Since an update a couple of days ago, I have the same symptoms.
I log in normally, the desktop appears (with icons) but nothing else.
With right mouse click I can open a terminal, but windows have no
borders and no menus.
I removed my ~/.config/dconf and .config/compiz-1 and checked my
.XAuthority permissions, but the problem subsists.
My .xsession-errors only contain this:
openConnection: connect: No such file or directory
cannot connect to brltty at :0
I'm running Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS
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Login Successful, Desktop Never Loads
Status in at-spi2-core package in Ubuntu:
Here is what I encounter
1. Boot computer, boot proceeds normally
2. Reach standard Ubuntu login screen, nothing seems to be amiss
3. Enter user name and password
4. Login disappears, just see the pink "Ubuntu 14.04" background
The desktop never loads, not even after ~30 minutes. The launcher
never appears, and the Desktop background never changes to the user-
* Cursor works fine, it can be moved around the screen
* No error messages pop up
* ALT+F1 etc. can be used to switch to different TTYs; all files on the
system appear to be intact
* Print screen button works (I will upload a screen shot when I get a chance
to copy it onto a USB drive)
* Hitting power button pops up a window prompting the user to decide whether
to shut down
* CTRL+ALT+DELETE prompts the user to log out
* Desktop does not load on any user accounts, including the guest account
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