Creating an Ubuntu Live USB drive used to be much easier.

@Asylum (48224)
Manchester, England
February 15, 2017 8:53am CST
I have put Ubuntu onto a flash drive several times in the past, which is very simple under Windows. Since the flash drive needs to be formatted in FAT32 it will only support a maximum file size of 4 GB. With the storage area being a single casper-rw file this makes 4 Gb or 8 Gb flash drives most practical. Recently I bought a 8 Gb USB3 drive, but apparently USB3 is not suitable for Live boot drives, so it ran extremely slow. 8 Gb USB2 flash drives were only available in sets of 3, so I decided to use a 64 Gb drive instead. Of course in order to use the space fully it required installing under Linux to allow me to format in Ext 2 and Ext 3. Using the Startup Disk Creator resulted in the use of only a few Gb, so I realised that I needed to install directly. However, installing Ubuntu on the flash drive would have placed GRUB2 bootloader on my hard drive, which I did not want. Eventually I ended up disconnecting both of my hard drives while I installed Ubuntu on the flash drive then reconnecting them. Oh well, it may have been laborious but I do have 45 Gb storage on the drive now.
14 people like this
12 responses
@LadyDuck (177366)
• Switzerland
15 Feb 17
My husband has now learned that a USB3 is not suitable for Live boot drives. You cannot have an idea how many times he tried. Now he knows.
2 people like this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
15 Feb 17
Logic would suggest5 that it would run well, but experience proves otherwise. It does work, but very sluggishly.
2 people like this
@LadyDuck (177366)
• Switzerland
15 Feb 17
@Asylum My husband had a greater problem with a U3 USB key.
2 people like this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
15 Feb 17
@LadyDuck In what respect?
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@garymarsh6 (14429)
• United Kingdom
16 Feb 17
2 people like this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 17
I thought that the behaviour of the USB drive was confusing, but your response is more confusing.
2 people like this
@garymarsh6 (14429)
• United Kingdom
16 Feb 17
@Asylum I am shocked. It is too far over my head to make any sense of this. It is like you are talking in tongues. I used to love anything to do with technical stuff but these days I just don't get it. I guess its an age thing Barry. You are very clever at this sort of stuff whereas I am as daft as a brush.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 17
@garymarsh6 That is simply a matter of interest. If you like something it becomes easy to understand.
@rebelann (42854)
• El Paso, Texas
19 Feb 17
Well, that made a little sense but a lot of what you know how to do goes way over my head.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
19 Feb 17
Much of the process relies on prior familiarity. This is something that I have done many times, but usually with a 4 GB or 8 GB USB2 drive.
1 person likes this
@rebelann (42854)
• El Paso, Texas
19 Feb 17
holy cow @Asylum you mean not all usb ports can be hooked up to the same gadgets?
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@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
19 Feb 17
@rebelann You can use a USB2 device in a USB3 port and also a USB3 device in a USB2 port, but they will always run at the slower speed. The problem with the USB3 flash drive is that they are not compatible with live boot installations.
1 person likes this
@fishtiger58 (30319)
• Momence, Illinois
15 Feb 17
I'm pretty sure I didn't understand one word of your post lol. I have ubuntu and windows on my computer and can go back and forth. I have had ubuntu for about 3 months now and the more I use it the less I want to use windows.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
15 Feb 17
That is because you are running a dual boot between Windows and Ubuntu. It is GRUB2 that presents you with the menu to select which operating system you want. In my case I have installed Ubuntu onto a flash drive, which you may know as a thumbdrive. This allows me to boot from the flash drive on any computer, irrespective of what is loaded on the computer. It will even work on a computer with no hard drive. This is why I did not want GRUB2 to be installed on my computer's hard drive.
1 person likes this
@fishtiger58 (30319)
• Momence, Illinois
18 Feb 17
@Asylum I do believe I still have ubuntu on a flash drive that's how my kid downloaded it on my computer or at least I think that's what he did.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
18 Feb 17
@fishtiger58 That is possibly for installing Ubuntu only and without persistent storage.
1 person likes this
@BelleStarr (39710)
• United States
23 Feb 17
You are speaking a language I don't understand and that is fine with me. I have never done any of this and probably never will. lol
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
23 Feb 17
A live boot Linux drive can be very useful and is well worth creating, although it can be laborious these days.
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@BelleStarr (39710)
• United States
24 Feb 17
@Asylum Okee Dokee but since I have never had one and don't even know what it is, likely won't be doing it. You are way too technically advanced for me lol
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
24 Feb 17
@BelleStarr It is not as technical as it may sound.
1 person likes this
@amadeo (73646)
• United States
15 Feb 17
I am unaware of this.I do not have any problem with my computer.Maybe you can help me.How do I clean up on my hard drive?
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
15 Feb 17
The most effective way is to completely reinstall Windows, but that does require a Windows disk and reinstalling all software.
1 person likes this
@amadeo (73646)
• United States
15 Feb 17
@Asylum I have been hearing different stories on this.Someone say they have a disc you can wipe it out. Or go to my hard drive and just delete what you need.I am in process or thinking of a new computer and do not want my information when I get rid of it.Thank you. I will talk to someone on this.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
15 Feb 17
@amadeo Some computers have an image file of the original installation stored in a non DOS partition on the hard drive. What is the make and model of your computer?
@Inlemay (17051)
• South Africa
20 Feb 17
there is far too much technical jargon for me to understand . . . I am just a plain Jane - but as long as you have gotten it sorted
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
20 Feb 17
Despite sounding technical it is really quite simple.
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• United States
19 Feb 17
This is why it took hours for me to fix my computer. I have absolutely no idea what you said in your post.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
19 Feb 17
!Any of those terms would be obvious to those who have used Linux, but people who have always used Windows will never have encountered them.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (72561)
• Walnut Creek, California
16 Feb 17
Is this German, Swahili? Greek to me!
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 17
You do not speak Geek?:
@shshiju (10567)
• Cochin, India
16 Feb 17
Ubuntu is one of my favorite software. Its simple and easy.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 17
I agree, it is very user friendly.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
16 Feb 17
I missed using Ubuntu software but it was made on my mom's laptop that broke last year.
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@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
16 Feb 17
I preferred the older versions of Ubuntu which used the KDE desktop, whereas Ubuntu 16 uses Unity.
@topffer (36139)
• Hamburg, Germany
15 Feb 17
I do a bit differently : I create two partitions on the flash drive, 1 4GB FAT32 one with Grub4Dos which can be used as a normal flash drive to exchange data with Windows computers, and a second one formatted in Ext2 (Ext 3 and 4 are killing flash drives quickly due to intensive write) with the Linux to boot. I always did it through a Linux laptop, not with a startup disk, but I do not understand why this one wants to install a bootloader on your hard drive when you ask it to create a bootable flash drive.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
15 Feb 17
No, I was actually installing Ubuntu direct onto the flash drive.
1 person likes this