Initial Fedora install - No Gnome Desktop

Posted on 2007-07-23
Last Modified: 2013-12-15
I'm new to Linux, coming primarily from the Windows world.  I installed Fedora 7.  The install went pretty cleanly, but when I boot Fedor, it goes straight to loading X Serve, once that occurs, I get a gray background with a cursor (which moves using the mouse, no problem).  I get no desktop, however, so I can't actually do anything.

I'm not familiar enough with Linux to troubleshoot this.  I couldn't even manage to force a boot to command line at this point.  Any help to point me where to look would be appreciated.


Question by:corwin_ranger
    LVL 14

    Expert Comment

    by:Deepak Kosaraju
    did u intall gnome desktop rpm's u can check using
    rpm -qa | grep gnome*
    in the command prompt if u get output with couple of names then u go to try with
    startx command
    and if now installed then u need to install the gnome packages using
    rpm -ivh gnome-*
    but before installing u got to copy all the files in all cd's to local backup and then install from that location
    LVL 87

    Assisted Solution

    You can try ctrl+alt+f1 which should get you a terminal open. Now enter

    yum kde

    That should install the KDE GUI.
    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    Since when has: 'yum kde' installed kde!!??

    As kosarajudeepak says you need to check your preferred desktop is installed. To check ctrl-alt-f1 to get to the terminal then log in. Then type:
    yum grouplist

    This will show you the groups you have installed and the groups that are available to install. You need to be looking for 'GNOME Desktop Environment' for GNOME or 'KDE (K Desktop Environment)' for KDE.

    If you haven't got any of these installed then you can use the group install option of yum:
    yum groupinstall 'GNOME Desktop Environment' # or for KDE:
    yum groupinstall 'KDE (K Desktop Environment)'
    LVL 87

    Expert Comment

    I haven't used yum for ages and forgot the "install".

    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    'yum install kde' won't work either. There isn't a package called kde. You could manually install each package in KDE with: yum install <list all packages(which is loads)> or use the groupinstall function.

    you /might/ be lucky with dependencies and use: yum install kdebase
    You will probably miss quite a few packages that aren't in the dependency tree though. I would just use the groupinstall.

    Author Comment


    Thank you.  I haven't been home most of the day, so I need to see if Gnome is installed or not.  I did select it during the install process, but who knows.

    As I said, I'm new to linux.  Where would I check to ensure that when X starts the Gnome desktop is being requested (assuming it IS installed)?  I assume it's a startup script of some kind.

    LVL 2

    Accepted Solution

    The default desktop is defined in: /etc/sysconfig/desktop

    Basically startx calls ~/.xinitrc
    Lacking this it will call /etc/X11/xinit/xinitrc - which execs /etc/X11/xinit/Xclients which in turn sources /etc/sysconfig/desktop for the preference of desktop environment.

    So. If GNOME is installed (when you have checked using yum) i'd look in /etc/sysconfig/desktop
    You should find something like:
    If not add or amend the line so it read this.

    Then run this from the command prompt:
    LVL 2

    Assisted Solution

    Another note:
    Check /etc/sysconfig/desktop
    Look for the DISPLAYMANAGER variable. This needs to be GNOME as well. This will ensure gdm is run when you boot your machine in initlevel 5. This basically defines which login screen appears ;)
    LVL 7

    Assisted Solution

    It seems to me that the GDM failed to load for some reason, or failed to show the login window.
    What is the output of the file /var/log/gdm ?
    You can use the command 'cat' to pour its contents. Do it like that:
    cat /var/log/gdm

    Also - take heed of the letters case - it does matter in Linux/Unix.

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