the suggestions that have been given above, I don’t know if you are doing this, but I would recommend that you keep a notebook, and record what settings you are altering, where those settings are found, what were the settings before you made any change(s), and what the new setting(s) are after you have made any change(s)–this so you have a road map back to those changes so you can *undo* them if they did not help–or make matters worse!

        I have some more thoughts on the display *symptoms* you have described–but will have to be later–but, they might help direct where to look for the problem.

        • #2040746 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          NightOwl- please see my mea culpa, posted today.  On closer examination, the problem goes beyond FF.

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

          • #2040870 Reply
            Ascaris
            AskWoody_MVP

            Did you try creating a new Mint user and logging that in?  If the issue is in your home directory, that should show it.  If the new user looks fine, it’s got to be in your home folder somewhere.

            Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040749 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        NightOwl- please see my mea culpa, posted today. On closer examination, the problem goes beyond FF.

        Well, that changes what we need to look at–now it’s the Mint OS, other software updates and their effect on the Mint OS video driver(s), and not just FireFox.

        Looking for comment on my thought to remove one or more items in this list to see if the text display is corrected. Not familiar with the syntax, but looks like some may be related to text.

        If what you installed on 12/27 and 12/28 are readily available, and can be re-installed again without any loss (other than time), my quick and dirty answer is *uninstall everything from 12/27 and 12/28* and see if that eliminates the problem. If *yes*, then you will have to decide if you want to re-install, but only one item at a time, and then test to see if the problem returns. If done step by step, you will find which install causes the problem, and you will know what questions you need to start asking about that software, and its relationship to your Mint OS.

        I have more, as I said before, but it has to wait–other commitments this morning …

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2040967 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Did you try creating a new Mint user and logging that in?  If the issue is in your home directory, that should show it.  If the new user looks fine, it’s got to be in your home folder somewhere.

        Just did this- new user looks good, displays as expected.

        I suspect this problem might be another consequence of the mouse failure last month.  I did notice and correct some other oddities at that time, but as far as any other disruptions, I haven’t a clue.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041200 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        Looking at your original description of the problem(s):

        Note that text now has random bold and very thin elements. Also, what doesn’t show here is that font size has become tiny, requiring me to zoom the display to 120% or higher to read it.

        And,

        Another change, related or not, is that the local radar screen at radar.weather.gov, which previously has displayed with incorrect, overlapping elements, now displays correctly, although with very small font without the above erroneous features.

        So, the first question is why has this series of *problems* just now begun to show up–and not previously? Usually you have to look to setting changes that you have made, or downloaded and installed new programs that have made setting changes behind your back without making you aware that they were going to make such changes. Something triggered changes–but, what did that?

        But, the problems you are describing are not something I have not seen under certain circumstances in various Windows OSs–and they all centered around display resolution–if set too high, the desktop shortcut icons and their text became *too small* to read easily. And there are *fixed fonts* (their size and spacing remains the same), and there are *proportional fonts* (depending on the character–it takes up more or less spacing as you type them). It has always seemed that the *proportional fonts* show more change with resolution changes than *fixed fonts*–which makes sense being as the spacing is being effected by the resolution change–higher resolution, smaller space between elements.

        Regarding the *weather radar* website that had *overlapping elements* prior to the changes that you have noted–the website was not correctly adjusting its presentation of its elements to your browser so it would *fit properly*–so the website was expecting a *higher resolution* screen than what your OS was actually offering. When the *changes* occurred, your system now was set to a higher resolution that allowed those elements to fit on the available real estate–but at the price of reducing the *size* of the site’s text and picture elements as a secondary change to the rendering of that website on your system.

        I have seen similar effects on Windows OSs. In particular, on one of my WinXP systems, I had a desktop fairly full of desktop shortcut icons, and set at a fairly high resolution. When I needed to change to the Windows *Safe Mode* for a trouble shooting need, and the *Safe Mode* was a very low resolution environment. I had a number of desktop icons *disappear* when in *Safe Mode*. Actually those icons had not *disappeared*–they had stacked themselves on top of other icons (overlapping elements). If I made a blank spot on the desktop, I could click on a given icon, and move it to the open spot, and that revealed the underlying *hidden* icon.

