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I am on Fedora 16 KDE spin. Yesterday I ran the fsck command and that broke things. I can login via the tty, so I guess it has nothing to do with the shadow file. The login screen reappears after login no matter how many times I try to get past it. The permissions are the same as before. Also I have tried renaming the .kde folder. Doesn't help. This affects all the users, even root. My guess is the X server is restarting after login bringing me back to the login screen. Any way I can solve this?

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I think you should start by looking at ~/.xsession-errors and /var/log/messages –  Joseph R. Nov 8 '12 at 9:18
    
also /var/log/Xorg.1.log –  xenoterracide Nov 8 '12 at 16:25
    
Can you log in if you do single user mode? If you can't then your /etc/shadow file might be borked. –  sparticvs Nov 8 '12 at 18:17
    
You can also try to start X from sommand line with startx optionally redirecting its stdout and stderr: startx 2>startx.err 1>startx.log –  peterph Nov 8 '12 at 20:17
    
sorry for the late reply. It was the X server indeed. I followed what peterph said and the startx.err file had this, /usr/bin/ssh-agent: error while loading shared libraries: libfipscheck.so.1: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory. xinit: connection to X server lost. I have no idea what that means. I tried disabling ssh but it doesn't help. –  Phani Kumar Nov 9 '12 at 9:35

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Given your answers in the comments, the problem is that the program "ssh-agent" can't load the library libfipscheck which it needs in order to run. The quick fix is to edit your .xinitrc file and comment out the call to ssh-agent from it. The real fix is to re-install the package fipscheck-lib .

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Amazing! That did the trick. It was the /etc/X11/xinit/xinitrc-common file that had the SSH-AGENT line. –  Phani Kumar Nov 9 '12 at 15:00

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