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I've tried several times creating an SLD in QGIS and then bringing into GeoServer. However, after selecting the style in the Edit Layer-> Publish tab, it remains in the original default color.
You are adding a style, not changing the default style on the layer.
In the layer preview there is a button (...) that opens a menu that will allow you to change to your new style:
Or you can make it the default style using the combo box in the layer publish tab.
You should change the "default style" dropdown, what you did there was to add the new style as a secondary option instead.
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