Install Ubuntu 10.04.4 Server on laptop without a CD Drive


I'm having major difficulties installing Ubuntu 10.04.4 Server on my 1 year old laptop (Samsung N145 Plus), which doesn't have a CD drive. The laptop came with Win7 Starter pre-installed.

I've been trying to install via a USB flash memory drive, and while I can get it to boot and start the Ubuntu installer, it fails because it starts looking for a CD-ROM early in the install process.

I've searched the Ubuntu forums and lots of other places without being able to find instructions that actually work.

Has anyone here been successful?

The reason I wish to install this particular distribution is that my Linode is running 10.04 LTS, and I want to create a development machine that mirrors my VPS setup.

The ISO I downloaded can't boot from within Win7 using PowerISO, so the way I see it, USB is my only option. I use an iPhone for my gateway, thus can't do a net via the ethernet port. My laptop does have a wireless network interface but that requires drivers too, which are not available until after I install Ubuntu.

Can anyone suggest a method, wiht a corresponding guide that I can follow to achieve my objective? Is there a way of making the ubuntu-10.04.4-server-i386.iso bootable from PowerISO?



5 Replies

My advise would be to install virtualbox or vmware player on windows and create your own virtual machine.

Have you considered Wubi? … -installer">

It installs Ubuntu on a Windows machine from inside of Windows like you would install any other program. Even gives you an entry in add/remove programs for Ubuntu. Ubuntu is installed to a disk image, and when you boot into Linux, it mounts the disk image as a drive, so you really are booting the whole machine into Linux. If you later decide that you want to convert it to a "real" installation (with an Ubuntu partition instead of an Ubuntu disk image), it has a utility that automates that.

Thnx for the suggestions :)

The main reason for wanting to install that distribution (Server version) is that I'm aiming to create a mirror of my Linode server.

Windows is a resource hog, and to be honest, I really want a fully Linux machine. I am tired of dealing with Microsoft, too much happening under the hood that I don't like. (I wish Win2000 was still supported, but that's not really relevant here.)

This laptop is basically a minimum capacity machine. I purchased it primarily for use on my catamaran that I live on. I use 12V deep cycle batteries and it's ideal for the environment. The existing Win7 Starter OS is already slow, and I fear that virtualising a linux machine on top of it will be unsatisfactory.

I don't mind having to do a bunch of manual steps to make things work, it's just that I haven't found a guide that actually works.

I'm considering borrowing/renting/buying a usb cd drive from the computer shop at the university where I'm studying so I can install from a CD.

Couple more questions:

If I install the desktop version (10.04), how much of a difference would it be? (From what I understand, it's the Server version that has issues being installed from a USB Drive.)

If I install Ubuntu 12.04, is that close enough?



As a note, Linode does not install Ubuntu Server, they install the minimal installation of Ubuntu in general (technically the desktop version, but without the UI, or almost any other packages). What are you trying to accomplish here, produce a usable system for general purpose use, or just to produce something like your linode? A linode has no GUI, it would be text shell only, as would be Ubuntu Server.

If you're trying to produce a system for daily use, you're going to want a GUI. If it's older hardware, you don't necessarily want regular Ubuntu (with GNOME), but something more resource-light. Lubuntu (the LXDE version of Ubuntu), for example, uses roughly half the RAM for the default desktop.

Also, it's worth keeping in mind that, if your primary concern is power use, an older laptop is the wrong approach, since it'll use far more power than a faster modern system. My previous (before current one) laptop would be outperformed by an Ultrabook, but the Ultrabook would use maybe one quarter the power.

Save yourself a bunch of problems and just buy a cheap ($30-ish) external USB dvd burner. Plug it in when you need it, store it away when you don't.


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