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I used Universal-USB-Installer-v1.5.1 from PenDriveLinux.com with Kubuntu 10.04 so I could set up my 4GB flash drive as a totally independent installation. Unfortunately, there was an OS upgrade available which Kubuntu downloaded and attempted to install. This, along with some other software, apparently maxed out my drive before I realized it.

Now when I try to boot from the drive, everything boots as normal to the OS boot screen where I select "Boot from this Kubuntu USB Installation." The startup process initiates, then stalls about halfway through and hangs indefinitely. I'm guessing the drive is trying to use space it doesn't have and completely stops working.

I realize that once the OS upgrade is in place, the old files could be deleted for a potential 700MB space gain. However, I just have no way to get into the OS and complete the upgrade.

My main OS is Windows 7. Is there a way I can fix this issue from within Windows without formatting the entire drive and reinstalling Kubuntu from scratch?

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If you can boot into Linux some other way (via livecd maybe), you could plug in your flashdrive and do chroot /media/flashdrivename. chroot changes the root of your current running OS to a given path, basically meaning you're now running of your flash drive. You could then possibly finish the update, or at least uninstall some unneeded files. I haven't tested this, though, so be careful and back everything up first.

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Well, but the problem is that there is no extra space left on the flash drive, so if I switched my root over to the current running OS, e.g. LiveCD, then I'd still be having the same problems, right? –  NoCatharsis May 18 '10 at 5:44
    
It's possible, but you also might be able to apt-get remove something nonessential and finish the upgrade. –  stillinbeta May 18 '10 at 19:28

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