In this tutorial you will learn how to install GUI ( graphical user interface ) on Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa Server/Desktop.

In this tutorial you will learn:
  • How to install tasksel
  • How to select GUI from tasksel tasks
  • How to install GUI
  • How to login to newly installed GUI
Installed GUI on Ubuntu 20.04
Installed GUI on Ubuntu 20.04

Software Requirements and Conventions Used

Software Requirements and Linux Command Line Conventions
Category Requirements, Conventions or Software Version Used
System Installed or upgraded Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa
Software tasksel
Other Privileged access to your Linux system as root or via the sudo command.
Conventions # - requires given linux commands to be executed with root privileges either directly as a root user or by use of sudo command
$ - requires given linux commands to be executed as a regular non-privileged user

Ubuntu 20.04 GUI installation step by step instructions

  1. First step is to updated the apt package index and install tasksel. To do so execute the following Linux commands:
    $ sudo apt update
    $ sudo apt install tasksel

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  3. Next, select the GUI you wish to install. Below table shows main desktop environments available for installation via tasksel:
    Main available Graphical User Interfaces (GUI) installations using tasksel's tasks
    Task Description
    kubuntu-desktop Kubuntu desktop ( KDE Desktop )
    lubuntu-desktop Lubuntu Desktop ( LXQt desktop )
    ubuntu-budgie-desktop Ubuntu Budgie desktop
    ubuntu-desktop Ubuntu desktop ( default GNOME )
    ubuntu-desktop-minimal Ubuntu minimal desktop ( default GNOME )
    ubuntu-mate-desktop Ubuntu MATE desktop
    ubuntustudio-desktop Ubuntu Studio desktop ( Xfce-based desktop )
    ubuntustudio-desktop-core Ubuntu Studio minimal DE installation ( Xfce-based desktop )
    xubuntu-desktop Xubuntu desktop ( Xfce desktop )
    For additional GUI selection execute the below command:
    $ tasksel --list-tasks

  4. At this point you have selected GUI you wish to install and took a note of the relevant task name.

    Next, use tasksel command to install your selected GUI. For example to install the default Ubuntu GNOME desktop execute:
    $ sudo tasksel install ubuntu-desktop
  5. Reboot your system:
    $ reboot
  6. At this point the GUI should start. You may need to select your desired desktop flavor on the login page before you login.

    In case the GUI is not starting at all, make sure your system boots into the graphical target. To do so execute:
    $ sudo systemctl set-default
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