Thursday, April 26, 2018

Installing Ubuntu Along With Windows

In this post we’ll see how to install Ubuntu along with Windows so that you have a dual boot Ubuntu-Windows system.

This post shows the steps for the system, where Windows is already installed. You want to install Ubuntu too on that single drive and want to have a dual boot option to boot either of the operating systems.

Installation steps

Let’s first see pre installation steps in brief to have an understanding what all is needed for Ubuntu installation and then we’ll go into explanations. Here I have installed Ubuntu 16.04.3 on Windows 10.

  1. Backup you existing data– This is the first thing you should do, backup important data from your existing Windows system. Though it is optional but highly recommended.
  2. Create free space– You need to create free space in any of the partition in your drive for the Ubuntu installation. Minimum requirement is 5 GB but practically you will need at least 20 GB as Ubuntu installation itself occupies around 4.5 GB.
  3. Download Ubuntu– Download the required version of Ubuntu from this location - Better to go with the latest LTS (Long Term Support) version.
  4. Create a bootable UEFI drive– From windows 8 firmware used is UEFI so first thing you should do is to verify the boot mode. Whether it is UEFI or legacy, accordingly create a Ubuntu bootable media for installation.
  5. Disabling fast startup and secure boot in windows– You may need to disable fast startup and secure boot in Windows for dual boot. Though latest versions of Ubuntu come with secure boot and fast startup support.

These are the steps you need to follow in order to install Ubuntu along side Windows. Now let’s go through these steps in detail and with some screen shots.

1. Backup your existing data

Before starting the installation process ensure you have planned for recovery. Most probably nothing will go wrong and you will have a dual boot system but do make sure to back up the existing data on your system. You can also create a bootable drive for Windows and keep that also for any emergency.

2. Create free space

Next thing is to create free space in your disk where Ubuntu will be installed. In your drive either you will be having a single partition with Windows installed on it or you will already be having more than one partition.

If you already have more partitions then you can shrink any of the other partition rather than the partition where Windows is installed.

For creating partitions you need to open “Disk Management” tool. Open Run and type diskmgmt.msc that will open Disk Management tool.

Once tool is opened select the partition where you want to allocate space for Ubuntu installation and right click - select “Shrink Volume” option. In the window that opens enter the amount of space to shrink in MB. That will shrink the existing partition by that amount and create free space.

space for ubuntu installation

3. Download Ubuntu

Download the required version of Ubuntu from this location - and save it in your hard disk.

4. Create a bootable UEFI drive

Using the Ubuntu image which you have downloaded you need to create a bootable media (USB or DVD) that will be used for booting Ubuntu and initiating the installation.

Before creating the bootable drive check the boot mode of you system because boot mode of your Ubuntu installation should match the boot mode of the existing OS.

Go to RUN dialog and type msinfo32, press enter.

In System Summary look for “BIOS Mode” in the right pane. Check for its value if it is “UEFI” or “Legacy”

I used rufus tool to create a bootable USB, you can see steps for doing that here - How to Create Ubuntu Bootable USB

5. Disabling fast startup and secure boot in windows

From Windows 8 a new feature Fast Startup has been added for quick boot. You may need to disable it for ensuring dual boot.

Go to Control Panel - Power Options – choose what the power button does There, in Shutdown settings section uncheck “Turn on fast startup” option to disable it.

For disabling Secure boot you will have to go to Start up menu on starting your system. There in Boot option you will see the option for enabling Secure Boot.

Installing Ubuntu

With the above 5 steps all the pre-installation steps are over and you are ready to install Ubuntu. For that you need to boot using the USB drive you created in step-4.

Restart your system and plug the USB, in the startup options you will have to change the boot option to boot from USB/DVD. So press F12, F10, ESC key as per your system specification and change the boot option.

Ubuntu installation

Once you boot using the bootable media you created, you should get the GRUB screen with few options. There select “Install Ubuntu” and press Enter.

Then you will see a Welcome screen with an option to choose language. Select your preferred language and click continue.

ubuntu installation language

After that comes the “Preparing to install Ubuntu” screen. There you will have two options

  • Download updates while installing.
  • Install third party software for graphics ....

You can select both of these options if you are connected to internet or you can update and install third party software later too once you are done with Ubuntu installation.

Then comes the “Installation Type” where recommendation is to create partitions manually by choosing “Something else”.

Create three manual partitions for /root, /home and swap area (optional).

  • /root- It is the partition to keep OS files like kernel, boot files, libraries etc.
  • Swap– It is the area where inactive memory pages can be moved when physical memory (RAM) is full.
  • /home– It is the partition where user’s file are kept like documents, music, images, videos.

In the window that comes after selecting “Something else” option select the free space you created in Step-2 and press ‘+’ sign.

Creating root ‘/’ partition

Once you select the ‘+’ sign a window opens for giving options for your root partition. There enter the size for root partition. Select Mount type as ‘/’. Leave the Use as option as default - Ext4 journaling file system. Refer image for other options.

Creating Swap area

Press the ‘+’ again, select “Use as” option as “Swap area” and size of swap area can be equal to RAM size or double of that. Refer image for other options.

Creating /home partition

Press the ‘+’ again, select Mount type as ‘/home’ partition. Size of /home should be rest of the free space. Refer image for other options.

Have another look at the created partitions to ensure all looks fine then click “Install now”. This will start the Ubuntu installation.

You will get option to select location.

Option to select “Keyboard layout”.

Option to set up a user. Where you need to enter user name and password.

Installer will complete the installation in background.

Once the installation finishes and you restart the system you will have to boot using Ubuntu boot manager so change the boot order using start up options.

Booting Ubuntu should present a GRUB (Grand Unified Bootloader) screen with dual boot option to boot Ubuntu or Windows.

That's all for this topic Installing Ubuntu Along With Windows. If you have any doubt or any suggestions to make please drop a comment. Thanks!

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