GUI on unbuntu 14.04

I am tryin to set up a GUI on my unbuntu. Everytime i update and upgrade in the command line, reboot and everything it still brings up the terminal for me no matter what i do. I hit startx and get a huge error. Is there anyone who can assist me from scratch? I will accept any form of assistment or even remote desktop or use teamviewer on my personal computer.

7 Replies

How are you bringing up the terminal? Even with a GUI installed you'll need to access it over certain remote control applications and won't work through the console normally. Even still, I wouldn't recommend using a GUI on a VPS as they don't have very good video support.

Understood but either way i would rather use GUI for specific reasons. Is there anyway you could help me 1 on 1? I been getting a headache trying to get this to work the way i want. If you could give me actual helpful advise it would be nice. I would rebuild the whole server from scratch honestly cause idk what i am doing wrong at this point.

The quick and dirty method is to ssh in using ssh -Y, then run the graphical program you want. When working here, I often use Konqueror as a file manager, and it has an application menu in it, so I can run any application. You are not getting a desktop this way, but you are getting the applications.

I assume this will work on Windows with Putty, but I don't have Windows, so cannot say.

I've used successfully. In the days before Unity it was straightforward to set up a remote desktop on Ubuntu, you can still do it without NoMachine but it's a hassle.

You probably won't be able to run Unity, I'd recommend Xfce.

If you prefer vnc4server and vncviewer instead then install those on the server/client then set up the following, this works on Ubuntu 14.

Start the tunnel:

# CLIENT ssh tunnel script
ssh -X -p 22 -L todoyouruserid@todoyourlinodehostorip

Create a .vnc directory on the server and an executable file called xstartup and fill it with this:

# Uncomment the following two lines for normal desktop:
# debugging trying this out
# exec /etc/X11/xinit/xinitrc
[ -x /etc/vnc/xstartup ] && exec /etc/vnc/xstartup
[ -r $HOME/.Xresources ] && xrdb $HOME/.Xresources
xsetroot -solid grey
vncconfig -iconic &
#fvwm &

Start the server:

# SERVER start the VNC server
vncserver :01 -rfbport 5901 -once -geometry 1280x1024 -depth 16 -nevershared -localhost 

Run a ps and make sure the VNC server started or check the log in the .vnc directory.

Start your vncviewer:


^^^ at some point, I can't recall when, you need to set up a VNC password and you'd enter it when starting the viewer. The viewer will connect to your localhost tunneling over ssh to your vnc server port and you should see Xfce or FVWM if you prefer it as your desktop.

To kill the server:

vncserver -kill :01
# or whatever the server started the screen on, it should be in the .vnc/ directory log.

I am new to linux all together at least terminal wise so honestly you are all confusing me big time.


I am new to linux all together at least terminal wise so honestly you are all confusing me big time.

Working with servers means working on a terminal. Even when you have a GUI, it needs to be set up via terminal, troubleshooted on a terminal, etc. The best guide I can find that we have would be here: … untu-12-04">

As Mark suggested, performance isn't always great this way. I strongly suggest using this opportunity to learn more about Linux and it's command-line system. We have several guides which will help:


I hope that helps. Good luck.

That is the exact doc i used step by step and did not work at all for me and even gave me errors after that. … untu-12-04">

And what i am trying to do i need GUI regardless.


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