Software & Apps Linux 66 66 people found this article helpful How to Create a Linux Bootable USB Drive Using Linux Easily create your own live Linux USBs By Gary Newell Writer Gary Newell was a freelance contributor, application developer, and software tester with 20+ years in IT, working on Linux, UNIX, and Windows. our editorial process Gary Newell Updated March 24, 2020 Linux Switching from Windows Tweet Share Email One way to create a Linux USB drive is to use Windows. However, if you replaced Windows with a version of Linux and you want to try a different distribution, use Etcher. Etcher is a simple graphical tool that creates Linux bootable USB drives within Linux. It works well on older machines with a standard BIOS and newer machines requiring an EFI bootloader. Choose a Linux Distribution Choosing the perfect Linux distribution isn't easy, but we have a guide that will help you choose a distribution. This guide also has download links for the ISO images required to create a bootable USB drive. Download and Extract Etcher Etcher is a graphical tool that is easy to install and use on any Linux distribution. To start, visit the Etcher website and click the Download for Linux link. Open a terminal window and navigate to the folder where Etcher was downloaded to. For example: cd ~/Downloads Run the ls command to make sure the file exists: ls You should see a file with a name similar to the following: Etcher-1.0.0-beta.17-linux-x64.zip To extract the files, use the unzip command: unzip Etcher-1.0.0-beta.17-linux-x64.zip Run the ls command again: ls You will now see a file with a similar filename: Etcher-linux-x64.AppImage To run the program, enter the following command, replacing your actual filename: ./Etcher-linux-x64.AppImage A message appears and prompts you to create an icon on the desktop. Choose Yes or No, depending on your preferences. Create the Linux Bootable USB Drive When you create a Linux bootable USB drive, use a blank drive as all the data will be deleted. Insert a USB drive into the computer. Click Select Image, then navigate to the Linux ISO file you downloaded previously. Etcher automatically chooses a USB drive to write to. If more than one drive is installed, click the change link below the drive and choose the correct one instead. Select Flash. Enter your password to give Etcher permission to write to the USB drive. The image is written to the USB drive, and a progress bar shows how far through the process it is. After the initial flash part, it moves to a verification process. Do not remove the drive until the full process is complete, and it says it is safe to remove the drive. Test the USB Drive Reboot your computer with the USB drive plugged in. Your computer should now provide a menu for the new Linux system. If your computer boots to the Linux distribution you currently use, then you may wish to choose the Enter setup option that most distributions provide in the GRUB menu. This takes you to the BIOS/UEFI boot settings. Look for the boot options and boot from the USB drive.