Ubuntu – How to install cinnamon on Ubuntu server


How do I install cinnamon and mate on ubuntu server 12.04?
What are the dependencies?

When I install cinnamon it doesn't start when I start the system and when I try to use it with startx command i shows a "Failed to load session "ubuntu" " error while entering the desktop GUI.
With MATE it also doesn't start automatically and when I start it with startx some icons are broken and the locale appears to have some problems with the pt_BR special characters.

Best Answer

I had the same problem on my company server and I was searching alternatives for days before I get my problem solved with MATE.

That's what I did:

  1. Manually install the minimal packages for get X running on my host.

    sudo apt-get install xserver-org-core
  2. Follow the instructions from this post: (I just needed a minimal GUI so I just get installed the mate-core package)


  3. I needed my server starts on CLI with NO GUI, so I don't install any display manager (gdm, kdm, etc). so if you need start server on a GUI try to build the Mate-display-manager from the source.

  4. After installation of MATE maybe you want to install some tools.

    sudo apt-get install mate-system-tools mate-text-editor mozo mate-utils
  5. Of course, you can install some useful tools from Gnome

    sudo apt-get install --no-install-recommends synaptic gparted firefox system-config-lvm 

This is it, reboot server, log on and run startx

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