I believe my question says what I am trying to achieve.

Steps I tried to make gdm my default display manager:

  1. sudo dpkg-reconfigure than select gdm as my default.
  2. Edit /etc/X11/default-display-manager and change its content to


After the above two steps I logged out myself and after that when I see my login screen it still shows lightdm as my display manager.

What am I doing wrong here.?


1 Answer 1


You seem to have configured gdm correctly, but you did not actually stop lightdm. Logging out doesn't stop it.

After doing sudo dpkg-reconfigure gdm, you need to stop lightdm

sudo service lightdm stop

and start gdm

sudo service gdm start

Hope this helps.

  • 3
    Note: This kills the session. Stopping the a display manager while running a desktop session will also kill your desktop environment.
    – f.ardelian
    Dec 14, 2014 at 21:30
  • 1
    A lot of damage by following these steps. stop on lightdm gave me blank non X screens.. Crazy.
    – Siddharth
    Feb 28, 2015 at 16:47

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