How To Remove the Fortune Message from the Linux Mint Terminal

October 27, 2009

LinuxMint is a refreshing new take on Ubuntu, for those of you who are getting tired of the “same old thing ” but aren’t quite ready to venture away from a Debian based distro. It has a crisp UI, with a slightly more familiar menu for those of you coming straight from Windows. However, it has some quirks and requires a bit of fine tuning.

The first thing that had to go was the annoying “fortune” message that would display every time you launched a terminal. I have no idea why such a thing would be included in Mint as I can’t see very many people wanting it. Thankfully, removing it is quite simple.

If you just want to disable it, run the following command:

sudo pico /etc/bash.bashrc

And scroll all the way to the bottom, you’ll want to disable or completely remove the line that says:


If, like me, you’re running Mint on a Netbook and need to free up as much resource as possible, you can completely remove it from your system by running the following command:

sudo apt-get remove fortune

Just be sure to complete the above step as well or you will get the error bash: /usr/bin/mint-fortune: No such file or directory every time you open your terminal.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. @xtb – That would explain why my Mint Menu’s keep dying. Personally I don’t like their menu so I just readded the default Gnome one, but thank you for pointing out that they are connected. I will look into this matter more.

  2. Is it safe to remove them? I personally don’t like them so much, so I would like to remove it.

  3. @Coach – Yes its safe, you’ll just end up losing your Mint menu from the sounds of it. You can easily add the normal Gnome menu though. When I get some time I’ll have to research an alternate option that doesnt force you to sacrifice your Mint menu.

  4. I removed it in Mint 9 completely with sudo apt-get remove fortune. Some artwork gets removed as well, but Mint Menu works fine after reboot. Editing bash.bashrc remains vital in order to avoid the error message.

    (I know it’s been a while since this has been posted but this thread is ATTOW still number one hit in Google if you search for the error message)

  5. Thanks for the tip. I thought removing cowsay and fortune was unlikely to have any weird knock on effects because they are just stupid little time wasters…

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