I have a working PXE boot, and can successfully install the 16.04 Desktop via PXE and NFS.

Now I'm trying to automate the PXE install, and I can't get past the installation's "Welcome" screen that asks for my language.

I've read through: https://wiki.ubuntu.com/UbiquityAutomation and https://help.ubuntu.com/16.04/installation-guide/amd64/apbs01.html

This is my pxe boot command:

LABEL Ubuntu 16.04 64-bit -- PRESEED
        KERNEL Ubuntu/16.04/amd64/vmlinuz.efi
        APPEND automatic-ubiquity file=/srv/install/ubuntu/16.04/amd64/preseed/custom.seed boot=boot=casper netboot=nfs nfsroot=myip:/srv/install/ubuntu/16.04/amd64 initrd=Ubuntu/16.04/am64/initrd.lz

And here is the top of custom.seed

ubiquity languagechooser/language-name select English
ubiquity localechooser/supported-locales multiselect en_US.UTF8
d-i debian-installer/locale string en_GB.utf8

But these does seem to be enough to get past the installer's first question.

How can I get past the first Welcome/language screen?

EDIT: I am using the CD Desktop Image that loads with a UI where you click the CD cion to install, not the netboot image.

  • I think most of these docs are for a server installation, not the desktop one with a GUI? May 28, 2016 at 19:31
  • I think one of your issues is the kernel parameter line: "boot=boot=casper" should be boot=casper.
    – MSumulong
    Aug 3, 2016 at 12:17

1 Answer 1


The trick ends up being to modify the kernel boot commandline in your PXE entry (or e.g. in a grub.cfg or txt.cfg file or similar), adding debian-installer/language=en.

For example, my netboot setup's grub.cfg has this entry:

menuentry "Desktop 20.04 Installer" {
   set gfxpayload=keep
   linux ubuntu2004/vmlinuz ip=dhcp nfsroot= netboot=nfs ro file=/cdrom/preseed/ubuntu.seed boot=casper systemd.mask=tmp.mount automatic-ubiquity fsck.mode=skip noprompt keyboard-configuration/layoutcode=us debian-installer/language=en --
   initrd ubuntu2004/initrd

(This may work in combination with entries in the preseed file. I did not test removing those after adding the above...)

How I came upon this:

  • I've successfully preseeded everything else with my own installs, so had non-zero knowledge/experience here...
  • Like you, I had ubiquity languagechooser/language-name select English (US) in my preseed file. Not tested, but I suspect that changing this would change which language was initially selected in the GUI...
  • Referencing https://help.ubuntu.com/lts/installation-guide/s390x/apbs02.html#preseed-auto, which talks about kernel command parameters (though doesn't give any examples that aren't preseed snippets): I had previously been using a keyboard-configuration/layoutcode=us parameter, and that page suggests several parameters, including debian-installer/language=en.
  • From past installs, looking in /var/log/installer/syslog on an imaged system, I found that parameter mentioned:
Oct 16 00:37:33 ubuntu localechooser: info: debian-installer/language preseeded to 'en' (seen: false)
Oct 16 00:37:33 ubuntu localechooser: info: debian-installer/country preseeded to 'US' (seen: true)
Oct 16 00:37:33 ubuntu localechooser: info: debian-installer/locale preseeded to 'en_US.UTF-8' (seen: true)
  • Note how the other two parameters have seen: true... this gave me confidence to try the parameter out.
  • While the lines look like that still after adding the kernel commandline parameter, after adding debian-installer/language=en, things auto-ran and the parameter is now marked as "seen" earlier in this initial syslog.

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