A friend asked about how to get Ubuntu Karmic to skip gdm (gnome display manager) startup on bootup. Removing gdm removes too much due to dependencies.
Scenario: Boot Ubuntu Karmic to a console login; login; type "startx" to start the GUI environment, not necessarily Gnome.
Thus far the only way I've found to do this is by editing /etc/init/gdm.conf. Change the line that reads "stop on runlevel " to "stop on runlevel ". Then reboot the system; just restarting gdm didn't work on my tests.
At this point my test system, which is a Virtual Box installation, boots to a console login as expected. When I issue the "startx" command Gnome starts up as expected _but_ the Ubuntu One client asks for access to the keyring and networking is not started. I'm not so concerned about Ubuntu One asking for keyring access as I am about not having networking up. That is rather trivial if one is comfortable booting to a console login.
If anyone knows of a better way I'd love to hear about it.
This forum post may offer another way but it doesn't take into account that Karmic is using grub2 which means there is no longer a /boot/grub/menu.lst file.