I'll start by saying that I'm new to Linux and I want to use it for a MySQL cluster.

I installed 2 Ubuntu servers on different machines that have no GUI.

My question is: Is there a way to install Ubuntu desktop with GUI and connect to the Ubuntu server, and would I be able to manage it in a GUI environment?

Or am I getting the whole idea wrong?

  • This should be moved to ServerFault...For starters try an SSH connection.
    – CIGuy
    Jul 20, 2012 at 21:31
  • By the way, if a question is in the wrong place, you can flag it to be moved. Please don't downvote new users' questions just because they were asked on the wrong Stack Exchange site, as they may not be aware yet of the other sites that are out there.
    – Nate C-K
    Jul 20, 2012 at 22:10

3 Answers 3


I would suggest installing VNC Server on the servers and on any client may it be windows or linux use VNC Viewer and you will be able to have a gui on the client side and still run a non gui server/s. There are some modifications to make this happen but not hard at all, try google to find the VNC Server, I think the package is VNC4Server or something like that. Hope this helps on your endeavors.


Your question is not very clear, but I'll try to answer (maybe it helps). If you want to have GUI for your servers, you need to install something like X server on them, then you could set it up to accept connections from another machine or access it some other way.

In other words, if you only want to operate a machine via GUI, you should install all the necessary parts of it on that machine.

However, you don't usually control servers using GUI. Things like installing MySQL and setting it can (and maybe even should) be done without it.


It sounds like you are looking for MySQL Workbench:


It can access your MySQL server (directly or via SSH) from any remote desktop machine.

Most other Linux administration tasks are normally done in the console (i.e. via the command line). If you really want to access GUI tools on the remote host, though, you can look at running a remote X session. It generally doesn't perform very well, though, in my experience. You're probably better off just sticking with the command line.

By the way, the remote machine that you use to manage your Ubuntu servers doesn't have to be an Ubuntu machine. You can use another distribution of Linux, or a Windows or Mac machine.

On Windows, I know that MySQL Workbench runs just fine. Most Windows users use PuTTY to connect to a Linux machine. You can get PuTTY here: http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty/

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