Apparently this bug doesn’t get everybody, but it smacked me right across the chops.
Google Earth has caught signal 11.
We apologize for the inconvenience, but Google Earth has crashed. This is a bug in the program, and should never happen under normal circumstances. A bug report and debugging data have been written to this text file:
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Well, damn. Not what I was looking for Google. The <em>stacktrace from glibc</em> in the crash log didn't help a whole lot either.
Turns out it's a pretty easy fix. Apparently the startup tips inexplicably embeds a media player like flash or totem, and if the version isn't just right google-earth will collapse in a big ball of suck. Some folks seem to have varying luck with removing/changing flash or mozilla-totem and whatnot, but the easiest thing to do is just to disable the tool tips.
Head into ~/.config/Google. Open up GoogleEarthPlus.conf in your favorite text editor, find the line:
[crayon lang="default"] enableTips=true
and change it to:
[crayon lang=”default”] enableTips=false
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Root owned my Google folder for some reason (might have tried running it as root after one of my curse-riddled reinstalls). If so, just chown that sucker first: