HowTo: Easiest Way to Install/Dual Boot Ubuntu on Windows
Previously, if you wanted to try or install/dual boot Ubuntu you’d have to use the live CD or create a partition on your computer with the latter being a daunting task for most users, especially those who don’t have much technical knowledge.
Now, with the help of the Wubi installer, you can try or install Ubuntu quickly and conveniently with your existing Windows-powered computer just like any other Windows program.
Wubi is an officially supported Ubuntu installer for Windows users that can bring you to the Linux world with a single click. Wubi allows you to install and uninstall Ubuntu as any other Windows application, in a simple and safe way. Are you curious about Linux and Ubuntu? Trying them out has never been easier!
I’ve used the Wubi installer to install Ubuntu on my old laptop the Compaq Presario C714NR and if you’ve noticed from my comments on this blog, I’ve been using Ubuntu a lot the past few months because I also installed Ubuntu on my Toshiba Satellite A305-S6872.
- Processor: 1 GHz or faster Intel/AMD processor
- Memory: 256 MB RAM
- Disk space: 5GB
If your computer meets the minimum system requirements then the next thing you need to do is download Wubi. Note that even though Wubi automatically downloads the Ubuntu installation file for you, you can also use an existing Ubuntu ISO/CD for installation. You can download the latest version of Ubuntu here. If you have a pre-downloaded ISO, it should be placed in the same folder as the wubi.exe.
In my experience, having/using a pre-downloaded ISO made the installation faster. Downloading it via Wubi took longer (this also depends on your Internet connection). When downloading your Ubuntu ISO, make sure you choose the right version for your computer 32-bit or 64-bit. To check what version your computer is running on, click on Start/Windows logo, right click on Computer, select Properties and look for System Type (either 32-bit or 64-bit Operating System).
Once you have the wubi installer and/or the ISO/CD, run the wubi.exe file and it will open this window:
1. Choose installation size (default is 15 GB).
2. Create a username.
3. Create and confirm a password.
You can also choose what Desktop Environment to install: Ubuntu/default (GNOME), Kubuntu (KDE) or Xubuntu (XFCE).
When you’re done, click Install and wait until installation process is finished then it will ask you to reboot your computer to complete the installation.
When the computer boots up again, the Windows Boot Manager will ask you which operating system to use. Select Ubuntu.
Ubuntu will be loaded and will continue/complete the installation process. Once the installation process is complete, it will reboot again. To start using Ubuntu, wait for the Windows Boot Manager screen and select Ubuntu then login using the username/password that you created earlier. To switch between Windows and Ubuntu, simply restart your computer and select with Operating System to run.
Uninstalling it is as easy as the installation. Just open Window’s Control Panel, select Add/Remove Programs, select Wubi/Ubuntu and uninstall it. Btw, Wubi works on all versions of Windows from Windows 98 to Windows Vista with the exception of Windows ME. If you have Linux/*nix/*BSD, you can use Lubi. Future plans include Mubi, a version for Mac OSX.
Here’s a screenshot of a regular Ubuntu desktop:
Here’s how my Ubuntu desktop looks like:
As you can see, I’ve customized it to imitate a Mac OSX Leopard desktop. If you want to know how to do this, I’ll be publishing a tutorial on how I did this in the coming weeks, so make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed so you won’t miss it.
Hope this simple tutorial helps you and give you the motivation to try Ubuntu. If you decide to try it out and install Ubuntu using Wubi and experience any problems, let me know by leaving a comment below or sending me a message via the Contact form and I’ll see what I can do to help.