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I've recently downloaded the 18.04 server version and installed it on a couple of VMs. On first boot after installation, here are the contents of my /etc/apt/sources.list

deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu bionic main
deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu bionic-security main
deb http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu bionic-updates main

Shouldn't it be longer? I've seen a number of supposed standard examples of the file, including both universe and multiverse repos.

How do I fix it? Does it have something to do with the options chosen during the interactive install, or is there something wrong with the official distribution? Any way to fix it right away outside of recompiling the iso?

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    It is valid but contains only the main repository. You can experiment with other options on repogen.simplylinux.ch. – Melebius Sep 3 '18 at 8:11
  • @Melebius so it is supposed to be this short? Any way to change it without manual edits after the fact? – Heagon Sep 3 '18 at 8:14
  • @Melebius hmm, strange, I swear I didn't notice anything outside of specifying the location-based repos. And I don't remember this issue with any previous version of Ubuntu Server. Anyway, thanks for your answer! – Heagon Sep 3 '18 at 8:29
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    Are you sure you didn't use a minimal image; as they reduce size by removing documentation (comments in this file). – guiverc Sep 3 '18 at 8:41
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You seem to have chosen something like “only the main repository” during the OS installation or are affected by a known bug.

If it’s not what you like, you should edit the file with the contents you want. You should check What is the correct output of cat /etc/apt/sources.list and/or the Ubuntu Sources List Generator for what the file can contain.

Any way to change it without manual edits after the fact?

You could use a GUI application to manage repositories in the Desktop edition. In the Server edition (without GUI), you can still use the contents from the generator or another Ubuntu machine. Anyway, manually editing configuration files is the default way in the Server edition.

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Inspired by the comment left by @guiverc I've checked the website more thoroughly, only to realize, that by default on https://www.ubuntu.com/download/server ubuntu offers the "live" version of the system. Digging deeper, one can find the so-called "alternative downloads" and, eventually, this page: http://cdimage.ubuntu.com/releases/18.04.1/release/

Downloading the regular version, not marked with "live" affix, I got the proper installer, which sets the sources.list to its proper contents.

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