To boot Ubuntu in text mode rather than with a GUI you only need to change GRUB's configuration file. Edit the file '/etc/default/grub' and change the line that starts 'GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=' to 'GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet text". As you will be booting effectively as a headless server then it also makes sense to change any timeouts to zero. Therefore set both 'GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT=' and 'GRUB_TIMEOUT=' to '0'. Additionally set the default boot option to match the appropriate menu option noting that zero represents the first selection. You modified file should then look similar in part to:
Finally as root run the command 'update-grub2' to effect the changes.
And if having logged in on the console you find you want to start your default GUI, then simply run 'service lightdm start' as root.
Hi, Many thanks for getting back to me. That was the first thing I tried. It takes me directly to a login prompt when the stick is plugged into a monitor but when I shut it down, remove it from the monitor and reboot it it seems to get no where. How do I know it's got no where? I have a share that I can see from my Windows PC. Plugged into a monitor it boots to the login prompt and I can see my share. Not plugged into a monitor then my share never appears.
I think more magic is required!
After some trying I have the stick running headless. I installed Ubuntu desktop, then installed Ian's script for the wifi drivers. To load headless I had to pass nomodeset to the kernal. Here's my grub setting::
GRUB_DISTRIBUTOR=`lsb_release -i -s 2> /dev/null || echo Debian`
This took quite a bit of experimenting and troubleshooting over the past couple of days. At the moment my stick will boot headless (tested with the TV turned off). I'm using the stick as a file server and Domoticz home automation server so I've removed most of the desktop packages and am running ubuntu server on the machine.
My process so far has been:
USB to ethernet adapter (I haven't tried with wifi yet) - I use this one: Amazon.com: Belkin USB 2.0 Ethernet Adapter (F4U047bt): Electronics
USB hub to connect the ethernet and keyboard to the device at the same time
1. install Ubuntu 14.04.2 desktop using linuxium's instructions in this post:
I am using the whole drive for Ubuntu and so removed Windows and the recovery partition.
I had to use this desktop Ubuntu image as the server image wouldn't detect the onboard SSD drive.
This post includes the link to linuxium's script to install the wifi, bluetooth etc drivers for the machine.
2. Turn the desktop system into a server - to avoid any issues when Ubuntu wants to load lightDM. I suppose you could just disable lightDM if you wanted.
sudo apt-get install tasksel
sudo tasksel remove ubuntu-desktop
sudo tasksel install server
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install linux-server linux-image-server
sudo apt-get purge lightdm
sudo apt-get install openssh-server
3. update grub with the following settings:
GRUB_DISTRIBUTOR=`lsb_release -i -s 2> /dev/null || echo Debian`
4. do a:
Reboot and the system responds over ethernet and you can ssh in to the box.
When I find some time I'll test this with the wifi network device to see if this comes up cleanly. I'll also test this with the device physically removed from the TV (not just powered off) but in theory it should work fine.
My biggest problem was identifying the need to pass nomodeset to the kernel. the device kept rebooting with an error saying no video mode was set. nomodeset tells the kernel not to try to set a video mode.
Hope this helps - let me know if you find a better way to do this set up.
Well I've been playing with this all day so far and does as suggested above does get me to the point of seeing a login prompt and I can ssh to the machine but only when plugged into a monitor. If I boot without a monitor it seems to fail - or at least I can't ssh to it as ssh reports a network error. If I then plug it back into the monitor I get "invalid video mode specification 'text'. Booting in blind mode. At this point I can ssh but it's not clean. It I then, while plugged into the monitor, turn it off and back on again it boots cleanly.
This stick I'm using is a pure Ubuntu stick not a Windows stick - not sure if this makes any difference or not!
Thank you all for your information as well.
Before discovering this thread I also responded to another thread here: Re: Linux Intel Compute Stick running "Headless" hangs on boot with no HDMI monitor connected - suggestions?
I have the 32GB windows stick with Ubuntu 14.04.3 installed on it right now, and have tried a number of variations of this set of instructions, (see the previous link for a better description of current attempts), as well as a few others that resulted in reinstalling Ubuntu and have not been able to get the stick to boot when not connected to an hdmi monitor.
I posted a link to this thread at the one I first responded to and am hoping that someone discovers a solution and can enlighten us all. Thanks for all of the breadcrumbs... the answer still eludes me.
I've written a script to allow you to boot headless without anything connected to the HDMI. This works on my Windows ICS device running my Ubuntu 14.04.3 LTS ISO installed to eMMC.
To boot headless download my patch from linuxium-headless-patch.sh - Google Drive and make the script executable by entering 'sudo chmod 700 linuxium-headless-patch.sh' and then run the script by entering 'sudo ./linuxium-headless-patch.sh'.
Basically the script will take how you are currently booted and create a new GRUB configuration file to boot equivalently without graphics that then allows you to boot both with and without a monitor/display device connected to the HDMI port of the ICS.
With a monitor connected pressing Ctrl-Alt-F1 will provide a text-based login screen. Booting without a monitor obviously requires remote access to have been previously set up so as a minimum I suggest installing ssh (enter 'sudo apt-get -y ssh openssh-server' and access remotely with 'ssh <username@IP address>'). If you accidentally lock yourself out modifying GRUB during subsequent editing/experimenting then use my ISO on a USB to regain control.
I am sorry to hear that you are having issues with this integration. Intel is currently investigating this issue and we will keep this community thread updated. There is also another post referring to the same issue, see it here: Linux Intel Compute Stick running "Headless" hangs on boot with no HDMI monitor connected - suggestions?. I will update both posts as soon as I get any news.