Ubuntu is one of the most popular and most used Linux distributions by users, especially by those who are beginning to take the first steps in this operating system. Although it is not the distribution that best reflects the Linux philosophy, this is one of the easiest to install, configure and use, making it a great starting point from which to start learning. And although this distro is designed so that no user can have problems, there are always points about it that can lead to confusion. Especially when installing Ubuntu .
The Ubuntu installation wizard is one of the simplest that we will find. This has a graphical interface and a wizard that will guide us throughout the process. The only point that could give us problems would be when choosing the disk and creating partitions. Everything else is very simple and, as we will demonstrate below, we can have an Ubuntu ready on our computer in a matter of minutes.
Preliminary steps: download the ISO and create a USB
The first thing we will need to be able to install Ubuntu on our computer is to download the operating system. This can be found at the following link to the official Canonical page, specifically within the “Download” tab at the top.
Here we are going to find the different versions of the distro that have support. We recommend you download the LTS version , since it will have 5-year support and will save us having to update all versions every 9 months.
We will download the Desktop edition , which is the desktop edition. This will occupy about 2.5 GB, and will be downloaded to the computer in ISO format. If we are going to install Ubuntu in a virtual machine we can do it directly from the ISO. Otherwise, we will have to burn the ISO to a DVD or, even better, to a USB memory.
For this process we recommend using the Rufus program , which can be downloaded from here . This program will allow us to create a bootable USB memory from any ISO image.
We will select the USB memory where we want to record Ubuntu , we will load the ISO and in a couple of minutes we will have the installation medium created. Of course, keep in mind that during the process the data will be erased from memory.
When the process ends, the only thing we will have to do is turn off the computer, configure the BIOS so that the computer boots from said USB memory, and the Ubuntu installation process will begin.
Install Ubuntu step by step
Ubuntu is an operating system designed to start in Live Mode, that is, to be loaded into RAM memory from ISO and allow us to test it without installing or altering anything on the system. The first thing we will see when the operating system finishes loading will be a screen like the following.
In it we will have to choose our language , and also if we want to try Ubuntu, or if we want to directly launch the installation wizard. The result in both cases will be the same, but we are going to use the “test” option to be able to load Ubuntu on the PC and be able to use it while we install it.
When we see the desktop, here we will have an icon called “Install Ubuntu” .
We double click on it to launch the installation wizard . The first thing we will find is the possibility to choose the language of the installer, as well as to read the publication notes.
We continue, and in the next step the wizard will allow us to configure the language and keyboard layout . We can choose it ourselves from the list, or let the program automatically detect it through a series of keystrokes.
We continue with the installation. The next point will allow us to choose the type of installation we want to do. Ubuntu offers us two types of installation:
- Normal: installs a series of essential programs to be able to use the distro for everything from browsing to office automation, games and multimedia.
- Minimum: a much smaller installation. It includes a web browser and the minimum packages necessary to function.
The recommended option for most users is the normal installation. In addition, here we can also choose if we want to download updates at the same time that we install the operating system, or if we want to include the proprietary software to automatically install the drivers for the GPU or Wi-Fi cards, in addition to a series of proprietary codecs .
Create partitions for Ubuntu
In the next step we can choose how to install Ubuntu on the hard drive . If we have another operating system already installed, the wizard will give us the option to install it together with it. Otherwise, it will allow us to erase the entire disk and automatically configure it to install the distro on it. Of course, this second option will erase all the data that we have stored on that hard drive in order to format it and create the standard partition table.
The installation wizard allows us to choose if we want to use a data encryption system, in addition to activating an experimental option to use a ZFS file system .
If we choose ” More options ” instead of using the entire disk, we can open the Ubuntu partition manager. And from here we can create the partitions that we want to use. This is recommended for users who have a certain level of knowledge. If we do not have them, it is best to opt for automatic mode.
If we choose the automatic mode, we recommend creating at least the following partitions:
- / – Root of the Linux distro.
- / home – where we will keep all our personal data. It has to be the largest partition.
- / boot – place where we will install the bootloader.
When everything is ready, we will click on ” Install now ” to begin the installation process. And we can see a summary with the partitions and mount points that we are going to use.
If everything is correct, we continue and the copy of the operating system data will begin. But even though the files are already being copied, we still haven’t finished configuring Ubuntu.
Last steps to finish the installation
While the data is copied from our Ubuntu and the selected configurations are applied, we will have to finish some essential configurations. The first of them will be to choose our region , where we live. This will be used to adjust the metric system, the time zone and the currency used.
We will also have to create our main user . This will consist of a username, a password and the name that we want to give to the networked PC. We can also choose whether or not we want you to log in automatically.
Ready. We have already configured Ubuntu. Now we just have to wait for the operating system installation process to complete . This may take more or less depending on the PC hardware and whether or not we have chosen to download the updates during this process. While the installation lasts we will be able to see some of the characteristics and uses of Ubuntu.
When the process of copying the data is finished, we will see a message like the following that will indicate that our Ubuntu has been installed correctly and that we will have to restart the PC to finish the installation and start using this new operating system.
What to do after installing Ubuntu
After restarting the computer we will have our Ubuntu installed and ready to go. Initially, Ubuntu will be fully functional. We will not have to do anything to start using this operating system. But there are always some small recommendations that will allow us to fully enjoy this distro.
The first thing we should do after installation is done is make sure the distro is up to date, with all patches installed. We can easily do this by opening a terminal and executing the following command:
sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
When we finish downloading the updates we will have our system up to date.
LivePatch is an Ubuntu function that will allow us to install security patches on the “hot” distro, that is, without having to restart the computer to complete the update process. This is very useful especially when we work with the PC, since we can always be protected without having to interrupt the operation of the PC.
We can find this option by searching for “Livepatch” in the program launcher. Of course, to use it we will need an Ubuntu One account, an account that we can create for free.
Install the programs we want
Ubuntu comes by default with a large amount of software installed by default, software thanks to which we will be able to use the system without problems. However, if we do not like any of the applications that are installed by default (for example, Firefox), we will be able to replace them with the programs that we want, in this case, Google Chrome or Chromium.
We can download installers in .deb format from the websites, install them through “apt” from the terminal, or look them up in the Ubuntu software store. The latest versions of Ubuntu also allow us to install software through its Snap packages.
In this way we can adapt our Ubuntu to our needs, and work with it in the most productive way possible.