Saturday, January 15, 2011

Running Ubuntu from a Thumb Drive

I would like to see if owning a netbook helps my family.  Mostly it might help because we are using Skype a lot.  I would get some use from having a computer that travels well in my diaper bag, and from having a computer to use when Smiley is using my laptop.

One source of hesitation is that I have no reason to leave Ubuntu and return to the world of Windows--but the netbooks that are easiest to try out (with the best return policy) are all Windows machines sold at CostCo.  However, this turns out to be a very small problem.

Dual booting is almost obsolete.  Since modern computers are willing to boot of a USB thumb drive, and inexpensive USB thumb drives have more than enough memory for running Ubuntu, the new solution is to book your netbook off a USB thumb drive when you want Ubuntu instead of Windows.

Here is a quick guide to putting a normal Ubuntu Desktop boot on a USB thumb drive.

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