I have Debian (Lenny) installation on a Dell Vostro v13. The laptop doesn't have a CD/DVD-ROM drive so the only way for me to install Ubuntu on it is via USB- unless I attach an external CD/DVD-ROM. How can I create an Ubuntu live USB on my Debian machine? Is UNetbootin my only option or is there another way? Thanks.


I believe dd would also be a viable option:

dd if=________.iso of=/dev/sd_

Where 'if' is your input file and 'of' is your output file (ie device).

  • 2
    Have you tried this? It doesn't work on newer Ubuntu versions (the drive is not bootable).
    – quant
    Sep 13 '14 at 6:36

You can use tools like UNetbootin, usb-creator etc to do it. Or you could manually do it :

  • Copy/Extract files from the ISO to the root dir of your USB Drive
  • Set the boot flag for your usb ddevice(use gparted or cfdisk)
  • run : syslinux -sm /dev/your_usb_dev
  • Create syslinux.cfg file in usb root dir with content : include isolinux/isolinux.cfg
  • 1
    According to man syslinux there's no such option as -m. Very interesting though, I'll try it soon!
    – cYrus
    Aug 24 '10 at 12:55

As root, just:

cat the_ubuntu.iso > /dev/sdX



… and voilà.

  • Or you can use dd. Will be faster.
    – kinokijuf
    Sep 23 '12 at 17:28

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