How to add Gnome to a CentOS 6 minimal install

I have been using the minimal iso (CentOS-6.0-x86_64-minimal.iso) to install CentOS 6. I wanted to add a GUI to my vm, but I could not find easy documentation showing how to add a GUI, or Gnome in this case, to a CentOS 6 minimal install. I was not looking for the smallest X windows install, I was just trying to get the Desktop to function like it would as if I installed from the full DVD.

There are a lot of results of how to do this, but things have been renamed in CentOS 6, so that made it more difficult to figure out. Also, there are “Short Names” and I am assuming they are called “Long Names” associated with a yum groupinstall, which added to my confusion.

To add Gnome/GUI to a minimal CentOS 6 install run (short name version):

yum groupinstall basic-desktop desktop-platform x11 fonts

And the “long name” version:

yum groupinstall "Desktop" "Desktop Platform" "X Window System" "Fonts"

Hope that helps someone or at least help me to remember.

61 Responses to How to add Gnome to a CentOS 6 minimal install

  1. jbmurphy April 10, 2013 at 11:31 am #

    I think the black boxes usually mean you are missing fonts. Look at you X start up logs and you should be able to find the fonts you are missing. Hope that helps.

  2. bbvb April 12, 2013 at 10:02 am #

    “couldn’t resolve host ‘’
    Error: Cannot find a valid baseurl for repo: base


  3. pat April 17, 2013 at 7:27 pm #

    I couldn’t get mines to work, I don’t know why.

  4. jbmurphy April 18, 2013 at 3:48 pm #

    I believe that this is an error with your DNS settings.

  5. jbmurphy April 18, 2013 at 3:50 pm #

    I have had that problem with a lot of sites. I don’t know how to work around it yet.

  6. Jim October 16, 2013 at 9:46 pm #

    You also have more options to install

    # yum -y groupinstall “Graphical Administration Tools”
    # yum -y groupinstall “General Purpose Desktop”
    # yum -y groupinstall “Office Suite and Productivity”
    # yum -y groupinstall “Graphics Creation Tools”



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