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Uninstall GUI from Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

I installed Ubuntu 14.04 LTS on my development machine. I don’t want GUI, i could download Ubuntu Server ISO and install it, but i have ISO for Ubuntu Desktop, so i decided to install Ubuntu normally, then un-install GUI.

First i removed lightdm and rebooted, now Ubuntu boot with out GUI.

apt-get purge -y lightdm
reboot

I had to press CTRL+ALT+F2 to get into login screen. But most part, i used SSH to login, so it is not a problem for me.

I uninstalled all unwanted packages one by one, i rebooted in between to make sure everything worked properly.

apt-get purge -y xterm
apt-get purge -y xorg*
apt-get purge -y x11-apps
apt-get purge -y unity*
apt-get purge -y x11-common
apt-get purge -y x11-utils
apt-get purge -y x11-session-utils x11-xfs-utils x11-xkb-utils x11-xserver-utils
apt-get purge -y gnome-*
apt-get purge -y totem-common
apt-get purge -y gir1.2-totem-plparser-1.0 libtotem-plparser18
apt-get purge -y xdg-utils xdiagnose xinput xdg-user-dirs-gtk xdg-user-dirs
apt-get purge -y apport apport-symptoms python3-apport bluez bluez-cups bluez-alsa brasero-common brltty
apt-get purge -y desktop-file-utils gedit gedit-common gir1.2-freedesktop gir1.2-notify-0.7 gsettings-desktop-schemas 
apt-get purge -y libfile-basedir-perl libfile-desktopentry-perl python-xdg python3-xdg remmina* sound-theme-freedesktop ubuntu-settings
apt-get purge -y adium-theme-ubuntu dmz-cursor-theme gtk2-engines-murrine gtk3-engines-unico hicolor-icon-theme 
apt-get purge -y plymouth-theme-ubuntu-logo plymouth-theme-ubuntu-text ubuntu-sounds ubuntu-ui-toolkit-theme xcursor-themes
apt-get purge -y gir1.2-gstreamer-1.0 gstreamer* 
apt-get purge -y espeak*
apt-get purge -y evolution-data-server-common
apt-get purge -y firefox*
apt-get purge -y gconf*
apt-get purge -y file-roller
apt-get purge -y gamin
apt-get purge -y metacity-common
apt-get purge -y fonts-tlwg-mono
apt-get purge -y nautilus*
apt-get purge -y pulseaudio*
apt-get purge -y policykit*
apt-get purge -y rhythmbox*
apt-get purge -y printer*
apt-get purge -y tracker*
apt-get purge -y transmission*
apt-get purge -y ubuntu-wallpapers*
apt-get purge -y update-manager*
apt-get purge -y usb-creator*
apt-get purge -y  update-notifier*
apt-get purge -y  yelp*
apt-get purge -y  zenity*
apt-get purge -y cups-browsed cups-bsd cups-client  cups-common cups-core-drivers  cups-daemon cups-filters cups-filters-core-drivers cups-pk-helper cups-ppdc cups-server-common
apt-get purge -y libcups2 libcupscgi1 libcupsfilters1  libcupsimage2 libcupsmime1 libcupsppdc1 python-cupshelpers python-cups
apt-get purge -y ubuntuone-client-data
apt-get purge -y apparmor
apt-get purge -y libqt4*
apt-get purge -y qtchooser qtcore4-l10n qtdeclarative5-ubuntu-ui-extras-browser-plugin-assets
apt-get purge -y libdbusmenu-qt5 oxideqt-codecs
apt-get purge -y example-content empathy-common
apt-get purge -y indicator*
apt-get purge -y parted
apt-get purge -y nano notify-osd-icons speech-dispatcher-audio-plugins sphinx-voxforge-hmm-en sphinx-voxforge-lm-en
apt-get purge -y whoopsie whoopsie-preferences libwhoopsie-preferences0 libwhoopsie0
apt-get autoremove -y

During the uninstall of packages, it removed network manager and eth0 lost its IP, so i run following command in console to get SSH access back.

ifconfig eth0 192.168.1.132

That was the IP used by the ubuntu install. To make IP permanent, i edited /etc/network/interfaces

vi /etc/network/interfaces

Added

auto eth0
iface eth0 inet static
address 192.168.1.100
gateway 192.168.1.1
dns-nameservers 8.8.8.8 8.4.4.4

cat /etc/network/interfaces

root@ubuntu:~# cat /etc/network/interfaces
# interfaces(5) file used by ifup(8) and ifdown(8)
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

auto eth0
iface eth0 inet static
address 192.168.1.100
gateway 192.168.1.1
dns-nameservers 8.8.8.8 8.4.4.4
root@ubuntu:~#

Now on reboot, Ubuntu comes up with proper IP, No GUI.


Posted in Ubuntu

  • mike

    Hello Mate,

    Thanks for this I was stripping back an Nvidia Jetson board to get rid of all the chuff and found this useful.

    One thing that makes your Networking thing a lot easier is to simply:

    1. Create the /etc/network/interface file at the beginning
    2. apt-get purge -y network-manager && reboot

    Then pretty much you get rid of network manager straight away and reboot immediately to get back to SSH.

    Cheers

    Mike

  • Paul Godden

    Nice post! I’ve got a second (v old) PC that has XP on it, that I wanted to dual boot – just for running a webserver on the local network on. This guide was perfect to help ditch the GUI!

    I had problems uninstalling lightdm initially though – I used ps-ef | grep bin/X from a console which showed that lightdm was still running. Killing X sorted that out.

    Regarding your (long) list of commands. I copied the whole lot and dumped them in a file which I made executable and ran. Go away and make a cup of tea and when you come back, all gone =)

    Cheers!