        Why was that happening? When booting to *Safe Mode*, that environment prevents many (most) third party software from loading. Window *Safe Mode* defaults to basic generic Microsoft drivers for as many devices as it can. If there was not a generic driver available, well then that device did not work! But, the bottom line is that the Microsoft generic system video driver was not the one I had loaded for my video card from the manufacturer in my regular WinXP environment, and the monitor resolution was not the one that my regular WinXP OS was aware of because I had loaded a specific device info (.inf) file that told the Win OS what the capabilities of my monitor was in terms of what resolutions it could handle.

        So, with the *mismatch* between my regular WinXP display resolution settings, and the Win *Safe Mode* resolution generic settings, my desktop icons had no place to be, so they stacked themselves one on top of another. So, they were there, just not presented in the manner they (and I) were accustom to.

        So, again, your apparent display resolution change to a *higher screen resolution* has allowed those radar site elements to *fit* into their proper relative positions, but at the price of those smaller appearing sizes.

        You probably need to look at your Mint OS as to how it handles video drivers and monitor screen resolution abilities. I know on Windows, I need to load the manufacturer’s video drivers so the Win OS *knows* what my video card is capable of, and then the video card can control the proper implementation of the various available resolutions. And the Win OS needs to know my specific monitor model in order to deliver resolutions that the monitor is expecting to see.

        How does Mint handle that? Are you currently using *generic Mint video drivers*? Are you supposed to load specific drivers for your particular video hardware? If so, have you done that? Does Mint need to know your specific *monitor model* and its specific capabilities? Or is Mint operating using a *generic* monitor display profile?

        As a basic, it would be a good idea to know what video card manufacturer, and model number you are using (Sometimes, on desktop computer models, there is either a add-on video card that’s plugged into one of the motherboard’s card slots–or, there may be a video chip that is directly soldered onto the motherboard–basically *built-in*. In that case, you may still have a video card plugged in, and in the BIOS the *built-in* video chip has been disabled to allow that video card plug in to work.) If the video is a *built-in* chip, then we would need to know the motherboard manufacturer and model number.

        And, it would be a good idea to know the manufacturer, and model number of the monitor.

        With that information, we should be able to look up those model numbers, and see the specifications, and determine what video resolutions are available and supported by those hardware items.

        And, with the supported resolution information, that might guide us to make setting change(s) on the Mint OS to help resolve video problem(s).

        And, you need to find out if specific drivers are needed (available) for specific video hardware in order to make them perform properly. (I don’t know if Linux, or Mint, in particular, requires this the way Windows does?)

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2041242 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        But, the problems you are describing are not something I have not seen under certain circumstances in various Windows OSs–and they all centered around display resolution–if set too high, the desktop shortcut icons and their text became *too small* to read easily.

        This reads as if the “not” is an error.

        Thanks for your interest- as mentioned, screen res is unchanged, set to native from the outset in both machines.  Only one has the display problem.  And, in that machine, the problem just appeared a week ago after running Mint for several months.

        At first I attributed erratic mouse response to human error (mine), but then it failed completely.  There could well be some further recovery needed that I have yet to find.

        Ascaris suggested what could be a clue by testing a new account, which, as stated, displays normally.  FYI, in Mint, the OS is divided into “user accounts.”  All files, options, settings, etc. are specific to the user who is currently logged in (one choice being “guest”), so it appears that the one (and only) account we have been using has an embedded problem, which does not carry over to any other account.

        As you likely know, I’m still on the upside of the learning curve with this, but the nuclear option, failing all else, may be to abandon and remove the affected account after transferring the files into a new account.  However, with several months’ experience under my belt, I can say that Mint is an excellent refuge from Win7 and is a substantially better system.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041270 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        Just did this- new user looks good, displays as expected.

        Interesting! So, when you create a *new user*, do you have to install a new separate instance of the FireFox Browser for that user account? Or, is that *new user* account sharing the FireFox Browser that was installed by the *original user*? Or, did a *new user profile* have to be created for the FireFox browser in order to use it in the *new user*

        And now, for that *new user* profile, when you load FireFox you no longer see any font issues–they are *full size* (not too small to read), and shaped correctly–no anomalies?

