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How to fix Ubuntu can’t open terminal problem

by David
How to fix Ubuntu can't open terminal problem

You cannot open the terminal on your Ubuntu machine. What can you do? Although this problem rarely occurs, it is a fact that the problem exists and can happen to you at any time. Read on to know what to do when your Ubuntu machine can’t open its terminal.

Missing the icon?

If you only miss the icon from which you used to run the terminal, it does not mean that the terminal itself has disappeared. You can find it among other installed applications, via the Ubuntu activities menu.

press the To win and start typing “terminal” in the search field to find it. Click on it to execute it.

To add it back to your desktop dock, right-click the icon and select “Add to Favorites”.

Ubuntu Cant Open Terminal Add to favorites

Maybe it’s even better to memorize the combination Ctrl + Alt + T on your keyboard. If you try it, you will see your terminal appear.

Is there a software conflict?

If the problem appeared after installing new software, it may be a software conflict. It’s rare, but it does happen, and there can be millions of reasons, depending on each unique combination of software installed. The simplest solution is to undo our last steps.

Start by uninstalling everything you’ve installed just before the problem turns ugly. Hopefully the problem will be solved.

Ubuntu Cant Open Terminal Uninstall SoftwareUbuntu Cant Open Terminal Uninstall Software

If the problem persists, you can try more drastic measures, like restoring your entire system from a recent backup. If you are using the latest version of Ubuntu installed with ZFS, you can easily restore a ZFS snapshot. You can then reimplement these changes one at a time until you find the culprit, and then cancel this problematic step.

Ubuntu Cant Open Terminal Revert To Past SnapshotUbuntu Cant Open Terminal Revert To Past Snapshot

It should be noted that one of the most common conflicts concerns the installation of Python. If the problem appeared after upgrading to the latest version of Python, it may be because the terminal is not configured to use it.

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To resolve the problem, try updating the reference to Python in the terminal. Access one of the TTY terminals with integrated security by pressing Ctrl + Alt + F3 at a time. Log in to this location again, and enter:

Then change:


Of course, if you’ve installed an even newer version of Python, you’ll need to update the above and modify it accordingly.

Is the terminal configuration changed?

If the problem appeared after trying to change something in the terminal configuration and you know what the problem is, you can use the fail-safe terminal to try to repair the damage.

To access the TTY security terminal, press Ctrl + Alt + F3 at a time. Log in, then try to cancel the changes you have applied to your normal terminal via it.

For a more user-friendly adjustment of your terminal configuration via the graphical interface, install Dconf-Editor with:

Ubuntu Cant Open Terminal Install Dconf EditorUbuntu Cant Open Terminal Install Dconf Editor

Once installed, run Dconf-Editor and recognize the warning that appears by clicking on “I’ll be careful”.

Ubuntu Cant Open Terminal Use Dconf EditorUbuntu Cant Open Terminal Use Dconf Editor

Go to “/ org / gnome / terminal / legacy” and restore the settings you changed.

If the problem appeared after changing your profile settings in your terminal, you can easily reset them to the default values. Go to one of the ATS terminals (use Ctrl + Alt + F3) and enter:

Note, however, that this will remove all profiles from gnome-terminal and return the default profile to its original settings.

Reinstall or use an alternative

While this is closer to the way you would solve the problem if you were using Windows, you can try uninstalling and reinstalling your terminal. Move to the TTY terminal with integrated security using Ctrl + Alt + F3 and enter:

Then reinstall it with:

Finally, if nothing works, you can still use an alternative terminal emulator, like Guake and Tilix:

You can then use them instead of the default terminal, and you will still have built-in ATS security as a backup.

Ubuntu Cant Open Terminal Installer GuakeUbuntu Cant Open Terminal Installer Guake

Without the terminal, you won’t be able to search the web and find information about packages, which can be very frustrating. Have you ever encountered such a problem with the default terminal which made it unusable? Tell us in the comments section below.

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