I wouldnt look at the Ubuntu forum solution, as I said in my previous post it's complicated and there are simpler solutions : the one by pbear, with a full thread explaining it, or mine.
It's true that live USB with persistence appears at first like the thing you want. But I understand that for Mint, this broke somewhere around LM17.2 or 17.3. At the time there were posts trying to get this back to work, but that was at best difficult. Nowadays, I think it's not worth going for persistence, because USB are large enough to carry a full system (except for the point that you have more read/write operations to the drive, compared to the live case where the system is in RAM, but I'm no expert on this). Also with persistence, you cannot update kernel nor core programs in general, which can be a security issue. By default with persistence you also cannot install programs, just keep files (I hear there are ways to circumvent that, but I dont know how). In summary, if your USB is large enough to carry a system (32GB is more than enough, probably doable already on 16GB) I advise a full install instead of live+persistence.
For full install, have a look at pbear's method and choose which one you prefer.
For reference, I explain in larger details my method below, it's basically what you said.
1 ) Partition the target USB with gparted.
200MB is the typical/default size of an EFI System Partition (ESP), but indeed you can go smaller if you feel so. For instance my ESP weighs 6MB (and contains both grub refind and an EFI shell. grub alone is 3.5MB, refind alone is 1.5MB).
Do not define any mount point for the partitions at this moment.
2 ) Boot the live USB indeed. Open a terminal and issue
this will launch the installer, looking exactly as the one you would get by double-clicking the icon on the desktop, the only difference is that the installer will not install a bootloader, everything else will be as you are used to.
3 ) Use the "something else" option to manually specify the location of the install. In fact you could do all the partition setup of step 1) at this point with the installer instead of gparted. Personally I prefer to use gparted for partition setup, because the interface is clearer, you separate the tasks and can more easily check what you did etc.
It seems you are familiar with installs, so I dont need to detail this step
4 ) Installing the bootloader.
You dont need to get back to your usual OS, you can do when still booted on the live USB (saves a few minutes)
For refind, you go to the download page
, chosse binary zip file, download the zip somewhere and uncompress it, then open a terminal and change to the decompressed directory, e.g.
where you will have the following content
Code: Select all
banners docs LICENSE.txt mvrefind refind
COPYING.txt fonts mkrlconf NEWS.txt refind-install
CREDITS.txt keys mountesp README.txt refind-mkdefault
then indeed you issue the command
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./refind-install --alldrivers --usedefault /dev/sdXY
5 ) Shutdown, unplug the live USB, boot and get to the boot menu of your computer (tapping a machine-specific key, usually Esc or F8) and select the USB. You should get to refind which will provide different entries, one for each of the OS installed on your hard drive, and one for the OS installed on the USB drive.