        And, when you go to the weather radar website, the elements are once again overlapping?

        And there are no OS system wide anomalies as noted yesterday?

        An important correction- on close study of several docs, I see subtle text abnormalities there as well, contrary to my previous statement that only FF is affected.

        And, does the *new user* have access to the program whose installation you referred to here?:

        The other entries dated 12/27 in the left pane are installs and reinstalls of the same musescore pkgs, a musical notation program which I have used for many years in Win7.

        Were there any anomalies to that program in your *original user account*? And anomalies in the *new user account?

        I suspect this problem might be another consequence of the mouse failure last month.

        What! How are you coming up with this speculative assumption? Do you have any evidence that these two events occurred at the same time, and one was related to the other? You certainly did not mention it at the time. You reported a hardware failure for the mouse, and if I understood correctly, you replace the mouse and the mouse functions were back to normal.

        I did notice and correct some other oddities at that time ..

        Again, this seems to be *new information*–is it related to this problem? So what *oddities* did you notice? And those *oddities* showed up as a result of seeing the mouse hardware failure issues? What did you do to *correct* those *oddities*? And, did those corrections work?

        Need to know details to see if there’s a correlation of some other hardware event (mouse failure) to the current (what seems to be a software) event (display resolution anomalies).

      • #2041310 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        nteresting! So, when you create a *new user*, do you have to install a new separate instance of the FireFox Browser for that user account?

        No, FF is automatically there, but the new user adds bookmarks, tabs, etc.  which are retained for that user.

        And, when you go to the weather radar website, the elements are once again overlapping? And there are no OS system wide anomalies as noted yesterday?

        Just poked around enough on FF as the new user to see that the display was correct.  Time has been in short supply.  That “test” user account had no files to look at, but no reason to think that the display problem would be “half-fixed.”  Didn’t try the NWS site either, but that site had displayed with overlapping elements in Mint since day one, and the NWS tech told me months ago that their site was due for revisions in 2020.  The rectified display there might not be related to anything local.

        And, does the *new user* have access to the program whose installation you referred to here?:

        A new user only gets access to pre-installed programs until he specifically adds others.  Musescore is available in the repo but not installed.

        What! How are you coming up with this speculative assumption? Do you have any evidence that these two events occurred at the same time, and one was related to the other? You certainly did not mention it at the time. You reported a hardware failure for the mouse, and if I understood correctly, you replace the mouse and the mouse functions were back to normal.

        This all happened at about the same time, so yes, I am speculating.  If the display issue was mouse-related, it was just as the mouse was failing completely.

        Again, this seems to be *new information*–is it related to this problem? So what *oddities* did you notice? And those *oddities* showed up as a result of seeing the mouse hardware failure issues? What did you do to *correct* those *oddities*? And, did those corrections work?

        Should have kept notes, but did not.  At this point, I can say that the only enduring issue is the display.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041337 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        A new user only gets access to pre-installed programs until he specifically adds others. Musescore is available in the repo but not installed

        Edit- this may not be correct- I plan to add another account and then I’ll see if this answer is right or not.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041350 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        A new user only gets access to pre-installed programs until he specifically adds others. Musescore is available in the repo but not installed

        Edit- this may not be correct- I plan to add another account and then I’ll see if this answer is right or not.

        Well, I am mistaken about this- just logged into Mint with a guest account and the musescore and printer software from the original account are there to use:-)  As I said, I’m still on the upside of the learning curve with this:-(

        Also, in belated response to a question by NightOwl- one of the “dying mouse” consequences was the scrambling of some folders in the home directory (equivalent to MS docs, downloads, etc) that I am so far unable to correct (likely due to being semi-clueless).

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041738 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        I have concluded it’s time to abandon forensic analysis in favor of a new strategy.  Currently working on setting up a second Admin account.  When I am satisfied that I have cloned the original, I’ll make the new account the default.  After using the new account enough to assure myself that it is indeed a true copy, and after copying all files and settings across, I’ll eventually remove the original, no hurry with that since it will not be used.

