Ubuntu – Boot to console (standard method fails)

command linegrub2gui

I'm trying to get Ubuntu to boot directly to the console. I don't want to completely remove the GUI because I still kind of need it for training wheels sometimes, but I don't want to deal with it if I don't need it. In the past I have been able to achieve this pretty easily in previous versions by editing /etc/default/grub, but for some reason it's not working on 15.10.

Here is my /etc/default/grub file:

# If you change this file, run 'update-grub' afterwards to update
# /boot/grub/grub.cfg.
# For full documentation of the options in this file, see:
#   info -f grub -n 'Simple configuration'

GRUB_DEFAULT=0
GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT=0
GRUB_HIDDEN_TIMEOUT_QUIET=true
GRUB_TIMEOUT=10
GRUB_DISTRIBUTOR=`lsb_release -i -s 2> /dev/null || echo Debian`
#GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="quiet splash"
GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="text"

# Uncomment to enable BadRAM filtering, modify to suit your needs
# This works with Linux (no patch required) and with any kernel that obtains
# the memory map information from GRUB (GNU Mach, kernel of FreeBSD ...)
#GRUB_BADRAM="0x01234567,0xfefefefe,0x89abcdef,0xefefefef"

# Uncomment to disable graphical terminal (grub-pc only)
GRUB_TERMINAL=console

# The resolution used on graphical terminal
# note that you can use only modes which your graphic card supports via VBE
# you can see them in real GRUB with the command `vbeinfo'
#GRUB_GFXMODE=640x480

# Uncomment if you don't want GRUB to pass "root=UUID=xxx" parameter to Linux
#GRUB_DISABLE_LINUX_UUID=true

# Uncomment to disable generation of recovery mode menu entries
#GRUB_DISABLE_RECOVERY="true"

# Uncomment to get a beep at grub start
GRUB_INIT_TUNE="480 440 1"

As you can see, I have commented out quiet splash, changed the value of GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX to "text", and uncommented GRUB_INIT_TUNE. However, the only thing that seems to make a difference is the quiet boot. When I add and remove the hash from that line it affects the behavior when the machine boots, so I know grub is updating when I tell it to. But no matter what I do it still loads the GUI immediately.

Best Answer

  • Edit /etc/default/grub so GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX="3" (yes, remove text and just add a 3 in its place).

    You can achieve this by running, in a Terminal window:

    sudo nano /etc/default/grub

    • Edit the file and exit

    sudo update-grub

    Reboot and you should be dropped in the command line.

    The 3 boot parameter sets the runlevel to 3 instead of the default (5), which is needed to start the GUI.