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I decided to upgrade my home server to Ubuntu 11.10 from 10.04. Instead of upgrading to the server version, it upgraded to the desktop version, or something similar to it. I assume this is because I had GNOME installed to manage certain features through VNC (Linux noob here). So how do I get it to stop booting to the desktop and get rid of all the additional GUI stuff it installed with the upgrade?

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migrated from Mar 10 '12 at 8:17

This question came from our site for system and network administrators.

Do you just want to get back to gnome? sudo apt-get install gnome-shell – G Koe Mar 10 '12 at 8:07
I believe that is what I had in the first place, but the update added more (like Unity). Will running that again get rid of the other desktop stuff and let my server boot into CmdLine again? – Matchlighter Mar 10 '12 at 17:20

not sure about the newest version, but "apt-get remove ubuntu-desktop --purge" was how I did it the last time I messed up.

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It tells me that Ubuntu-desktop is not installed. I noticed that it was updating x11 when it was updating to 11.10 (Which I know has to do with GUIs). Can I safely remove x11? – Matchlighter Mar 10 '12 at 17:18
Removing just x11 might cause a few things to break (lots of errors), but the system should still boot to a console login. I would make sure that GDM is removed/disabled first, but that's personal preference. (GDM == gnome desktop manager, the graphical login system) – eldorel Mar 10 '12 at 17:33

remove all desktop environments you may have installed, by using "apt-get remove" command. However, thats not the only thing you will have to consider. A server system has a different set of configuration or way of doing things. For instance, a server almost always requires a higher usage of swap-memory as overall performance is more important. On the other hand, relatively less swap memory is needed by a desktop system where quick response-time is more appreciated by the user. You can check the "swappiness" setting of your Linux kernel by issuing the below command in the terminal:

sysctl vm.swappiness

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