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How to Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10

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Introduction

This is a step by step guide to dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10 on the same computer. Dual boot means to install Ubuntu and Windows 10 then use GRUB (Ubuntu boot manager) to select which Operating System to boot at any time.

What you need for the Dual Boot

  • A computer with Windows 10 installed
  • A USB stick with at least 3GB free space

Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10: High Level Steps

To dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10 follow these steps:

  1. Download Ubuntu

  2. Prepare Windows 10 to dual boot with Ubuntu

  3. Install Ubuntu

This guide assumes that Windows 10 is already installed on the computer you want to dual boot Ubuntu. If you have not installed Windows 10, install it before you proceed.
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Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10: Download Ubuntu

Follow the steps below to download Ubuntu Linux

Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10 - dowload Ubuntu, step 1
  • Next, click on the version you wish to install. For this guide, I am downloading version 19.04.
Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10 - download Ubuntu
  • When the above page loads, click the link to download the desktop image. Save the file on a USB stick.

While the download is going on, proceed to the next step. Depending on your internet speed, download may take up to an hour. When the download completes, save the ISO file to your computer.

Then follow these steps below to prepare Ubuntu to boot from a USB stick (or drive).

Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10  - download Universal USB Installer
  • Save the exe file to your computer
Universal-USB-Installer-1.9.8.8
  • Next, double-click the installer. Then click Yes to the User Acces Control dialogue.
Before you proceed format your USB with FAT32 file system
Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10  - format USB stick
  • On the USB Installer setup click Agree.
  • When the UUI loads, set it up as shown below. On Step 1, click the drop-down and select Ubuntu. Then on step 2, click browse, navigate to the location you saved the downloaded Ubuntu ISO image and click it. Finally, click the drop-down beneath Step 3 and select the USB drive you wish to use. To create the installer, click Create.
  • When you click Create, the window below will pop up. Click Yes. The second image below will pop up. Wait for the USB stick preparation to complete.
  • When the USB prep completes, click Close. Then proceed to the next step.

Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10: Prepare Windows 10

This is a 2-step process

  1. Create a free space on the hard disk to install Ubuntu
  2. Disable Windows 10 secure boot (UEFI Secure Boot)

Create a free space on the hard disk to install Ubuntu

Before you dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10, you need to create a free space in your hard drive. This is where you will install Ubuntu.

Follow the steps below to create a free space on Windows 10.

  • Login to Windows 10. Then right-click the Widows logo and select Disk Management.
How to Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10
  • When Disk Management loads, right-click drive C and select shrink volume. Wait for Disk Management to calculate available free space.
  • When the option to shrink drive c loads, enter the value in the highlighted part of the image below.
How to Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10
You need at least 2GB (2000MB) to install Ubuntu but I recommend you enter 10000 (10GB).
  • When you have entered the value, click Shrink. When the drive Shrink competes you will have a free space. See the highlighted part of the image below.
Note the size of this partition. You will select it during Ubuntu installation. DO NOT format it.

Disable Windows 10 secure boot (UEFI Secure Boot)

Some hardware may not require this step. But it is recommended to enure that Ubuntu will boot.

Warning!
There are risks associated with disabling Windows 10 secure boot. One risk is that your computer may become more prone to boot sector virus attack.

Here are the steps to disable secure boot:

  • From Windows 10, search for Command Prompt, right-click it and select Run as Administrator.
Disable Windows 10 secure boot (UEFI Secure Boot) -
  • When Command Prompt opens, type the command below. Then pres Enter.
shutdown.exe /r /o /f
  • Windows 10 will restart into Advanced boot mode. See the image below.
How to Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10
  • Click Troubleshoot.
  • Then click Advanced Options.
  • Next, click UEFI Firmware Settings.
  • Finally, click Restart. Your computer will boot to UEFI. Locate Secure Boot and disable it.

Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10: Install Ubuntu

Now you are ready to install Ubuntu! This is the last step to dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10.

Follow the steps below to install Ubuntu

  • Still logged on to Windows 10, open command prompt as administrator. Then enter the command below and press enter.
shutdown.exe /r /o /f 
  • Your computer will reboot to advanced Windows 10 mode. See the image below:
  • Next, click Use a device.

Follow the steps to select the USB drive as your installation media. Then proceed with the installation as shown below.

  • When your PC boots into Ubuntu install, select Install Ubuntu. Then click Enter.
Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10: Install Ubuntu step 1
  • Next, select your language. Then click continue.
  • Select your keyboard and click continue.
  • On Updates and Other Software, click continue.
dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10 - install ubuntu - updates and other software
  • On Installation type, select something else. Then click continue.
The first option Install Ubuntu alongside Windows Boot Manager may work. I haven’t tried it. By selecting Something else, you have the option to determine the partition to install Ubuntu.
  • On the Installation type page select the free, unformatted partition. Then click the + sign to add a partition and assign a root Mount point.
Warning!
Ensure you select the space you created when you used Shrink in Disk Management. Selecting the wrong partition will erase your Windows 10 installation.
  • When you click the + sign, the Create partition window will load. Configure it as shown below. Then click Ok.
  • The partition will be created and Mounted to root (/).
  • Select the partition you created above, check the Format? column. Then click Install Now. On the Write changes to disk pop up, click Continue.
  • Next, select your location. Then click Continue. On the next page, complete the details then click Continue.
  • Wait for Ubuntu installation to complete.
dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10
  • When the installation completes, click Restart Now.
dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10

After the reboot, you will have the option to either boot to Ubuntu or Windows 10 (shown below as Windows Boot Manager).

How to Dual Boot Ubuntu and Windows 10
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Conclusion

I hope you have been able to dual boot Ubuntu and Windows 10 with this guide. If you have any question use the “Leave a Reply” form at the end of this page.

You could also share your experience with Ubuntu Windows 10 dual boot.

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