I would like to change my "Device name" as shown in the settings panel. How do I do this?

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  • 1st answer worked fine for me on 14.04, many thanks
    – user277255
    May 2 '14 at 21:06

Execute the following command using a terminal:

sudo sed -i 's/present-host-name/new-host-name/' /etc/hosts
sudo sed -i 's/present-host-name/new-host-name/' /etc/hostname

You can check your present-host-name by cat /etc/hostname or hostname.

Then reboot the computer, to see the changes.

  • 3
    Only renaming the hostname change the device name in details. but There will be an error relating to hostname in each sudo command to terminal
    – Anwar
    Jul 6 '12 at 3:26
  • Thats right. I rewrote the description.
    – vine_user
    Jul 6 '12 at 5:57
  • Open a terminal and issue the command

    gksu gedit /etc/hosts
  • Then change the line   victor-System-Product-Name

    with    your-desired-name
  • Then also open the file /etc/hostname with command gksu gedit /etc/hostname and change the hostname there to reflect the new name.

  • Then reboot the computer, to see the changes

  • Or sudo hostname preferredname ?
    – Samik
    Jul 4 '12 at 15:00
  • @Samik, unfortunately sudo hostname preferredname won't work. I checked that. thanks
    – Anwar
    Jul 4 '12 at 15:07
  • 1
    Sorry, these steps don't work, but I guess it's good to change the etc/hosts file to reflect what is in etc/hostname anyway. Thanks.
    – Victor S
    Jul 4 '12 at 15:52
  • @VictorS, yes, only changing the hostname causes errors to be shown in terminal
    – Anwar
    Jul 6 '12 at 3:32

You can use the built in service hostnamectl

sudo hostnamectl set-hostname [NEW-HOSTNAME]

replacing [NEW-HOSTNAME] with the hostname you would like this should work immediately on most things but I would reboot for good measure.

  • 1
    very nice.. Changes are immediate..
    – UnKNOWn
    Aug 7 '20 at 16:47

Since there are plenty of ways to get something done here is one more:

While in your root directory:

cd /etc
sudo vi hostname  

Type in your admin password, press Enter.

Press i to 'insert' and change existing device name to the desired device name.

Press Esc and type :wq!, press Enter.

Restart the system for the change to take affect.


Run this command , it will open up Text editor

sudo gedit /etc/hostname 

Replace the present name to your Desired name. Save and close. Reboot for it to take effect.

  • Only changing the hostname, causes error to be shown on each sudo command to the terminal
    – Anwar
    Jul 6 '12 at 3:30
  • Thanks for noticing me about that , can you post the exact errors you see . According to Hostname man page Edit /etc/hostname for permanent change, even i tried this method and haven't encountered any such errors.
    – atenz
    Jul 6 '12 at 5:19
  • I edited /etc/hostname to a new name anwar from previous one anwar-precise. The error after rebooting the system and executing a sudo command is sudo: unable to resolve host anwar. It may be only warning. I executed sudo gedit command
    – Anwar
    Jul 6 '12 at 5:32
  • I searched for these and concluded you need to change both hosts and hostname to reflect complete changes , depending on maybe loopback , DNS , domain-name, resolv.conf. But its better to do changes in both of them. Yet i haven't encountered any such error ,must be different interface.
    – atenz
    Jul 6 '12 at 6:00

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