Thursday, August 23, 2012

How to make a bootable Linux USB drive via Unetbootin

    Installation of Linux OS on your system no longer requires any cd's or dvd's. All you need is a USB drive with sufficient storage space and Unetbootin. Unetbootin is an open source software that allows you to make bootable USB drives for Linux installations and it can be achieved with simple steps.

Step 1: Obtain Unetbootin
    •  To get Unetbootin on your system type the following command from your terminal,
        • sudo apt-get install unetbootin
    • Press Enter and wait for the installation to complete. 
 Step 2: Formatting USB drive
    • After the installation of unetbootin you must format the USB drive before making it bootable.
    • In order to format your USB drive it should be unmounted first. So, to check the USB drive name type,
        • df -h
    • This command displays the list of drives in your system. The USB drive name, for example /dev/sdb1.
    • To unmount it,
        • sudo umount /dev/sdb1
    • After unmounting your USB, formatting can be done using the command,
        • sudo mkfs.vfat /dev/sdb1
    • Now your USB is ready to be made bootable.

Step 3: Creating the bootable USB
    • To launch Unetbootin type the command,
        • nohup unetbootin &
    • After launching Unetbootin you will find two options namely,
        • Distribution
        • Disk Image
    • Selecting Distribution allows you to specify the linux distribution(for example: Ubuntu 11.10) you need and it will be downloaded from the ubuntu website.
    • Alternatively, if you are have an image file of the linux version select Disk Image.
    • After selecting Disk Image, select ISO(by default) and browse the location of the linux image.
    • Next specify the USB drive (for example /dev/sdb1 which depends on your system).
    • Click Ok. Now the process will start and you will be prompted when task is complete.
    • Now, restart your system and select USB from your boot option and follow the on-screen instructions to install linux.
    Now your all set and you can install linux along side any other OS or a standalone one. Hope, this information was useful.

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