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I have an ubuntu server which I installed ubuntu-dekstop upon.

Then i started the Gnome Desktop with "startx" command.

I wonder:

  1. how do I kill Gnome so I can go back to only CLI?

  2. how do i disable Gnome form starting when Ubuntu server starts?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

You have 2 alternatives for the "kill gnome" part.

  • Since Ubuntu disabled the ctrl+alt+backspace combination, all you have to do is re-enable the combination
  • Or you can use alt+sysrq+K, this magic sysrq key combination kills all X programs.

To prevent Gnome starting on the startup, use update-rc.d to remove gdm.

# update-rc.d gdm remove
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To get out of Gnome, click on the power-button-shaped icon (a circle with a vertical bar near the top) near the right of the top menu bar and select “Log Out”.

If you want to disable the graphical login manager, either uninstall the gdm package or arrange for the gdm service not to start by commenting out the start (...) paragraph in /etc/init/gdm.conf.

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You can switch back to a console using the Ctrl Alt F1 keystroke where "F1" could be any number (often F1-F6) that represents the virtual consoles that are enabled on your system. You can use F7 or F9 to return to X depending on which one your system uses.

Beware of the magic sysrq. There are some dangerous key combinations such as immediate reboot.

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@Gilles: Thanks. Fixed. – Dennis Williamson Aug 19 '10 at 6:27

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