Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I want to remove lxdm and start lxde with just startx or startlxde.

I previously just had an openbox installation and was building that up. I then installed lxde, but wanted to get rid of lxdm, so I uninstalled it. Upon doing so, typing startx or startlxde kicks me into the previous openbox session and not into the lxde session. How do I fix this?

share|improve this question

My understanding is that you've removed lxdm and booting into command line. Why not install another desktop manager, instead of lxdm ? For instance sudo apt-get install gdm or sudo apt-get install lightdm ? In fact, if you installed lxde after installing ubuntu, lightdm should be on your machine already. You chould switch to it with sudo dpkg-reconfigure lightdm and change the session from there.

You could also specify the default desktop session in the file /var/lib/AccountsService/users/yourusernamehere , specifically on line 12, where it says XSession

enter image description here

If what you want is to boot into command line and then start x server manually, here's what you can do:

Open /etc/default/grub with your favorite text editor (note, you must use sudo)

and edit line GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="text", which is in screenshot bellow is line 12

enter image description here

Save the file, run sudo update-grub and reboot once done. Once you boot up, you will be prompted to login into tty, run sudo service lightdm start, where lightdm is whatever greeter/desktop manager you want to use or have

Alternatively you could start openbox session with the following command: openbox --replace directly from lxde (wont work in tty)

Among other things, you could do sudo service lightdm start && openbox --replace as oneliner, or put it into a script

share|improve this answer

Your .xinitrc file will need to be changed to start lxde instead of openbox. Open a terminal, and type nano ~/.xinitrc. You should see a line that says "exec openbox-session". Comment that line out by adding a "#" as the first character. Then, add a line that says exec lxde-session.

The xinit manpage offers a more complete description of what this file does, but basically, it's the file that startx looks at to decide what to do, and what order to do it in. Here's the manpage for ubuntu's xinit file.

If that doesn't work, the LXDE wiki also has the following instructions on their wiki:

No display manager, use startx Run following command:

sudo update-alternatives --config x-session-manager

Then choose startlxde. The next time you run startx, LXDE will be started.

share|improve this answer
I'd came across the LXDE wiki article before and tried that. Also, edited .xinitrc and it says no lxde-session found when I try to run startx. Any other ideas? I have an auto and manual startlxde, and I believe I've tried both. – Noah Clark Jan 10 '13 at 0:42
Sorry to have kept you waiting. Maybe try re-installing lxde to see if any dependencies have gone missing? Please let us know what you've tried in the meantime, especially if you've gotten it to work. – Hank Gettinger Feb 1 '13 at 21:51

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.