How to solve the error "failed to launch Terminal" failed to execute child process GNOME-Terminal ( No such file or directory ) ? Please HELP us to solve this error. Currently I have upgraded Python to 3.7 version.

I have tried opening by clicking Alt+F2 and entered "gnome-terminal" but that too failed.

I tried "sudo apt-get purge gnome-terminal" in a shell opened on clicking "Ctrl + Alt + F3" keys which removed my terminal from the system

And then ran "sudo apt-get install gnome-terminal", I got terminal back but with the same error.

  • 1
    It sounds like you might have accidentally uninstalled gnome-terminal. Have you tried typing xterm into the Alt+F2 box instead? – tu-Reinstate Monica-dor duh Oct 13 '18 at 8:29
  • I tried to open Xterm but in vain. Xterm itself not opening. – What If Oct 13 '18 at 8:39
  • Can you get to a console with CTRL+ALT+F3 or F4? Once in the console, log in and type sudo apt update and then sudo apt install --reinstall ubuntu-desktop which will reinstall all the required packages. Then you can get back to the GUI with CTRL+ALT+F1 or F2. – tu-Reinstate Monica-dor duh Oct 13 '18 at 8:45
  • Did it and same problem continues – What If Oct 13 '18 at 8:57
  • 1
    post as answer @tudor – What If Oct 13 '18 at 9:18

After many attempts,

I found the cause of issue. Python upgraded to version 3.7 and lost its version 3.5

sudo apt-get install python3.5

Above command installed python 3.5 which is used to run terminal by Ubuntu 18.04 by default.


Uninstalling Python 3.5 causes removal of terminal, desktop, firefox and some applications in Ubuntu.

Better don't do it.

Carefully upgrade/install python versions.


The gnome-terminal requires python 3.5. The highest probability is that you could have messed with python 3.5 which comes readily installed with Ubuntu 18.04. You can check your default python version using

python --version

If python3.5 not listed here you can check

ls /usr/bin/python*

If its still not among the list then install it from this link

In case python 3.5 is installed in your system, you would want to reinstall it.

Lastly if you still cannot open the terminal try reinstalling gnome-terminal like this

sudo apt-get install --reinstall gnome-terminal

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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