How to Install Gnome Desktop in Ubuntu 17.04


Ubuntu 18.04 will use GNOME to replace Unity as its default Desktop environment. Though Unity 7 will remain supported until 2021, you can now install Gnome Shell alongside in Ubuntu 17.04.

Mark Shuttleworth, Founder of Ubuntu and Canonical, wrote on this blog post:

As we head into the new fiscal year, it’s appropriate to reassess each of our initiatives. I’m writing to let you know that we will end our investment in Unity8, the phone and convergence shell. We will shift our default Ubuntu desktop back to GNOME for Ubuntu 18.04 LTS.

To install Gnome 3 Desktop (Gnome Shell), open terminal via Ctrl+Alt+T, when it opens, run command:

sudo apt install gnome-shell

Type in password (no visual feedback) when prompts and hit Enter.


After that, log out and select login with Gnome session:


About ml

ml is a part time stay-at-home dad who've been using Ubuntu Desktop for a few years. He writes in the free time and wishes to share some useful tips with Ubuntu beginners and lovers.


  1. Aliyar Ilyassov

    After logging in with Gnome session, Ubuntu still runs Unity 8.

  2. The PC Medic In Iowa

    Whoops! Surprise! I just attempted to add Gnome as an alternative to Unity in 17.04. The error message returned informed me Package ‘gnome-shell’ has no installation candidate.

    Guess it’s back to the ol’ drawing board, huh?

  3. LDD "EldidiStroyrr" 'Stroyrr

    Oddly enough, the gnome desktop shows up as “Ubuntu on Xorg” in the login screen.