Install Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix (Dual Boot)

*note this is based of an installation on an Acer Aspire One 10.1″ Netbook

Table of Contents
Introduction
Getting Started
Testing the Live USB
Partition Fu
Install
Extras

Introduction

This guide will help you install Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix on your netbook and allow for dual booting with Windows. It is assumed that your netbook came preinstalled with Windows (most likely XP) or you have installed Windows on your netbook yourself.

Getting Started

Go to the Ubuntu download page and select a location nearest you and download the image (img) of Ubunut 9.04 Netbook Remix.

*note that Ubuntu Netbook Remix comes as an img file instead of an iso because – in laymans terms – imgs are images of disks (hard drives and flash drives for example) while iso’s are images of optical disks (CD’s and DVD’s for example), you will be writing this img to a USB flash disk.

Testing the Live USB

Now that your Live USB is ready to go, you should test it out. Connect the USB drive to your netbook and then reboot. You may need to press the setup key during the Acer splash screen to enter the BIOS and change the boot order so that your USB takes precidence to your hard drive. Save and exit. If all goes well you should be booting into Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix in no time!

Partition Fu

Since you want to dual boot Ubuntu with Windows, you should take some time to partition your hard drive the way you want it. You could do it during the install, but you have some more options if you do it now (before the install process).

Open Gparted by going to: Administration (left menu) then click “Partition Editor” (see image below)

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Once Gparted is up and running, you should take a look at your hard drive’s partiton. If you are using an Acer Aspire, you will see 2 partitions. The first one (very small) is a special installation that is there for the Acer Recover disks you are supposed to create from Windows should your Windows install go sour. The second partition is your Windows partition (you may want to ensure you did a defrag from Windows before going through  this tutorial).

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Right click on the Windows partition (It will be called “ACER” if you’re doing this on an Acer) and go to “Resize/Move”. Next adjust the size after (Free Space Following) to allow for enough room for your Linux partition and a swap. I chose to leave 32 GB (about 30GB for my Ubuntu partition and 2GB for my Swap). Make sure you adjust the size of the Window’s partition in the “Free space following” category or else you will run into problems when you try to boot into Windows (the Windows Boot Loader will not find the correct partition and you will have to fix this manually).

You should now have some unallocated space on your disk and it will look something like the following:

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Now you need to create a new partition. Make it a Primary Partition and the file system should be Ext4 and select the size. Be sure to leave some room after/following for the Swap partition. I left 2GB (2048) for mine.

Then create a new partition (this also can be Primary unless you plan on having more than 4 partitionson your disk) and make it a Linux-Swap file system with the remaining free space (should be 1 to 2 GB). Gparted should display something similar to the following image:

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Now click “Apply” and wait for the magic to happen. It may take a little while so go ahead and take a short break, get a snack or go for a short walk.

When it’s done simply close Gparted; you’re ready to install!

Install

Now you are ready to install, go to the “Favorites” menu (on the left) and click on “Install” in the main content area:

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Now you should be on your way to a very simple install. The first couple steps are very self explanitory. When you get to step 4 you should be faced with 2 choices, either use the entire hard disk (if you plan to dual boot, do NOT chose that one), or select partitions manually. You want to specify partitions manually.

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

After selecting the appropriate option, click forward and you will be presented with teh partion editor (it will look different than when you used Gparted earlier), it should look something like this:

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Now you will want to edit the Ext4 partition and specify the mount point as /
yes that’s right, just /

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Select the Ext4 as your Ubuntu partition (i.e. root) and select your Linux-swap partition as the swap. You may check the “format” box for the Ext4 and Linux-Swap partitions (you might as well), but DO NOT select format for the other partitions or you will lose everything!

Proceed to the next step. Step 5 should be your user data section. Fill in your user info and proceed:

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Forward and you should be to step 7 which is just a confirmation step to verify you want to proceed with the install as you’ve specified. Look it over and then if it all checks out OK click forward.

Click to view full size
Click to view full size

Now you can safely walk away from your computer for a little while. Times may vary, but it shouldn’t take TOO long. Unlike a Windows installation, you don’t have to sit around and wait for further prompting for setup in the middle of the install… No sir, you can just relax, your work is done.

Once the install is complete you may continue using the Live USB Ubuntu but wouldn’t it be more fun to restart and test out your new dual boot?! When you restart it will likely prompt you to remove your USB disk and then hit enter to finish the reboot.

When your system reboots you will see the GRUB menu (provided you removed the USB disk or changed the boot order). You can try booting into Windows to make sure you didn’t mess anything up there, but what fun is that – do it later! Boot into Ubuntu (the first option by default) and let’s do some customizing!

Extras

Now that your fresh install of Ubuntu 9.04 Netbook Remix you will likely be eager to hop on the internet or do whatever it is you normally do. Try to resist that urge for just a few minutes.

If you are following this tutorial (assuming you are doing a dual boot) you are at least familiar with Windows XP and likely even more used to using Windows than Linux. Here are some things you should do right away to have many of the same features you are familiar with in Windows:

First make sure you have allowed the proper sources by going to

Administration->Software Sources

Then on the “Ubuntu Software” tab make sure the top 4 (or top 5 if you want sources) are checked under “Downloadable from the internet”

Check to enable all sources...
Check to enable all sources...

Next open your terminal (Accessories menu (on left) -> Terminal) and run the following commands…

sudo wget http://www.medibuntu.org/sources.list.d/jaunty.list -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install msttcorefonts ttf-mscorefonts-installer

sudo apt-get install sun-java6-jre sun-java6-plugin

You will be prompted to accept the Java license agreement. Press Tab to highlight the “OK” and hit enter.

Press Tab to highlight OK
Press Tab to highlight OK

sudo apt-get install filezilla flashplugin-nonfree mplayer mozilla-mplayer helix-player mozilla-helix-player non-free-codecs ubuntu-restricted-extras thunderbird

sudo wget http://wine.budgetdedicated.com/apt/sources.list.d/jaunty.list -O /etc/apt/sources.list.d/winehq.list

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install wine wine-dev

Alex

Alex is a professional web and mobile developer. He loves spending time with his wife and kids, and is still very much a kid at heart. He enjoys reading comic books, watching TV/Movies, playing video games, playing with action figures and Legos.

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