Bootable Linux USB Drive: How-To

It’s a new year so we’ll cut to the chase and skip the intro/background part. You find yourself in some situation needing a bootable USB drive with Linux on it. So here it is:

1) Get your hands on a working computer and plug in the USB drive you’re going to use for this project.

2) Download a Linux disk image. I recommend either Ubuntu or Mint.

3) Download a universal USB installer. I recommend one from pendrivelinuxdotcom.

4) Run the installer.

5) Select the disk image.

6) Specify which drive is the USB. Check and double check this part to be sure.

7) Specify how much of the drive you want to use for persistent storage. This is optional.

8) Click on the “Create” button and wait.

Once it is done, plug in the USB to your machine and power it up. Some computers detect the USB and boot that up automatically, while others need a settings change. You need to get to the boot menu first. It usually shows which key it is while your computer is booting up. The most common ones are Esc, F2 and F8.

The Linux boot screen is very obvious. You’ll know when it’s doing its thing. For me, it’s easy enough to figure out how to use Linux. It has a graphical UI that is similar to Windows but only has different labels and positions for the basic stuff you need. Don’t be afraid to explore and try the applications it has on offer. If in doubt, check the documentation or their forum.

Hope this helps!


Remove Unused Grub2 Entries

I had to reinstall my Linux Mint 9 Isadora after messing with a new copy of Windows XP. Once the whole thing was complete. I ended up with two extra kernel versions that weren’t really installed but were still listed in the boot menu. I ignored it for the longest time until I asked myself today.

    How do I remove unwanted Grub2 entries?
    What happens if the entries are there but the kernel is not actually installed in Synaptic?

I looked around the web and found that most sites say the same thing. I did not want to manually edit the Grub2 configuration file because that would still leave the headers in my system. And I’m a bit OC when it comes to my toys. So I played around with it a bit and found a simple solution.

1) Find out the current kernel version by opening the Terminal and running: uname -r
2) Take note of the result. This command gave me “2.6.32-25-generic”.
3) Open Synaptic and then search for the 4 digits. For example, “2.6.32”.
4) Install the “ghost” kernel versions : Check the “Mark for Installation” box and hit “Apply”.
5) Opened terminal and run: sudo update-grub2
6) Uninstall the kernel versions : Check the “Mark for Complete Removal” box and hit “Apply”.
7) Go back to the Terminal and ran: sudo update-grub2

Linux Mint 9 Isadora is based on Linux Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx. I am pretty sure that the same set of instructions can be used for it too. Using these steps, I’ve removed everything from the Grub2 menu except the two latest kernel versions, the Memtest and the Windows entry. I hope this works for anyone else with the same issue.

Making Java Work On Firefox and Mint 9

I play a browser based online game and after installing Mint 9 Isadora, it stopped working. One part of the said game uses Javascript so I decided to check on that first. The following code is what I used to fix the issue:

sudo apt-get install sun-java6-jre sun-java6-plugin sun-java6-fonts

After running that in the terminal, i just opened my game again and it went through without a hitch!