Having had several attempts to get Ubuntu 18 to mount a usb drive when it is plugged in, irrespective of whether there is a GUI based user present or not, I feel that I am out of luck. From what I can see the udev service has no problem creating device files when the usb key is placed into the usb slot, but for some reason the udisks2 service will only mount the file system when I log in via the GUI. The reason seems to be stated here and the solution seems to be available here
That said it does not work on my Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS
If there is anyone out there who could outline a specific set of instructions that will work for this version I would be very grateful.
Is there something particular about polkit on Ubuntu 18 that I am missing??
PS) A possible work-around involves setting up a udev rule to mount the usb drive explicitly after it has created a device under /dev but I can't seem to get this to work either. It's very fiddley.
Any help welcome.