        Perhaps more experienced Mint users will point out any holes in this strategy doughnut, for which my thanks in advance.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041795 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        What! How are you coming up with this speculative assumption? Do you have any evidence that these two events occurred at the same time, and one was related to the other? You certainly did not mention it at the time. You reported a hardware failure for the mouse, and if I understood correctly, you replace the mouse and the mouse functions were back to normal.

        This all happened at about the same time, so yes, I am speculating. If the display issue was mouse-related, it was just as the mouse was failing completely.

        No, these events (display problem–reported as beginning somewhere around Dec. 27, 28, 29, 30, or 31—and mouse problem–reported on or around Dec. 22) did not *happen at about the same time* (*same time* would be more like *same day* or maybe *next day*!):

        Mouse has basically failed. Off to buy a new one, back shortly.

        The failing mouse caused some sort of *mouse problems*, the display issue occurred at a separate time and cause *display problems*–these are unrelated events, barring introduction of evidence to the contrary.

        So, just let this notion go …

        • #2041797 Reply
          jabeattyauditor
          AskWoody Lounger

          The failing mouse caused some sort of *mouse problems*, the display issue occurred at a separate time and cause *display problems*–these are unrelated events, barring introduction of evidence to the contrary.

          Did slowpoke install any software when he replaced the mouse?

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2041819 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        After using the new account enough to assure myself that it is indeed a true copy, and after copying all files and settings across, I’ll eventually remove the original,

        Certainly, another work-around that has solved the problem–so as long as the *cure* holds–I’d say go for it.

        There were other recommendations that held promise, as well, but you were apparently not comfortable with pursuing those options, attempted following at least one option (removal of FireFox and starting with a fresh install–but apparently followed something other than the given instructions–I never thought that FireFox was a *strong* possible *cause*, but rather a *symptom*), and no other reports that you attempted other options, and/or reports of the any results–positive or negative.

        Monitor is and has been at native resolution of 1440×900, …

        That comment caught my eye from the beginning. That’s an older *standard* for display resolutions, and probably is not used much currently–when web design is being developed–other more common standards are probably used. Source of possible problems–who knows? One would have to adjust and play around with this to see if there are any effects. (Isn’t your desktop monitor a cathode ray tube (CRT) design? I can not remember. Analog or digital input from the desktop?)

        … as mentioned, screen res is unchanged, set to native from the outset in both machines

        Just to be clear, I think your 2nd computer is a laptop–correct me if I’m wrong. But, if true, I hope you realize that you are comparing *apples to oranges*. The hardware is not the same! The video card or chips will be different on each machine. The dates of manufacture are most likely very different. The display will be different on each machine–stand alone monitor vs built-in laptop display (and hopefully, the native resolution of 1440×900 is not set the same on both machines). And, most likely because of the hardware differences, the video software drivers that Mint is using will be different on each machine as well.

        So, sure, one can look for similarities and differences–but who knows how various installed software from browsers to *musescore pkgs, a musical notation program which I have used for many years in Win7* will effect the display on each system.

        Just saying, *apples/oranges*!

        The adventure continues–good luck!

      • #2041826 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ jabeattyauditor

        Did slowpoke install any software when he replaced the mouse?

        Well, unless I’m interpreting this screen shot by @ Slowpoke47 incorrectly, no software was installed from Dec. 19th until Dec. 27th:

        In this machine, there was a long list of pkgs installed on 12/27/19 via the update function:

        Installed-Software-History

        Attachments:
      • #2041842 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        The failing mouse caused some sort of *mouse problems*, the display issue occurred at a separate time and cause *display problems*–these are unrelated events, barring introduction of evidence to the contrary.

        Did slowpoke install any software when he replaced the mouse?

        First, let me say that I am not blaming my mistakes on the failed mouse.  However, in retrospect, I can’t say at what point the mouse defects began, as it was a gradual process.  For a while before it went completely belly-up, responses to clicks were increasingly erratic, which I blamed on operator error at the time.  Also in the same time frame, other unwanted events happened on-screen which resulted in missing and relocated folders, which I haven’t been able to reverse.

