Installing Linux ¶
By: GreenandPleasantLand on May 24, 2021, 5:05 p.m.
There are many reasons why you may want to move away from Windows 10 and start using Linux, from annoying and untimely updates that take an age to download and install, Windows 10 sending your usage information back to Microsoft as well as it becoming increasingly more annoying to use without a local account, with more and more prompts for you to sign in or create a Microsoft account, to name just a few. Installing and using Linux can seem like am intimidating and complicated process however it is actually very easy to do, even without much technical knowledge.
This guide is written to help you to Install Linux Mint Cinnamon on your computer, either as a Dual Boot alongside Windows 10 or as a replacement for it. If you choose to use another Linux distribution (distro), then the steps should for the most part be the same.
1) The first thing that you should do is back up all of your files and even consider making an OS image, that way if anything goes wrong then you can use the OS image to restore your computer.
2) Go to the Linux Mint (https://linuxmint.com/) or other Linux distro website and download the latest version of the Linux distros ISO onto your desktop. Do this by choosing a mirror that is in the UK from the list of mirrors. I downloaded Linux Mint Cinnamon and chose University of Kent UK Mirror Service.
3) Next make sure that you verify the integrity and authenticity of the ISO by comparing the ISO’s checksum with that on the download on the website. This is to make sure that the download hasn’t been tampered with. Here are two links which will help you to do this: https://linuxmint.com/verify.php, https://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=42&t=291093
4) Now you need to use the ISO to create a bootable drive on an empty USB Stick (4GB minimum). You will need to download a piece of software called Etcher (https://www.balena.io/etcher/) to make the bootable drive. This article will show you how to do this: https://linuxmint-installation-guide.readthedocs.io/en/latest/burn.html
5) Once you have created the bootable drive, turn off your computer, plug the bootable drive in and then turn your computer back on. As your computer is turning on, but before it loads up Windows 10, use the appropriate key for your computer to enter the BIOS/UEFI.
6) Change the boot order so that the computer boots from your USB Stick first, this will mean that you will boot into the Linux distro rather than Windows 10 on your hard drive. Note that because it is running from a USB Stick it will be slower than it would be normally when booting from your computer's HDD/SDD.
7) Connect to the internet and then explore your Linux distro. This is your chance to get a feel for it and to see if you like it as well as to see if you are having any problems running it. If you have decided that the distro is the one you want, then it is time to install it on your hard drive.
8) To install Linux onto your computer, start by clicking on the CD icon on the desktop called Install Linux Mint (or equivalent) and follow the options. For Linux Mint, it will ask you to choose your language and then select to install multimedia codecs.
Now you will be given the option to either install Linux alongside Windows 10 (or another Linux distro) as a dual boot, or to completely wipe the hard drive and install Linux in it’s place. If it is your first time using Linux and you are doing it on a computer that you use the most/your only computer, then it might be best to do a dual boot, that way you can always go back to using Windows 10, assuming you haven’t bought the Windows 10 disk.
If you have chosen to do a dual boot, then make sure that Install Linux Mint alongside Windows Boot manager is selected, then allocate disk space between both distros (I did around 50/50). The rest of the install process is self explanatory.
9) Once Linux Mint is installed, restart after removing the USB Drive. You will notice that from now on when you turn the computer on, it will load onto a black and white screen where it gives you a list of options to boot into, to boot into Linux Mint select Linux Mint 20 Cinnamon, to boot into Windows 10 select Windows Boot Manager.