Linux is a good, free alternative for anyone looking to leave Windows. If you still need the Microsoft operating system or don’t want to lose it, it’s also possible. To do this, you need to dual boot your computer.
Dual boot is the name given to installing two operating systems on the same machine. When starting the equipment — that is, booting — it is possible to choose which one will be used. In this way, you can use the most appropriate option for each moment and need, such as Windows for playing games and Linux for working, for example.
In the following guide, you will learn how to install Ubuntu on a machine that already has Windows. The process may vary depending on your computer or systems chosen.
Time needed: 2 hours.
- Download Ubuntu
If you have a Windows computer, you will need to download Ubuntu to install it on your computer. Go to the system’s official website and download it. The LTS (long-term support) version is recommended as it is more stable and supported for five years.
- Create a bootable disk
The Ubuntu file is .iso, and you can’t run it directly inside Windows. You need to create a bootable disk, which will be read by the computer when it starts. The easiest way to do this is with a USB drive.
Ubuntu recommends the balenaEtcher program, which is compatible with Linux, Windows and Mac.
Download the program and install it. Then choose the image, select the flash drive and click the “Flash!” button.
- Reboot to boot
Pendrive ready, now it’s time to put it to work. Restart the computer with the drive stuck in the USB port.
Usually the machine recognizes the component and uses it to start the system. If it doesn’t, see the settings to put the USB input at the top of priorities.
The process may vary by brand and model. A good try is to press and hold the F12 key while booting.
- start installation
When the computer reads the USB drive, an Ubuntu welcome screen should appear. You can either try the system without changing anything on your machine or install it.
In this tutorial, we go straight to the second option.
- Choose language and keyboard layout
The first step is to choose the language and type of keyboard you use. Usually Ubuntu automatically detects these two parameters.
If you have doubts, you can also test the keyboard or redo the process manually.
- configure the installation
Then Ubuntu gives you some options to install the system. You can opt for a full installation or a minimal one.
The first one takes longer, but the system comes ready for most cases. The second is faster, but you may need to install some programs manually, depending on what you’re going to use.
You can also choose to download updates (takes longer, but the machine is ready at once) and install third-party drivers (recommended for those with dedicated graphics cards).
- Choose the option to install Ubuntu alongside Windows
This step is important. This is where you’ll start installing Ubuntu alongside Linux, so you can dual boot when powering on.
Choose the option “Install Ubuntu alongside Windows 10” (if your Windows is different, its version will appear here). This is the simplest and most straightforward alternative and we will use it in this tutorial.
There is also the “Advanced option”, which shows a table of partitions (divisions of your storage disks). It is recommended for advanced users.
- Choose partition size
Soon after, the installer gives the option to adjust the division between the disk partitions. Just drag the bar between the two spaces to the sides. It’s good to leave a reasonable amount of free space for both systems, so that neither one runs out of space very quickly. You can change this later, but the process is not so simple.
- Create your username and password
On the next screen, you will need to give your computer a name, define your username and create a password. After installation, you can create more users.
- Wait for the installation
Wait for the process to complete.
- Choose the system to use
After installation, every time you turn on the PC, you will see a screen to choose which operating system will be used in that session.