Switching to a GUI login on RHEL 6

If you installed using a text login and wish to switch to a graphical login, follow this procedure.

  1. If you are not already root, switch users to the root account:
    % su -
    Provide the administrator password when prompted.
  2. If you have not already done so, install the X Window System:
    # yum groupinstall "X Window System"
  3. Install a graphical desktop environment:
    1. To install the GNOME desktop environment, use this command:
      # yum groupinstall "GNOME Desktop Environment"
    2. To install the KDE desktop environment, use:
      # yum groupinstall KDE
    3. To install the XFCE desktop environment, use:
      # yum groupinstall XFCE
      NOTE: The above step may take some time as your RHEL system downloads and installs additional software. You may be asked to provide the installation media depending on your original installation source.
  4. Run the following command to edit the /etc/inittab file:
    vi /etc/inittab
    1. Press the I key to enter insert mode.
    2. Find the line that includes the text initdefault. Change the numeral 3 to 5.
    3. Type :wq and press the Enter key to save the file and exit the vi text editor.
  5. Reboot the system using the reboot command. Your system will restart and present a graphical login.