View Full Version : Linux Help, installing to a flash drive

26-04-2014, 04:42 PM
I have a laptop with no hard drive for now so I want to install linux on a flash drive as an interim solution.
However it keeps failing and I am a total linux novice so I need some guidance. When I google it I get a bewildering list of command lines to type and I really don't want to go down that road.

so far I've tried;
Linux MINT x64 - Live CD works, installs to flash drive but after a few hours or days it stops working - icons all change to generic and nothing works, no Idea what's failing.
Kubuntu x86 - Live CD works, will not install to flash drive - guided partitioning is making the wrong partitions and install runs out of space, no Idea how to fix this and have been fighting with it for a while
Puppy linux live CD - corrupted screen, guess there's no graphics driver working

Prefer not to use standard Ubuntu as I don't like unity, prefer not to use live CD as limited functionality and it takes a very long time to boot. Linux MINT looks very nice if it would stop crapping out, but I've installed it 3 times now with the same result - works for a while then bugs out. Would the 32 bit version be worth a try ?

26-04-2014, 04:49 PM
I'm guessing there is some bug or more likely your flash drive is corrupting data which is why Mint loses icons and breaks.

Use manual partitioning instead if guided doesn't work.

Rememer you can install Ubuntu then uninstall Unity afterwards and install some other desktop environment. Or you could try Xubuntu or Lubuntu.

26-04-2014, 05:00 PM
I can't figure out manual partitioning, how many partitions, what type, what size, how do I set one as root?
I'm about to try the 32 bit version of MINT, I'll see how that goes.

Speedy Gonzales
26-04-2014, 05:40 PM
What are you using to put it on a flash drive?? Try rufus (http://rufus.akeo.ie/)

26-04-2014, 06:35 PM
Using the install DVD, currently it's working fingers crossed. I abandoned the flash drive for an external hard drive and installed the 32 bit version of MINT on it. Not Ideal or especially portable but it's working for now. Used it for this post. Maybe my new 16GB flash drive is faulty.

26-04-2014, 06:53 PM
What's your motherboard? My money is more on it being related to the USB drivers...

26-04-2014, 08:19 PM
It's an HP DV6-6102ax laptop, I have another thread about it trying to get a hard drive working. You may be onto something, reformatted and tested the flash drive in windows and it's fine.
Meanwhile the external hard drive is working really well so far, a bit cumbersome but better than a laptop I can't use. If this keeps working the only way to confirm it is to reinstall the same version on the flash drive as it was 64 bit that gave me the problems and 32 bit I'm running now.

I've installed a few programs, downloaded some files, run a couple games, played on youtube - all fine.

26-04-2014, 08:41 PM
on a working win machine run unetbootin
point it to an iso of your linux, or it can download one,
select target usb or sd drive (FAT 32) and go
then boot from that on the HP machine.


27-04-2014, 12:33 AM
I can't figure out manual partitioning, how many partitions, what type, what size, how do I set one as root?
I'm about to try the 32 bit version of MINT, I'll see how that goes.

Simplest way is to make two partitions - one for your system and one for swap. Swap usually same as your RAM size. The rest just give the mount point "/" and use it for the rest of the system. Everything on one partition like Windows.

Yes you can make separate /home partition (and others) if you want but it's not needed and if you are just testing etc I wouldn't bother.