Best way to unlock computer?

New to linux this year, Ubuntu 18.04 on this machine and Mint Cinnamon on another.

I tend to have a lot of windows open and Ubuntu locks up occasionally. on MS it was Ctrl+Alt+Del. Is there a better way to unlock other than just hard starting the machine via power button?

I don’t seem to have any ill-effects from hard starting, but would do it the preferred method if it exists

What do you mean by locks up? Do you mean that the desktop locks due to the inactivity or the whole system freezes?

system freezes, the only thing I can do is hard restart with the pc power button

Hi Hines_Figher,

That does not seem like normal operation. I can think of two situations that could fit your case:

1.) The display manager freezes, and will not respond to anything
2.) The machine’s experiencing such a big load it can’t answer to anything in a timely manner.

In case 1, you can still access your machine with ssh (we have a guide on enabling ssh on Ubuntu 18.04). In such a freezing situation, if you are able to log in with ssh, and the system does not show high load or swapping, the graphical session should be investigated further.

In case 2, you may not be able to login even with ssh, but you would get at least an error message that would help us getting closer to the root cause. A machine that is completely frozen will not respond to even a ping request, while an overloaded one should, given enough time. Also in this case you should hear the cooling fans as loudly as possible for the given model.

In either case if you are able to log in with ssh, you can query system load with the uptime command, and check memory usage with free to see if some resource is to blame about the situation.

I have enabled SSH per the guide. However I do not understand how I get to the terminal to log in with SSH if I cannot do anything on said computer.


The idea here is to be able to login using any other computer and the network whether it is another Linux or MS windows host using Putty. What @sandmann meant is that you try to login if your computer freezes again AND if only the GUI is frozen. This way you can investigate in more detail on what is going on.

Is you system up to date? Have your updated your system?

I use Livepatch and it is up to date. Guess I gotta find out how to use Putty from my Mint machine

On your Mint machine you don’t really need Putty. Just open a terminal, type:

$ ssh <username-on-ubuntu>@<IP address of ubuntu>

The cliens will ask if the fingerprint of the remote machine is okay, answer with ‘yes’, provide the remote machine’s password, and you are logged in.

got connected with ssh just have to wait until ubuntu locks up again