HOW TO Install Lubuntu on USB Drive




Can I install Lubuntu on USB Drives?
Yes, you can.


What is the minimum size?
4GB USB Drive.


What do I need to know or learn in the process?
Please have a look at:

In General: Lubuntu One Stop Thread
Specifically: Lubuntu Installation

Just have a look at the above two links and you should be good to go.


Any Preparations I need to start before installation to the USB Drive?
Yes, you need to prepare your USB Drive for the installation Process. It's highly recommended to do that before the installation.

Please have a look at: How to Use GParted

GParted will help you to prepare your USB Drive so that you can easily install Lubuntu on.


What release/version of Lubuntu do I have to use?
This guide will explain that using Lubuntu 11.10 32-bit. However, the release doesn't really matter. You can follow the same steps with any other release, even other variant such us Ubuntu or Xubuntu. Same concept.


Okay, how do I do that?

1- Download Lubuntu

2- Check MD5SUM

3- Burn the image (iso) to a CD

4- Plug your USB to your machine

5- Turn your machine on and then Enter BIOS

6- Make sure your CD-Drive is the FIRST DEVICE to boot from

7- Make sure your USB Drive is the SECOND DEVICE to boot. Some
BIOS detect/read USB Drive as HDD. In that case, please see this:







In the above Screenshot, USB Drive got detected as USB-HDD0.
In that case, just set your Hard Disk (as showed in the first Screenshot) as the SECOND DEVICE to boot from.

8- In case your BIOS will detect your USB as something else rather than USB-HDD0 then you need to select the correct option and set that as the SECOND DEVICE to boot from and set your Hard Disk as the THIRD DEVICE to boot from.

9- After you are done with BIOS, please Save and Exit.

10- Your machine will start booting from your Live-CD. Please follow the same steps in Lubuntu Installation Guide. To summarize that:
a- Choose your Language
b- Choose Try Lubuntu without installation
c- You should see the Live Desktop after a while
d- If Try Lubuntu without installation didn't work then please check this.

11- From the Live Desktop, please run GParted and Prepare your USB for the Installation. This guide will help you to do that step by step. I wrote it specially for this.

12- Once you are done with GParted, please start the Installation.

13- Please have a look at these Screenshots:

a- In this example, there is /dev/sda and there is /dev/sdb which are Internal HDD and also there is /dev/sdc which is the 4GB USB Drive. Please make sure to select the correct drive - this is very important.




b- Because you have previously prepared your USB for the installation, the next steps will be very easy. Now, you just need to select the mounting points and choose to format as EXT4.

/dev/sdc1 will be your ROOT Partition. Note that, you don't really need /home partition here. Total Size is just 4GB so no need for that. After all, this is not meant for day-to-day use or long-run use.




c- Device for Boot Loader Installation MUST be:




/dev/sdc ImationFlashDrive (4.1 GB) is the MBR of your USB Drive.

If you are going to install Lubuntu Boot Loader (GRUB2) to the MBR (sdc) of your USB Drive, then you are NOT going to mess with your Internal HDD and its Boot Loader no matter what OS you have there.

This is the safest way to do it. Later, will explain in details how safe and good that is.



d- Please, make sure this is the final screen that you'll see before you go on with the installation:




e- Click on Install Now. The installation will start and once it's done, restart your machine.



Now, what will happen?
As long as your USB is plugged in AND as long as your BIOS has the same settings/configuration that you set at the beginning of this guide THEN ... your machine will BOOT FIRST from your USB Drive.


What if I'll ignore what you explained and install Lubuntu GRUB2 to the MBR of my Internal HDD (sda in this example)?
It's okay to install Lubuntu GRUB2 to the MBR of your internal HDD but that will replace and overwrite whatever is installed on the MBR of your internal HDD. Above all, your USB MUST BE Plugged in ALL THE TIME because GRUB2 files will be stored in your USB Drive since you have installed Lubuntu over there.



This is NOT recommended AT ALL. Please avoid that.

USB Devices are mobile devices that you can carry with you wherever you go. If you make sure to install GRUB2 during the above installation on the MBR of your USB Drive then you are basically creating a mobile OS that can work on any machine and you are not messing around with your internal boot loader.



Note: As always, this guide will be updated on daily basis if needed

Enjoy!