Installing Linux Mint on top of Windows 10

Holla! ¿Está bien?

Let’s get started then. Perhaps you might be wondering, why Mint? Well, I like it because it is a little more beautiful than the other free distros, and yet offers a rich combination of both Debian and Ubuntu features.

Prerequisites

You will need to have either an 8 GB flash drive or an empty DVD/CD to carry the new operating system during installation. You will probably also need a good internet connection to download approximately 2 GB of Linux Mint, in case you don’t have it yet..

Getting Started

First things first, let us prepare some space on our computer for Linux Mint Installation. We’ll do this by shrinking some space in one of windows’ disk partitions.

  1. Strike the windows key on your computer keyboard and type partition, select  create and format hard disk partitions and strike enter.
  2. Once the disk partition menu pops up, left click on the disk partition that you wouldn’t mind shrinking. If I were you I wouldn’t pick disc (C:), unless it is the only one available in the menu, to avoid tempering with the disc that contains your windows OS. Select shrink volume, set the size you would like to shrink and press shrink. This creates an empty space on our hard drive where we shall install Linux Mint OS.

Now, let us grab a copy of Linux Mint from Linux Mint Website. For this tutorial, I used Linux Mint KDE “Serena”. Choose whichever you prefer. Once it has finished downloading, we will need to prepare our operating system for installation.

  1. You will need to make a bootable CD or USB drive. Doing this is rather easy.
    • Just grab a copy of Rufus from Rufus Website.
    • Insert your 8 GB USB drive or CD/DVD drive into your computer, and make sure it has been read.
    • Run Rufus on your computer and select the disk image you downloaded from Linux Mint Website. It looks something like;

rufus_en

  • Check create bootable disc using and click on the corresponding disc icon to select the .iso file from your computer.
  • Click on start to write the disk image to your USB/CD.

Once it is ready, with your CD/ USB still in your computer, restart your computer and if it does not boot into your USB or DVD, allow it to boot into BIOS by striking esc or on some machines, delete, before it boots into windows.

While in the BIOS, look for a menu choice labeled BootBoot Options, or Boot Order. Set the boot order so that instead of booting from the hard drive first, you boot from either the CD/DVD drive or from a USB drive. Then restart your machine and allow it to boot into Linux Mint.

Next thing, is to install Linux Mint Permanently on the hard drive.

Make sure your computer is plugged in. Booting the operating system from the DVD allows you to test out Linux Mint and see how it works before installation. To install Linux Mint permanently, once Linux Mint is live from USB/CD, you will need to click on the menu icon in the left bottom of your screen and select Install Linux Mint Permanently on your hard drive, or something similar.

The next options are pretty easy, apart from partitioning your hard drive for Linux Mint installation, which we shall go through.

Partition hard drive for Linux Mint Installation

  1. Click on the menu icon in the left bottom of your screen and select Konsole.
  2. Run the following command to install gparted, which will help us to partition the hard drive.
$ sudo apt-get gparted 
$ sudo gparted
  1. On the gparted menu options, click on partition and select new.
  2. The first partition should be for the swap. So in the create new partition window, select linux-swap for the file system and give it a space twice your RAM. e.g. 9192mb in the new size input box, set label name as swap then click add.
  3. Next, we need to create a partition for the root. So repeat step 3 and 4 but this time just select ext4 for file system and label name as rootand leave the rest of the settings.
  4. Close gparted.

In the Partition menu, select Manual instead of Guided, to avoid wiping out windows. Once the partition table appears, click on the root partition to select it, and click change.

  1. Set mount point to “/” and save.
  2. Click install now to proceed with installationThe rest of the setting should be easy, i.e set your country location, then set up a user account and finally click on continue to install Linux Mint on your computer!
  3. Reboot your system and you are good to go.

Author Details


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Omido Carl

A Telecommunication and Information Technology Student at Kenyatta University, Nairobi Kenya.

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