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Creating an Ubuntu Server on a Z3735F Device

posted 13 Aug 2015, 03:41 by Ian MORRISON   [ updated 6 Feb 2020, 17:22 ]

Unfortunately creating an Ubuntu server on a Z3735F device is not as simple as just downloading and installing the server ISO from ''. Firstly the server kernel does not have in-built eMMC support so the install script will not see your internal storage. Secondly the server kernel is a different version so it will not support the dynamic kernel modules for wifi and bluetooth.

However it is quite simple to convert a desktop installation to a server one. First download and install the Ubuntu desktop ISO for a Z3735F device (hint: use the ISO from remembering to patch if using a 32-bit bootloader with ''). Once installed, do not log in but press 'Ctrl+Alt+F1' to open a virtual console. Now log in and enter the following commands to create your server. Afterwards you can then access your server remotely using 'ssh unsername@ip.address'.

# Open terminal window with ctrl-alt-F1
sudo su -
apt-get update

# Change grub to text mode
sed -i 's/^GRUB_TIMEOUT=.*/GRUB_TIMEOUT=0/' /etc/default/grub
sed -i 's/^GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=.*/GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="text"/' /etc/default/grub
sed -i 's/^#GRUB_TERMINAL/GRUB_TERMINAL/' /etc/default/grub

# Remove desktop packages
apt-get -y install tasksel
tasksel remove ubuntu-desktop
aptitude -y purge '~c'

# Set up networking - and modify as required if using static IP addresses
cat <<EOF >> /etc/network/interfaces

auto eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp
ifup eth0

# Set up remote access
apt-get -y install ssh openssh-server

# Install server packages
tasksel install server

# Perform updates
apt-get update
apt-key adv --keyserver --recv-keys 16126D3A3E5C1192
apt-get update

# Reboot to finish