How to create a USB pen that can be booted from Ubuntu

If you are reading this article, you probably have had my problem: creating a USB bootable pen from Ubuntu (specifically Ubuntu 16.04) seems almost impossible.

Apparently, the Ubuntu Startup Creator tool  and  Unetbootin recently have some problems in creating a bootable and working 100% USB.

For this reason I have been looking for a valid alternative to Unetbootin and solving the problem seems to be  Etcher. This is an easy to use and multiplatform application, so it is compatible with Linux, Windows and MacOS. Let’s see how it works right now.

Help: How to Create a USB Pen from Ubuntu

First of all we must go to the official site and download Etcher.

After clicking on the button to start the download, the site will alert us that this application uses AppImages to boot, i.e. it does not need any installation. Just click on the downloaded zip file and start the file. A message may come out of the first boot, we will confirm it and after a few seconds the following screen will appear.

USB pen
Image Source: Google Image

The interface is very simple and intuitive. There are enough 3 steps to create our bootable USB pen.

  • First, select the already downloaded ISO image. If you have not downloaded it yet, I recommend choosing an LTS version as it will receive support for a long time. If you are interested in Ubuntu.
  • The second step is to select the USB pen on which we will write the operating system. The USB pen must have a minimum capacity of 2 GB. I recommend you form it first with  Gparted
  • Finally, as a third step, just click Flash to start the procedure that will take a few minutes. At the end your USB stick will be ready and running at 100%.

Why use Etcher instead of Unetbootin?

As mentioned earlier, Unetbootin seems not to work with Ubuntu 16.04, and the same applies to Disk Creator application. Another positive aspect is the interface: Etcher is much more user friendly and at the same time quick in creation.

The real advantage, however, lies in the verification after writing the USB pen; Unlike Unetbootin, Etcher writes the USB pen and checks its integrity. This guarantees the perfect functioning of the bootable USB key.

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