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Old 06-28-2014, 08:11 AM   #1
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How to install Slackware with a desltop GUI automatically?


I have an old Dell with a Pentium 4 processor, 512 mb of ram and an 80 Gb IDE hard drive. Not sure but I think the video card is integrated into the motherboard. Slackware will be going on this one.

Played around with Slackware in a VirtualBox on my other machine trying to get Slackware to install with a desktop GUI automatically and it just dumped me at the command line.

How do I install Slackware so that a functional desktop GUI comes up automatically after installation? Forgot to mention, it'll be installed using a USB stick.

Last edited by Gremlin022; 06-28-2014 at 08:15 AM.
Old 06-28-2014, 08:25 AM   #2
Didier Spaier
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At the command line, log in as "root", then type:
sed -i "s/id:3:initdefault:/id:4:initdefault:/" /etc/inittab
then reboot, you'll then be able to choose your preferred desktop or windows manager in a menu.

But before you do that, please create a regular (non privileged) user typing:
When you are done type the aforementioned command, reboot and choose to log in as a regular user (the one you just created).

To know more, visit

I suggest that you post your questions about Slackware in the Slackware forum to get more relevant answers.

PS I just corrected the first command, sorry if you already typed it.
PPS Corrected again, thanks Brian.

Last edited by Didier Spaier; 06-28-2014 at 10:14 AM. Reason: PPS added.
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Old 06-28-2014, 09:47 AM   #3
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Didier missed a t out, should be inittab.
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Old 06-28-2014, 11:10 PM   #4
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Just to clarify a bit, Slackware installs with six window managers/desktop environments; you select your preferred default at time of installation and change it with the command xwmconfig.

Slackware defaults to booting to the command line, rather than to a display manager, then you start the GUI with the command startx. Didier Spaier's command changes the default runlevel from three (command line) to four (GUI). You could also do this by editing /etc/inittab in a text editor.

Some distros (Debian and its descendants, in particular), treat runlevels two to five as if they were all runlevel four (GUI), something which I find quite irritating and which I made not happen on my Debian computer.

Last edited by frankbell; 06-28-2014 at 11:15 PM.
Old 06-28-2014, 11:14 PM   #5
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Or, if during your installation, you've chosen a desktop environment to be your default- just log-in when prompted to do so when you boot-up Slackware; and then type "startx" and the desktop environment you chose at installation will start up.

(I'll make a note of Didier's command though...that may come in handy!)


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