        I’m sure my inexperience with Mint didn’t make matters any easier, but it has all been a learning process.  As with any new endeavor, context is key, and typically absorbed through exposure.

        PS- the NWS screen display in the new user account is in the same incorrect config as it has been in Mint from day one, and which the NWS tech told me last summer needed to be redone.  Interesting that the only positive resulting from my screwing up the original user account was the rectifying of that page (but still with mouse print).

         

         

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041861 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Just to be clear, I think your 2nd computer is a laptop–correct me if I’m wrong. But, if true, I hope you realize that you are comparing *apples to oranges*. The hardware is not the same! The video card or chips will be different on each machine. The dates of manufacture are most likely very different. The display will be different on each machine–stand alone monitor vs built-in laptop display (and hopefully, the native resolution of 1440×900 is not set the same on both machines). And, most likely because of the hardware differences, the video software drivers that Mint is using will be different on each machine as well.

        All well understood.  1440×900 is the native res in the desktop, offhand I don’t recall what native res is in the laptop, but it’s lower.  The advice I have received multiple times over the years is to use native unless there is some overarching reason to do otherwise.

        The out-of-the-box Mint install on the laptop, using the same stick as with the desktop, looks great.  On initial install on the desktop, it looked great as well.  Then I got my grubby mitts on it.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2041876 Reply
        PaulK
        AskWoody Lounger

        One consideration on creating a new Administrative user and switching over to it.

        On the occasions when I’ve brought up a new system (complete Windows from-scratch), the first User that I create is Admin. With it I do all the installations and tunings that I want, and any desired backups-in-case. THEN I create the true users’ logons. But, all the system-wide folders and files are owned by Admin. So ?

        Thus, were I to define an ‘Admin2’ and delete the original Admin as a user, I would find that the system stuff is now somewhat orphaned. Yes, Admin2 can still deal with it, but to clean things up I would need to have Admin2 ‘Take Ownership’ of everything that heretofore has been owned by Admin.

        In principal there may be Registry changes, and other commands, that would circumvent this, but they are for the truly internals-knowledgeable users. (People in glass windows are well advised not to throw stones. Broken windows are no fun to deal with.)

        Edit: I just read a post in another thread that illustrates what one may see when a User-ID no longer exists.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2041974 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          Are you referring to a Windows OS or Linux?

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

          • #2042186 Reply
            PaulK
            AskWoody Lounger

            (complete Windows from-scratch)

            This was intended as a cautionary consideration inspired by this post.

            IF a Linux Administrative user ‘owns’ things the way Windows does, then what happens when that user is deleted?

            Perhaps your sequence of proposed operations makes this moot.

            • #2042191 Reply
              Ascaris
              AskWoody_MVP

              F a Linux Administrative user ‘owns’ things the way Windows does, then what happens when that user is deleted?

              In Linux, an administrator account operates under its own username (like “steve” for Slowpoke47) with standard permissions until superuser permissions are requested.  The difference between a standard account and an admin account is that the admin account can use its own credentials to elevate to elevate permissions, while a standard user cannot.

              When the elevated permissions are granted, the ‘root’ account is used.  ‘root’ always exists and cannot be deleted, whether or not it is possible to actually log in to a session as ‘root’.  There does always have to be at least one administrator account, though, but they’re all functionally the same… when doing admin tasks, they’re ‘root’.

              Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.20.4 User Edition)

              1 user thanked author for this post.
              • #2042247 Reply
                mn–
                AskWoody Lounger

                When the elevated permissions are granted, the ‘root’ account is used.  ‘root’ always exists and cannot be deleted, whether or not it is possible to actually log in to a session as ‘root’.  There does always have to be at least one administrator account, though, but they’re all functionally the same… when doing admin tasks, they’re ‘root’.

                Oh yes, there’s a funny mostly historical thing about it though…

                See, internally for traditional permissions and such, what is meaningful is the numeric user id. For root, this uid is 0. This is what is stored as the file owner on disk, etc.

                It at least used to be possible to have more than one /etc/passwd (or networked user database) entry with the same uid, these could have different names… and passwords, home directories and login shells.

