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Want To Boot Linux From A Flash Drive?

unetbootin02.pngI have tried a lot of different Linux distro’s, they all have iso’s you can put on a CD. But this would take a crazy number of CD’s.  There are ways to put a distro on a USB flash drive yourself see  What if you just don’t want to bother with installing different pieces of software to get the USB flash drive to boot?

Unetbootin Install Linux Distro’s On A Flash Drive With Out Hassle

After burning a million CD’s I decided to search for a better solution.  I found Unetbootin. Unetbootin will automatically download and install Linux iso’s to your USB flash drive.  I’m always looking for applications that make my life easier.  Unetbootin saves me the time of having to burn every distro I want to try to disk.  Let’s face it, we are still in an economic crisis and saving money is a good thing.


There are two ways to install Unetbootin.  You can install it out of the repositories using Synaptic or adept.  But this will to allow you to install the latest version of Kubuntu Jaunty Jackalope 9.04.  For that you have to install the version you can download from their website.  For the website version there is no install necessary.  The download is a executable file.  Download the file and make it executable make sure you are in the directory you downloaded it to:
In terminal:

sudo chmod +x ~/Desktop/unetbootin-linux*

unetbootin01.pngOr the point and click way:
Right click on unetbootin-linux-323 and select properties. Click the Permissions tab mark the box in front of Is executable. Now you are able to click on the binary. A password prompt will pop-up put in your sudo password. Unetbootin will start and you are ready to make bootable flash drives.


You can select a distribution to put on the flash drive as said, this will download and install the distro to the flash drive.  Select an iso that you have already downloaded and install that to the flash drive.  Or make a custom Kernel install with your own Initrd and options.  Select the drive (it also can install distros to the hardrive) and click OK.  Unetbootin will now download the iso, then install it to the flash drive.


Unetbootin is a great application. The only thing I wish it had out of the box, is support for multiple distro’s.  It does have a boot manager so it should not be to difficult to support.  I might be able to figure out how to do this.  If so I’ll write another blog post about it.

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