How to install Ubuntu on usb flash drive?

Installing Ubuntu and it’s derivatives using LiveUSB Install is super easy.


  • Internet connection or previously downloaded ISO file of the Ubuntu Live CD
  • FAT32 formatted USB Flash Drive or External Disk with at least one FAT32 partition, big enough to hold the contents of the ISO file (2GB or more is recommended).
  • 5 minutes of your time

Start by downloading and starting the appropriate version of LiveUSB Install for your operating system.

For Windows users

If you are a Windows user, you just have to download and start the exe file. The windows version is portable.

Note for Windows users: Some antivirus programs might report the program as potentially dangerous / generic threat. This is a false positive, caused by the compression/self extract algorithms that the portable version uses. You can submit the file to VirusTotal to verify it’s safety.

For Ubuntu / Debian (and derivatives)

If you are Ubuntu / Debian (or their derivatives) user, you can install the .deb file.

For other distributions

Download and extract the tar.gz package somewhere in your home folder, and then start (make sure you have all dependencies installed first).

The next steps are the same for both Linux and Windows users.

When you start the program, you should see the following screen:


If you already have downloaded the Ubuntu Live CD ISO file, select “ISO Image” (if not selected already), click the button on the right, and select the ISO file.
If you don’t have the ISO file, select “Internet”.

The next step is to select the distribution and version.
Select Ubuntu from the “Distribution” dropdown menu, and the desired version from the “Version” dropdown (“16.04 – amd64” in this case).

Next, plug in and mount your flash or external disk drive, and click the refresh button in the “Install to” section.
You should see its partitions in the dropdown. Usually, if you are using flash drive, there is only one partition, and it’s already selected.

Optional: If you want to have all the benefits of Ubuntu Live CD, but also be able to keep your settings after reboot, check “Persistent documents and settings”, and select the desired persistent file size (make sure you have enough space on the drive). Recommended – at least 512MB.
This mode will create additional file, named “casper-rw”, and all changes you make during Live CD session will be saved inside it.
To boot in persistent mode, make sure you have selected the “Start Ubuntu (persistent)” option from the boot menu. If you select “Start Ubuntu”, the distribution will start in the default live mode, ignoring all saved settings (without deleting them).

The final step

Click the OK button, sit back and relax.
It usually takes just couple of minutes if you already have the ISO file, but it depends on the write speed of your drive.