                Permissions checks would go by numeric id so they’d all have equal permissions, except back-references would go to whichever was found first in the passwd lookup. So, have to pay attention with scripting and such.

                This kind of thing with uid 0 became mostly unnecessary and very uncommon with the prevalence of sudo, so I wouldn’t trust it to not break things these days. Some BSDs used to use it a lot though. Also seen with malware and hacking so *should* cause alerts if unexpected.

                Nowadays when this thing is seen it’s most commonly an error in user management. Happens easily with networked/distributed user management… domain join, etc… if you aren’t watching for it. First symptom is usually that “ls” shows a different owner or group for your files (someone else was found first in numeric to text lookup).

                (and hopefully, the native resolution of 1440×900 is not set the same on both machines).

                Hey, could be worse, could be 1152×921 or the like.

                (That was the native resolution on exactly the thing where I last used an alternate uid 0 account… also had working DDC support through a 13W3 cable.)

                1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2042169 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        You probably need to look at your Mint OS as to how it handles video drivers and monitor screen resolution abilities. I know on Windows, I need to load the manufacturer’s video drivers so the Win OS *knows* what my video card is capable of, and then the video card can control the proper implementation of the various available resolutions. And the Win OS needs to know my specific monitor model in order to deliver resolutions that the monitor is expecting to see.

        How does Mint handle that?

        Are you currently using *generic Mint video drivers*?

        Are you supposed to load specific drivers for your particular video hardware?

        If so, have you done that?

        Does Mint need to know your specific *monitor model* and its specific capabilities?

        Or is Mint operating using a *generic* monitor display profile?

        Do any of these links apply to your system(s)? Just askin’– I’ve never seen anything mentioned about this:

        https://linuxmint-installation-guide.readthedocs.io/en/latest/drivers.html (Have you used the *Driver Manager* to install any needed drivers?)

        http://doc-ok.org/?p=1739 (Scroll down to the *Graphics Card Driver Installation* section.)

        https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Notebook-Software-and-How-To-Questions/Linux-Video-Driver-for-Linux-Mint/td-p/7296308

        https://superuser.com/questions/1361410/installing-intel-graphics-driver-on-linux-mint

        Attachments:
      • #2042558 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        Okay, this rescue is officially abandoned due to user inexperience and frustration.  Many thanks to all who offered suggestions.  The workaround was to open a second Admin account, re-do the settings, etc and copy the user files into the new account.  All looks good.  The new account is set to open by default on bootup.  When I’m satisfied that everything needed from the original account is in fact copied over, I’ll delete it.

        I’m not a drinker, but after this, I’m reconsidering.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2078073 Reply
        Bill C.
        AskWoody Plus

        I hope this is not too late, but you said you were using the nVidia driver. If so, is it the current nVidia non-open source driver? I have seen this type of text issue in Windows with a video driver or its settings.

        Just FYI, my Mint 19.3 install did not like the Open Source Nouveau driver for my nVidia card.

        Do you have under Firefox Options, Performance, the “Use Recommended Settings” checked. If so uncheck it and see if the sub-menu that appears “Use hardware acceleration when available” is checked. If it is, uncheck it and restart Firefox and see if it is fixed. It may be an acceleration issue, especially if the fonts are set custom.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2084041 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          Thanks for posting.  Both user accounts have the ‘recommended settings’ option checked.  The new account displays properly.  Unchecked this option in each account, no observed changes to display in either case.  Note that faulty display in the original account is not limited to FF, although it is not universal, i.e. not on all screens.  Also, appears more pronounced on some screens, but most apparent online.

          After using the new (admin) account for a week or so, I see that it is not in fact the equal of the original account, vis-a-vis automatic restart after ‘suspend’ for one example.  My original intent to delete the first account may not be wise- apparently all admin accounts are not equal.  Now mulling over copying files (not too many on this OS as yet) to an external target and reinstalling the OS using the original stick.

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2084678 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        My original intent to delete the first account may not be wise- apparently all admin accounts are not equal.

