UPDATE 11/23/2020: Am reclaiming Media Library space by deleting old pics. Trying to thin out the Media Library’s pics from posts that get few visits … hopefully it doesn’t ruin your view of the post.

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Since I now have 5 computers, I’ve been experimenting on ways to create an easy way to use Ubuntu 18.04.3 on all 5 of them. Ace the Laptop already has Ubuntu installed on it, and Antec Sr. also has Ubuntu installed on an SSD that I swap out of the Hot Swap SATA bay whenever I want to change OSes or do some testing. That Ubuntu Antec Sr. SSD will work on the other computers also, but I want to have Ubuntu on a USB since USB ports seem to be on everything now.

As mentioned in my Windows 7 Users – Create a Persistent Storage ‘Live’ USB post, Ubuntu is one of the few Linux Distros that offers a ‘Live’ USB Persistent Storage option; however, it didn’t allow for updates. Saved most everything else, e.g. settings, bookmarks, documents, etc. but wouldn’t do updates – may not have worked on the new Antec Jr. build since the GeForce GTX 1660 needs Ubuntu to update to that Nvidia driver. Creating a ‘Live’ USB is easy on most Linux Distros, but it really limits how much testing you can do…a ‘Live’ USB with Persistent Storage is a lot better, since your settings and such get saved each time you shut it down, but most Distros don’t have that option. BionicPup and Kodachi have Persistent Storage basically built into them, as do a few other Distros that are focused on USB installations. I use BionicPup to fix both Linux and/or Windows problems, so consider it a ‘Specialty’ focused Linux Distro. I also use Kodachi as a ‘Specialty’ Distro focused on privacy and security. For true ‘Desktop‘ duty, no Linux Distro comes close to beating Ubuntu 18.04.3 (no, not even Ubuntu 19.10).

Another problem that shows up when installing a full Linux Distro onto a USB drive is that it usually takes a long time, if it can even do a full install onto a USB, e.g. I tried installing Ubuntu 19.10 onto a USB and gave up after roughly an hour & fifteen minutes. Some Distros taken even longer…others fail to boot up after trying to install it for over an hour & thirty minutes. Most Distros just don’t seem to work on USB other than a basic ‘Live’ version. Some USB’s are bad or just not made for a full Linux installation, which is another problem that shows up. Most of the ones made for doing a full install onto a USB seem too light and weak, i.e. BionicPup blows them away.

Yesterday, I did a full install of Ubuntu 18.04.3 onto an ADATA 64GB 3.0 USB, and it took right at forty minutes. It’s like less than five minutes to install Ubuntu onto SSD. Still, you may have family and friends like yourself who are thinking about what happens when Windows 7 “Extended” support ends around 1/14/2020 … ”Mainstream” support actually ended on 1/13/2015, and y’all are looking at options. There are various adapters you could use to test an SSD Ubuntu installation, e.g. StarTech USB 3.0 to 2.5″ SATA III Hard Drive Adapter Cable (*ONLY* for SSD or 2.5” HDD) or maybe a USB 3.0 to SATA External Hard Drive Docking Station that handles either 2.5” or 3.5” disks. That way y’all could pass the disk and adapter/dock around to try it…or, save some money, and just make a Ubuntu USB installation for each interested person. Do some ‘Live’ versions to test first, and if that is liked then do a full USB or SSD/HDD installation. Plenty of options there.

Updated the full Ubuntu USB installation this morning, and it has worked on all 5 of my computers. Did have to update the GeForce GTX 1660 driver for the Antec Jr. test…looked like 480 x 480 display instead of 1920 x 1080 before updating the driver, so that was a pain to move around in. Here’s how to do that on a USB already having the full Ubuntu installed on it:

 

Open Ubuntu’s Software and Updates icon/program then select the Additional Drivers tab. It was using the X.Org X driver so I switched it to the NVIDA 430 driver. Started to try updating the Kernel first, but it was already at 5.0 something, so a GPU this old should’ve already been in the Kernel if it was every going to be put in. Hardest part was moving around in that 480p or 576p display setting. Standard onboard GPU’s worked fine on the other 4 computers. Separate GPU’s are probably going to need the Third Party driver updates, especially if they are powerful. BTW, I only recommend doing something like this *ENTIRE* process on the Ubuntu 18.04.3 Linux Distro. Also, try getting a 32-64 GB 3.0 USB to do this full install. Smaller USB’s, 2.0 or 3.0, are fine for installing just the ‘Live’ version, but I go bigger for the full installation. I even did the full installation from a 16GB ‘Live’ USB to the 64GB USB. I had also prepped my USB by selecting the “cleared” format option in GParted.

1 – Then selected “Something else” for Installation Type
2 – Make sure you select the correct drive for installation, then click “New Partition Table” box
3 – Select the free space just created, then click the “+” button, that brings up a popup
4 – In the popup enter 900-1029 MB’s for Size
5 – Select “Primary” for partition option and “Beginning of this space” for location option
6 – Select “Fat32 file system” from the Use as: dropdown menu
7 – Select /windows from the Mount Point dropdown…then click OK
8 – Select the remaining free space, then click the “+” button again to get another popup window
9 – Leave the default/Max “Size” as is…it will be what’s left of free space
10 – Select “Primary” for partition option and “Beginning of this space” for location option
11 – Use as: Ext4 journaling file system from the dropdown
12 – Select “/” from the Mount Point dropdown…click OK

Depending on the size of your USB, you have something like this next:

 

That’s a different USB pic from my final 64GB one, but it shows the same process, i.e. we have created a 1027 MB fat32 /windows partition (/dev/sdb1), and a 29999 MB (or whatever remained after fat32) ext4 / partition (/dev/sdb2)…now, make sure your installation USB is selected in “Device for boot loader installation” dropdown…then click “Install Now” button.

I did the “Normal installation” with no internet and left “Install third-party software” blank – might should have installed third-party software, but my tests were going waaaayy too long for other Distros when those options were selected. So, I don’t know if that GeForce GTX 1660 driver would have been installed that way. May do another test at a later date to see, but not now.

Here are the computer info pics of the full Ubuntu 18.04.3 installation USB on them…first – Ace the Laptop:

 

Next is InWin:

 

Next is – Rose:

 

Antec Sr. is baaaaaaaaaaaaaaack:

 

Last, but certainly not least, is Antec Jr. the newest build:

 

BTW, that new i9 9900 CPU runs naturally at 4666-4900+GHz when needed, and I didn’t make any changes in BIOS. Runs way low for minor tasks and cranks it up automatically for major tasks. It beat the i9 9900k on some CPU-Z bench tests I have run. It gets real “Hot” on Stress tests, but never reached “Critical” red stage…all conducted using that stock Intel fan and cooler that comes with it. Am sure, however, if I were a gamer, that I would need to upgrade to a much better fan/cooler, but so far it seems fine for what I require.

Oh, the Device named “ubu” in those pics was the new fully installed USB…and, this post will be Part 8 on the WIN 7 series: For Windows 7 users page.

Rule of Thumb – if you can’t install Ubuntu on it, then you can’t install any Linux Distro on it.