Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Screenshot Tour: Installing Ubuntu 9.04 on the Dell Mini 9

I installed UNR USB 9.04 Beta Image for this guide. Installing Ubuntu 9.04 Beta i386 works exactly the same. You can read my overview of of Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope Beta here.

Installing Ubuntu 9.04
install welcome

Language Selection
install language selection

Selecting Keyboard Layout
install keyboard layout

Starting the Partitioner
install - setting up partioner

install - prepare disk space
- I chose to manually specify partitions and setup Ubuntu with a separate / and /home partition.

Preparing Partitions
install -parition editor
- I had previously installed Ubuntu 8.10 on my Mini 9.

Creating a / Partition
install creating /
- I chose to give my /root partition 5GB for my Ubuntu system files and programs. I also chose to format this partition in Ext4. It is a journaling system and will write to my solid state drive more often. If you want to limit writes to your solid state drive, use Ext2.

Creating a /home Partition
install creating /home
- I also chose to reformat my my /home partiton in Ext4 to take advantages of Ext4 speed. If you want to continue using your pre-existing file system you can mark this partition as /home and simply choose not to reformat it. This will also save all your personal files and configurations.

Swap Error
install - swap eror
- I chose to not install a swap partiton to limit hard drive usage. If you chose to not install swap partition simply ignore this message.

Partitioning Drives Complete
install partition editor finish

User Setup
install - user setup
- Here you can chose to log into Ubuntu automatically or require a password to log in. I chose to login.

Migration Assistant
Migrate docs & settings
- The migration assistant offered to carry over my files from my previous Ubuntu 8.10 install.

Installation Check
install - final check
- Last check to make sure everything is correct before installing Ubuntu.

Partitions Formatting
Installing system

Installing Language Packs
Installing language packs

Installation Complete
Installation Complete

Have a question or problem that this article doesn't cover?
Ask our Ubuntu Mini 9 Google Group for help.


Hari said...

I came here looking for recommendation on how to partition, so thanks for sharing your setup. I wasn't sure what filesystem to choose and didn't find any firm recommendations. E.g., the below blog


gave some good measurements of journaling and newer filesystem overheads compared to ext2, and the author concluded that the overhead is not significant enough, but after reading some of the comments, I wasn't comfortable to use ext3/ext4, so went with ext2.

BensonBear said...

I am planning to get a mini with 16G SSD and install the newest unbuntu on it. Space is tight, but I still wonder: might it not be a good idea to create a partition that could potentially be used as a swap partition anyway?

I plan to do this (1 or 2G) and try the system with and without swap. If it performs better without swap, then I can reformat the partition to use for other purposes. The only real drawback here is a slight awkwardness due to fragmentation, but without this partition, it is hard to test with and without swap?

Does that make sense?

Why did you choose not to use swap? Was it for concern of wearing out the SSD? I think this is probably not an issue. Was it because the performance of the machine degrades with the slower writing to swap than is typical with a regular HDD? I suspect this could be a problem.

redDEAD said...

Swap is kinda pointless for me on the Mini 9. I didnt notice a performance decrease and wanted the extra 1GB of space.

If you want a swap partition go for it. SSD are cheap.

BensonBear said...

("Unbuntu"! Hopefully not a Freudian slip (I have only ever used Fedora (or RH before that)))

Guess it doesn't matter but you didn't answer my question really. You had written "I chose to not install a swap partition to limit hard drive usage".

So my question was: was this because of slow writes, or because of fear of SSD wearing out? Or maybe both?

redDEAD said...

I told you my reason.

I wanted the 1GB of extra space and I didn't notice a performance decrease without swap. So I didn't install a swap partition.

I could care less about wear and tear, as I stated SSD are cheap. if I burn my out I buy a new one.


Another reason (and the one I used in the article) is that I want to limit hard drive read/writes. But it's not my main reason.

Don R Maxwell said...

Install went great. The Mini9 hung during the updates when a new linux img was being gen'ed. Reboots fail due to X issues. Planning my next steps now, deciding whether to troubleshoot or reinstall.

Don R Maxwell said...

Back in now after hosed updates. Booted into grub then chose 'recovery mode' then dpkg and xfix. All is well again.


Brad said...

Is it possible/OK to do a clean install from USB of Jaunty UNR on my Mini9 without installing Intrepid?
Been searching for a clear answer but I'm having trouble parsing it out of the myriad of info out there.

I am running the Dell Hardy distro right now.


redDEAD said...


You can install whatever version of Ubuntu you want. One does not need to proceed the other.

Asim said...

I have a Dell Inspiron Mini 1012 with Windows 7. Even with 88 GB of unallocated space and 25 GB free space on the Windows C drive, the Ubuntu netbook installer 10.10 is getting hung after pressing Forward on the Preparing to install Ubuntu-Netbook screen. I do not want to delete my windows partition and OS. How do I troubleshoot this?

redDEAD said...


I can't help you, this article is about Ubuntu 9.04 not 10.10