        I think someone warned you that there might be *permission* issues when you copy files from the old admin user account to a new admin user account. In Windows, there is a way to *take ownership* of files that were previously from another user. I don’t know how that may work on Linux Mint. Also, there are *admins* and then there are * other admins*. As I read, Linux Mint has user *groups*–I’m betting that the original admin has *full admin* privileges, whereas new admin users may be a step down–maybe the new admin account can be upgraded to the same privileges as that *original admin*–but, I don’t know how that needs to happen, or if it can?

        So, now you know more about what problem(s) can occur when adding new user accounts, and hoping to delete old user accounts.

        Now mulling over copying files (not too many on this OS as yet) to an external target and reinstalling the OS using the original stick.

        What has happened to *Plan A*–creating regular system hard drive (HDD) backup images, so that if something goes wrong with the OS, it’s settings, or bad program installs, or OS or program updates, then restore the most recent image that was just before the problem(s) began?

        In the last 20 years, or so, since beginning to use image backups, I have never done an *OS re-install* as a way to deal with problems that crop up from system updates, or bad program installs, or program updates, or OS or program wrong setting issues–but, I have done many image restores to solve an unsolvable problem!

        Based on this screen shot here: OS system image backups

        you have an OS system image backup dated 2019-12-23–the week before you started having problems, on or about 12/27/2019. Why not restore that image file to see if that resolves whatever problem(s) was (were) introduced during the next week, or so?

        Before doing that, you should determine if there are any new files created since that 2019-12-23 image date that you want to protect–you’re looking for any document files, photos, etc. that you have created and saved. These would need to be moved onto a separate storage device, such as your external USB HDD–create a folder for your files that you want to preserve and protect from the image restore–because everything after the 2019-12-23 image creation date will be wiped out when that file is restored to the OS partition.

        But, maybe you just want to *Start Over*. In which case–have at it! Everything will be *wiped out* since you started using the Linux Mint OS, and you will start afresh …

        As a side recommendation–I try to disable all *automatic updates* for any major OSs, and/or major programs (such as Firefox, or other browsers, or word processors (MS Office for example), etc.), so that I can control when and what is going to happen, and when.

        Also, if I am planning on installing any new programs,

        Or, if I am planning on uninstalling any old program(s),

        Or, if I am planning on making any major program setting changes to either the OS, or programs,

        Or if I am planning on experimenting with any OS or program settings,

        Or, if I am planning on deleting multiple OS or program files (for whatever reason),

        I first create an image HDD file as *protection* from any unexpected problems that may, and can, and do happen … whenever working with a computer!

        Because, then I know I can recover, and go back to just prior to making any changes, and start from there, again, and again, and again–as needed.

        • #2085790 Reply
          Slowpoke47
          AskWoody Plus

          Thanks for your effort.  When/if you actually install a Linux distro, the answers to many of the questions you are asking will be evident.

          No question that you are infinitely more versed in Windows than I, but Mint comes with a different learning curve in some respects, which can lead to errors.  The reason for my do-over is that there are assorted “mistakes” in this install that I have not succeeded in reversing, or even know how to.  There are likely some hidden pitfalls I have introduced via my own lack of Mint experience.

          Since the installation is reasonably easy, even with the dual boot, I’m better off to start with a clean slate than to chase demons, known and unknown. My understanding of Mint is much better since I started with that OS, and I expect to have a decent shot at a clean install, having done it twice already.

          Today I have loaded the few Mint files so far accumulated on an ext. disk and confirmed that they are readily restored.  With the Win7 drive unplugged as a precaution (since Mint, by default, also opens the Win7 disk upon bootup), I am about to re-install the Mint OS, overwriting the original.

          Hoping for a successful outcome.

          Linux Mint Mate 19.2

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2085868 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        My understanding of Mint is much better since I started with that OS, and I expect to have a decent shot at a clean install, having done it twice already.

        I think it’s a good bet that you will have a successful new install–it’s what come after that will be the challenge.

        But, you are missing an opportunity to be better prepared to recover from problems in the future …

        I have not seen a report by you that you have ever successfully burned the Veeam Recovery Media to a thumb drive or optical disc. Have you? You may have reported this, and I may have missed it.

