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Searching in: Articles & FAQs
ID: AR07K00676
Applies to: NX Server Products
Added on: 2013-07-02
Last update: 2015-11-25
Setting a lightweight desktop environment on Ubuntu 11.04 or later

Unity 3D has been the default desktop of Ubuntu since the release of 11.04. Ubuntu Unity 3D desktop is fully supported in NoMachine starting from version 4.3. This means that users can create NoMachine virtual desktops where compositing Window managers such as Compiz are in use.

Earlier versions of NoMachine software don't support the Unity 3D environment in virtual desktop sessions (connections to the physical display running Unity 3D are possible). If you are using an earlier version (e.g NX 3.x), or you simply prefer to use an alternative desktop to Unity 3D on your Ubuntu host, you can install a lightweight desktop environment such as MATE or Xfce (used in Xubuntu), LXDE (used in Lubuntu) or even the GNOME Classic (No effects) desktop.

Follow the instructions below on how to set your preferred lightweight desktop environment:

How to install MATE

On Ubuntu 14.04, run from command line:

$ sudo add-apt-repository "deb http://repo.mate-desktop.org/archive/1.8/ubuntu $(lsb_release -cs) main"
$ wget -q http://mirror1.mate-desktop.org/debian/mate-archive-keyring.gpg -O- | sudo apt-key add -
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install mate-core mate-desktop-environment mate-notification-daemon

For earlier Ubuntu versions:

$ sudo add-apt-repository "deb http://packages.mate-desktop.org/repo/ubuntu VERSION main"

where VERSION is:

saucy for Ubuntu 13.10
raring for Ubuntu 13.04
quantal for Ubuntu 12.10

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install mate-archive-keyring
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install mate-core

If you are using version 4.x or later, set in the node configuration file (/usr/NX/etc/node.cfg):

DefaultDesktopCommand "/etc/X11/Xsession mate-session"

If you are using NX 3.x, set in the node configuration file:

CommandStartGnome "/etc/X11/Xsession mate-session"

How to install Xfce

You can install Xfce from command line:

$ sudo apt-get install xfce4

or from the Ubuntu Software Center: in the filter search type xubuntu-desktop and click to install it.
 

If you are using version 4.x or later, set in the node configuration file (/usr/NX/etc/node.cfg):

DefaultDesktopCommand "/usr/bin/X11/startxfce4"


If you are using version 3.x, set in the node configuration file:

CommandStartGnome "/usr/bin/X11/startxfce4"

How to install LXDE

You can install Xfce from command line:

$ sudo apt-get install lxde

or from the Ubuntu Software Center: in the filter search type lubuntu-desktop and click to install it.
 

If you are using version 4.x or later, set in the node configuration file (/usr/NX/etc/node.cfg):

DefaultDesktopCommand "/usr/bin/startlxde"


If you are using version 3.x, set in the node configuration file:

CommandStartGnome "/usr/bin/startlxde"


How to install GNOME Classic (No effects)

You can install the gnome-session-fallback package from command line:

$ sudo apt-get install gnome-session-fallback

or from the Ubuntu Software Center: enter gnome-session-fallback into the search field and click to install it.

If you are using version 4.x or later, set in the node configuration file (/usr/NX/etc/node.cfg):

DefaultDesktopCommand "/usr/bin/gnome-session --session=gnome-fallback"

and:

CommandStartGnome "/usr/bin/gnome-session --session=gnome-fallback"

If you are using version 3.x, set in the node configuration file:

CommandStartGnome = "/usr/bin/gnome-session --session=gnome-fallback"

A drawback of this workaround is that logging out via the 'power' icon is not possible because the menu is empty.  To log out, run from a terminal the following command:

$ gnome-session-quit

 

Users of GNOME 3, which is the default desktop environment of Fedora 15 and later, should read here:

https://www.nomachine.com/AR0500591