Install linux Mint on external SSD

Questions about Grub, UEFI,the liveCD and the installer
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peterpanos
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Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by peterpanos »

I have a laptop (2013) with Windows 10 on HDD (UEFI).
I don't want to mess with the HDD so I would like to install Linux on an external SSD and keep Windows 10 and all files on internal HDD as it is.
I have a Samsung T5 500Gb external SSD and I have a USB 3.0 on the laptop.
I am searching on the internet but everyone says a different thing. I have no idea if the external SSD should be formatted as FAT32 or NTFS.
This is an image of Disk Management. For some reason my external SSD (disk 1) has two partitions (H: and G:) which I can not merge.
Anyway should I just install Linux Mint on SSD (Disk 1 G:) with Universal USB Installer?
or should I install it with Universal USB Installer on a USB stick and then install it on the external SSD?
Then how do I boot from the external SSD ? It keeps booting Windows 10 from the internal HDD (UEFI)

https://i.imgur.com/va8UYJg.jpg
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Pierre
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Re: Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by Pierre »

YES - you can do that .. Install to an usb hdd :o
but, it's fraught with issues .. boot-up may be affected .. file systems can be affected too.

the LinuxMint boot loader goes where ? on which drive ?
- if on the main drive, inside that Laptop, then it may only boot-up if that usb hdd is still connected.
- if on that usb hdd, then can you manually select that usb hdd via F12 or similar ?

if possible, it would still pay to Install on that internal drive,
& just use that usb hdd as an backup drive.
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peterpanos
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Re: Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by peterpanos »

My internal HDD is getting slow. However I want to keep Windows 10 and all files on the internal HDD as it is.

So I am thinking to run Linux from external SSD (Samsung T5) which should be faster than the internal HDD

But I can not change the boot drive. I can not make it boot Linux from the external SSD. It keeps booting Windows 10 from the internal HDD

rickNS
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Re: Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by rickNS »

peterpanos wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 9:55 am

But I can not change the boot drive. I can not make it boot Linux from the external SSD. It keeps booting Windows 10 from the internal HDD
That sounds exactly like Secure boot, and fast start-up problems.
Make sure secure boot is turned off, and google how to fully shutdown windows 10.
Here's one example. https://www.howtogeek.com/349114/shutti ... g-it-does/

I've no experience with UEFI, and by no means want to argue with Pierre, but I do have a dual boot with win 10 on two separate drives on a BIOS system. (on one machine for just in case, I guess)

So, I would put Mint, and grub on the external SSD , make it (USB HDD) higher in boot order than the internal drive. That way when usb drive is plugged in it will boot first without any F12 intervention, and obviously when it is not plugged in, win 10 on the internal drive will boot.
Mint 19.0 mate on 2 identical Thinkpad T420's

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AZgl1500
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Re: Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by AZgl1500 »

my laptop has two internal drive bays.
the OEM is a 500gB SSD Win10

the 2nd bay was empty, I installed a 128gB SSD ( had 4 of them in a drawer for projects )

as my laptop had the OEM drive set up as RAID, linux live session was not able to see it, so it would not install linux alongside Win10.

when I learned that fact, I opened it up and installed the 2nd SSD and 19.3 Cinnamon went onto that.

The laptop always reboots to whatever OS was used last, if I want to switch from Mint to Win10, I have to use BIOS to select the bootup OS.... As Win10 will only be used on IRS complaint day each year, that is not a problem for me.

Now, IF, there had only been one drive bay available, I would have turned off RAID and secure boot, and let Mint install alongside Win10... then Grub would let me choose which to boot.
Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon

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pbear
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Re: Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by pbear »

peterpanos wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 6:37 am
Anyway should I just install Linux Mint on SSD (Disk 1 G:) with Universal USB Installer?
or should I install it with Universal USB Installer on a USB stick and then install it on the external SSD?
Then how do I boot from the external SSD ? It keeps booting Windows 10 from the internal HDD (UEFI)
Yes, you can install to an external SSD. You would do it by the second method. UUI to burn a flash drive, which you then would use to install to the SSD. I've written a tutorial which explains how to do this. Notice there is a bug in the installer to work around, but it's easily done. For your case, the Unflag/Reflag method probably would be the best fit.

As for your second question, that's a UEFI setting. Pretty much every PC has the ability to boot from USB. You just have to find the setting.
Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.
If your problem has been solved, please edit the thread title.

Kadaitcha Man
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Re: Install linux Mint on external SSD

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

peterpanos wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 9:55 am
But I can not change the boot drive. I can not make it boot Linux from the external SSD. It keeps booting Windows 10 from the internal HDD
Not all laptops are created equally. If your machine is a laptop then you should verify the manufacturer's specifications or read the manual for the machine to determine if it supports booting from devices other than the the built-in SSD.
It's pronounced kad-eye-cha, not kada-itcha.

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