Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free.

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 have a VPS that has Ubuntu 11.10 on it. Unfortunately, only the 11.10 Desktop (not server) image was available as an image to install your VPS with. How can I remove the packages included in the Desktop install, and, if needed, install the packages that only the server install has?

I've tried sudo apt-get remove ubuntu-desktop and then sudo apt-get autoremove. Unfortunately, that didn't work: it only removed 'libjudy-debian' (or something like that) which was installed from having 'miredo' installed at one point.

share|improve this question
up vote 6 down vote accepted

Right autoremove only removes packages that were installed automatically as part of other package installs. The things installed in the image are seeded and so all are basically considered "manual".

You'll probably get rid of most of them by getting rid of Xorg:

sudo apt-get remove xserver-xorg-core

And then do another autoremove.

There will likely be other things that are left around that you don't need.. but .. really.. why not just ask your VPS provider for a server image.. isn't it a little silly that they even offer the desktop image?

share|improve this answer
I was hoping there would be a better way, but thanks anyways. – Azendale Dec 7 '11 at 20:00

To remove x11 and everything that uses it, including all configuration:

apt-get purge libx11.* libqt.*

Unlike the accepted answer (remove xserver-xorg-core) this one will also remove all desktop packages like Firefox etc.

share|improve this answer
Will this remove xserver as the accepted answer? Or does that remove need to be done as well? – IanVaughan Feb 4 '15 at 23:17
Yes it will be removed. Do apt-get --assume-no remove libx11.* libqt.* to see all of the packages that will be removed. – bain Feb 6 '15 at 13:23
yes, i'm doing this now, it removes quite a lot more than the accepted answer and it's all things you don't want there anyway. – Benjamin Dec 21 '15 at 15:09

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.