I'm running Ubuntu and using about 45GB of HD space.

I also have a 64GB USB stick. I know how to make a bootable / live USB stick. What I want to do is export my Ubuntu OS in its current state (installed programs, config files, media, etc) to the USB stick so that all of the data is stored on the stick, and I can boot into it from another machine.

How can this be done?

  • 1
    I've found this answer, have you tried that? askubuntu.com/a/645370 – hyph Mar 9 '17 at 3:24
  • Remastersys could do this. There's supposed to be a new fork but its been kinda in limbo for ages – Journeyman Geek Mar 9 '17 at 3:47

There's Clonezilla, a small linux live distribution which is doing exactly this task:

Somebody explained it in this answer on AskUbuntu:


  1. Download Clonezilla from http://clonezilla.org/downloads/download.php?branch=stable (download the ISO)

  2. Download Live Linux USB Creator (Lili) from http://www.linuxliveusb.com/en/download

  3. Create a bootable Clonezilla (Live Clonezilla) on USB by running Live Linux USB Creator.

  4. Configure your Source desktop / laptop to boot from a USB drive

  5. Insert both, the destination external hard drive or destination USB Flash drive in 1 USB Slot and the Clonezilla Live USB drive in other slot and boot.

  6. Clonezilla will take some time to read partition info When the Clonezilla UI appears, select default menu entries.

  7. [With Caution] select Source Partition info and Destination partition info It may be noted that Clonezilla would require space on destination USB Flash drive or external hard disk which is equivalent of the source Hard disk and it will erase all data from the destination USB Flash drive / external hard drive.

  8. Once all is selected, Clonezilla will create a live OS on the destination drive / flash drive

  9. Test the cloned OS by removing Clonezilla Live USB drive and booting from the Live OS which has been cloned onto the destination External drive / USB Flash drive.

  • Clonezilla and Lili are both really awesome tools and can certainly solve your problem – ProdIssue Mar 9 '17 at 13:15
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    Surprised after hours and hours trying to get this to work; yep - now, finally, I have my Debian OS with a http-server from an Intel NUC with a 250 GB SSD running on a standard 16 GB USB / SD booting into a desktop environment in less than a few seconds. Amazed. :D – K. Kilian Lindberg Dec 16 '20 at 9:08

i copied the partition with clonezilla to a usb but then it didn't boot. I had to then put the disk into a computer not running ubuntu. (windows only machine ) and then boot up with a bootable ubuntu and run the boot repair on the usb copy of ubuntu. This worked and i got a bootable version of my ubunut install.. The only downside is my windows wouldnt boot after this for some reason and i had to reimage this back with easetodo . Thankfully I had an image.

Ubuntu asked if it was removable disk and I said no. Maybe that is why my windows got messed up. Hope this helps.

One more thing. You have to shrink your imaged partition so its

smaller than the usb drive with gparted before you image it with clonezilla.

  • This is more feedback (better post this as a comment below my answer) than an actual answer. Just a pointer how this site works, thanks for the feedback! – hyph Nov 9 '18 at 14:33

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