I've researched some for an answer to what seems a common question but I still need more help. I am a complete newbie.

I installed ubuntu 12.04.5 LTS on Oracle Virtualbox 64bit set up for ubuntu.

The only thing I've done on top of the default install is install the lsb_core. sudo apt_get install lsb-core

I was working through a tutorial that told me to try this: xload to which I get this: Error: Can't open display:

When I type echo $DISPLAY, all that is returned is a completely empty row. Most of my googling brought me to issues where the wrong value was displayed, not nothing.

I'm assuming I need to install some sort of graphical package. If that is correct I'm not sure how to select the correct one.

This is what the virtual box documentation says about the graphical device: The VirtualBox graphics device (sometimes referred to as VGA device) is, unlike nearly all other emulated devices, not based on any physical counterpart. It is a simple, synthetic device which provides compatibility with standard VGA and several extended registers used by the VESA BIOS Extensions (VBE).

  • The release in use went End Of Life on May 9, 2013. It is not advised that it be used in any way. – Stephen Michael Kellat Dec 31 '14 at 18:11
  • OK, thanks for that. I'm using some old notes that told me the specific version to install. I upgraded to 12.04.5 LTS and having the exact same issue. Question edited to reflect upgrade to 12.04.5. – Austin Dec 31 '14 at 19:28

Does the guide you're following tell you to run export DISPLAY.... For example, it might say export DISPLAY=:0. If it doesn't, try running that and then echo $DISPLAY.

  • It didn't say to do that, only to check the value as an example. When I try to export I get an error saying that DISPLAY:=0 is not a valid identifier. Here is the tutorial I was working through: linuxcommand.org/learning_the_shell.php – Austin Jan 5 '15 at 22:05
  • Wait, had my = and : swapped. Export assigns it! Slowly learning. – Austin Jan 5 '15 at 23:11
  • I did almost the exact same thing once. I was using export DISPLAY=0 instead of export DISPLAY=:0. Can barely notice the difference, right? It took me weeks to figure out that this is what I was doing wrong. So that fixed it then? – GreenRaccoon23 Jan 5 '15 at 23:22
  • It got me down the road. I think this question is answered, but more brewing. Thanks! – Austin Jan 7 '15 at 22:19

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