I have two Ubuntu systems. The first I'd like to use as a server. Hence I don't have a display or even keyboard for it. The other is my laptop and can connect to the network. Upon bootup, the "server" will go to a lightdm login screen.

First thing I'd like to do is connect my server to my network. But since I don't have a display for it, I'd like to do it somehow using my laptop. Is there a way I can just connect my laptop to the server using ethernet and then configure it? First step: how do I get "in", or bypass the login screen?


When your server boots up, even if you don't log in, it should be connected to the local network.

To log in, you should be able to use ssh:

ssh username@yourmachinename.local

If you'd like to run graphical apps on the server you can add X forwarding:

ssh -X username@yourmachine.local
  • The ssh command seems to work, but I can't answer the password query, even though I know the password is correct. Any ideas? Perhaps I need to reconfigure ssh? Apr 3 '12 at 8:03
  • Hmm that's odd. It's usually the username and password as you log on to the system with.
    – Alex
    Apr 4 '12 at 0:43
  • I marked your answer as the solution, as it seems to be one...even if for whatever reason, it doesn't quite work. Apr 5 '12 at 3:54
  • Still not working then? Try creating a new account on the machine, and ssh'ing in with that maybe (just to check whether it's an account problem). You could also try apt-cache policy openssh-server on the server to check that ssh is installed.
    – Alex
    Apr 5 '12 at 6:41
  • 1
    There could be something restrictive in your /etc/ssh/sshd_config making the user only allowed in from a certain IP range, only with Public Key, not with password authentication, or not on a whitelist of users who are allowed access. Apr 9 '12 at 14:46

Can also be that your trying to login as root, and its off by default, if so use your regular user

  • this is in reply to your ssh problems

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.