1

Let's consider that we have downloaded network boot mini.iso (real Ubuntu version does not matter, but LTS is better).

How should I install minimal but functional MATE Desktop Environment from it?

2

You have two options here:

  • Select Ubuntu MATE minimal desktop on package/task selection page.
  • Install minimal system and then install all needed packages with tasksel:

    sudo tasksel install ubuntu-mate-core
    

The resulting system will be small (about 4 Gb), but functional.
You can then adjust this basement to suite your needs.

Notes:

  1. if you have at least 8.6 Gb of disk space - you can use official Ubuntu MATE installer and select minimal installation in it.
  2. if you are interested in installing the full MATE DE - it is installable from other task package named ubuntu-mate-desktop^ - see my other answer.
  3. do not use tasksel to remove packages from the system (see this post for details)!

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