        Also, I have not seen a report by you that you have attempted, and/or succeeded in doing an image restore of your Mint OS using the Veeam software. And, if you have done a restore, whether that eliminated what appears to be a display software driver problem–from unknown source (i.e. operator error, or other software install, or software updating–OS or other program(s)).

        Once you demonstrate successful use of the Veeam Rescue Media, and a successful restore of the image file, and determined if that restored image eliminates the display problem–then if it’s your intention to do a clean re-install of the Mint OS–go for it.

        And, you can actually still do the above testing of the Veeam image software, even if you have already done a re-install of the Mint OS. 1. Simply boot to the Veeam Rescue Media, 2. Use Veeam to create a backup image of the newly re-installed Mint OS (to be used shortly after the next couple steps), 3. then, restore that 2019-12-23 image file , 4. boot to the restored *old* Mint OS and check to see that the display problem is now gone, 5. re-boot to the Veeam Rescue Media, 6. and restore the image of your new re-installed Mint OS.

        Now you will know you can use and depend on the Veeam image backups to rescue your system from a bad situation.

        If you’re not willing to do that, you might as well not waste your time creating Veeam image backups–they will be useless for you.

        The adventure continues ….

      • #2085902 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        I think it’s a good bet that you will have a successful new install–it’s what come after that will be the challenge.

        All complete, settings replicated, printer/scanner all back fully functional, no sweat generated during these operations.

        I have not seen a report by you that you have ever successfully burned the Veeam Recovery Media to a thumb drive or optical disc. Have you? You may have reported this, and I may have missed it.

        Yep- you missed it!

        Also, I have not seen a report by you that you have attempted, and/or succeeded in doing an image restore of your Mint OS using the Veeam software.

        Nope- didn’t happen, due to the likely onset of difficulties before the first backup was made.

        If you’re not willing to do that, you might as well not waste your time creating Veeam image backups–they will be useless for you.

        Those backups are most likely tainted from the beginning.  You may recall that, in a new Mint environment, I couldn’t be sure just when the mouse (that eventually went obviously belly-up) first began to fail, as I thought initially that the problem was operator deficiency.  This turned out to be wrong, as shown by the eventual funeral.  “Frankenmouse” developed a mind of its own, but I’ll never know starting when.  My solution renders that question moot.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

      • #2085990 Reply
        Just Lurking
        AskWoody Plus

        @ Slowpoke47

        Nope- didn’t happen, due to the likely onset of difficulties before the first backup was made. ….. Those backups are most likely tainted from the beginning.

        Well, I think you’re missing my *point*. I could care less if those backups were (are?) tainted by anything. They are image backups at different points in time when you were still using your then install of Mint. You were not complaining about any *display* problems.

        My *point* was (is?) (I’m recommending a *teaching moment*), you should demonstrate that you can successfully restore an image of your Mint OS using the Veeam Rescue Media, and confirm that the display problem was not present in the restored image of your Mint OS.

        What you did (do?) after that is strictly up to you! Re-install a clean Mint OS over the *tainted Mint OS*, or whatever ……

        … printer/scanner all back fully functional, …

        That’s good to hear! You went through so many attempts when you were first trouble shooting this problem–it was never completely clear what made the scanning suddenly work. What was the technique used to make this happen so quickly this time?

        Sounds like you’re on your way again–good luck.

      • #2086000 Reply
        Slowpoke47
        AskWoody Plus

        You were not complaining about any *display* problems.

          At that point, I was chasing the issue, well before I gave up and came whining about it.

        What was the technique used to make this happen so quickly this time?

        Actually, when I got it working the last time, the key came from a (I think) non-tech on the tech-heavy Mint forum.  Long story short, he found a crucial bit of HP software, a plugin, that was not shown as being officially available on the HP site. I think it may have been buried under a stack of old magazines in the closet:-)  With that, the print/scan functions were up and running in about 10 minutes, I just mostly watched, with occasional Terminal input.

        I’ll shortly re-install Veeam and start backing up the new, sanitized OS.  For the record, I do actually have experience, in Windows, at restoring a system, most recently after my blunder last fall, but in the past as well.

        Linux Mint Mate 19.2

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