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Is there any way I can install a minimal version of Ubuntu (GUI-less) so that it would closely resemble the Ubuntu set up you get when you get a standard AWS EC2 system?

is there a better choice that using https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/MinimalCD ? If not, what else needs to be installed on the Minimal system to get it closer to the EC2 instance?

I will be installing this in an Oracle VB environement with the eventual intent of running Docker containers and possibly a CI/CD system for personal development. I simply want to learn how to configure all these tools/systems prior to doing in an an actual live, paid system.

TIA

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You have to download the Ubuntu Server image https://www.ubuntu.com/server and install it on your virtual machine. This image doesn't ship with a GUI, only console.

Edit: There actually is a beautiful instruction on how to install Ubuntu on your own machine: https://tutorials.ubuntu.com/tutorial/tutorial-install-ubuntu-server

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