I have a dev machine that I use npm and node on. I have been having trouble with permissions issues and repeatedly tried uninstalling and working with nvm and other stuff. I'm not really looking for ways to solve that issue and would prefer to start from a clean slate. Is there a way to wipe everything from my system?

  • 3
    Ubuntu doesn't really have any "factory reset" as far as I know. If you want a fresh system, backup the files you want to keep and reinstall from scratch. – Byte Commander Jul 30 '19 at 14:58
  • @Pfap to expand on what ByteCommander said, the best way to accomplish this (and yes, this is preperation that must be done before installing, you would have to think ahead) , is to install /home on a seperate partition. you can then reinstall ubuntu but reusing your current home. some programs do install to home but you can easilly find their folders and delete them (as well as the configuration/preferences files for them and other applications) from your home. having done all this you'd be back at square one. (but having preserved music, videos, pictures and documents. – tatsu Jul 30 '19 at 15:08
  • When I mess things up, I simply insert the boot DVD and do an " Erase and Install " cleaning. It will give you whatever DVD / USB you put in. – user227495 Jul 30 '19 at 15:23
  • This question should be deleted as the only answer is to do a fresh install. – Pfrex Jul 30 '19 at 16:20

You can find the packages you installed with the terminal command:

comm -23 <(apt-mark showmanual | sort -u) <(gzip -dc /var/log/installer/initial-status.gz | sed -n 's/^Package: //p' | sort -u)

Removing those should bring you pretty much back to the install as far as packages are concerned. Of course, this wont fix permissions or remove anything you installed outside the packages system.

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