Installing Ubuntu 13.10

A step-by-step installation tutorial with numerous screenshots

The following tutorial will teach you how to install the Ubuntu 13.10 (Saucy Salamander) operating system on your personal computer, netbook, or laptop.

Also known as the Saucy Salamander, Ubuntu 13.10 arrived on October 17, 2013 and is the 19th release of Ubuntu, the world's most popular free operating system.

The following tutorial was created in order to teach Linux newcomers and existing Ubuntu users alike how to install the Ubuntu 13.10 operating system on their personal computer or laptop, even if the Ubuntu installer is pretty self-explanatory.


You will need the Ubuntu 13.10 DVD ISO image that corresponds to your hardware architecture (i386 or amd64), and that can be downloaded from here.

When the ISO image is downloaded, burn it with your favorite DVD burning application (Nero, CDBurnerXP, etc.) on a blank DVD at 4x speed. Or you can write it to a USB stick using our tutorial about how to run a Linux distribution from a USB flash drive.

Reinsert or leave the USB flash drive in the USB port or the DVD disk in your DVD-ROM device, and reboot the computer in order to boot from it. Hit the F8, F11, or F12 key (depending on your BIOS) to select the DVD-ROM or the USB flash drive as the boot device.

Wait for the USB/DVD to load...

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In a couple of minutes, the Live CD will load and you will see the Ubuntu desktop. Double click the "Install Ubuntu 13.10" icon from the desktop to install Ubuntu...

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  Welcome & Preparing to install Ubuntu

The installation wizard will appear, so select your language and click the "Continue" button. In the next screen, make sure you meet all the listed requirements.

Optionally, you can choose to download updates while installing and/or install third-party software, such as MP3 support. Be aware, though, that if you select those options, the entire installation process will be longer!

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Installation type

On this screen you have various options:

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1. Replace an existing operating system with Ubuntu

- Choose this option ONLY if you have a previous operating system and you want to replace it with Ubuntu.

2. Encrypt the new Ubuntu installation for security (optional)

- Choose this option to fully encrypt your entire Ubuntu installation with a strong passphrase that you will have to input in the next step of the installation.

- If you pick this option, we also recommend choosing the “Overwrite empty disk space” option in the second step, for stronger security.

3. Use LVM with the new Ubuntu installation (optional)

- Choose this option to set up Logical Volume Management, which will allow you to take snapshots and easily resize partitions.

4. Something else (advanced)

- This option is recommended ONLY for advanced users, to create special partitions or format the hard drive with filesystems other than the default one. But it can also be used to create a /home partition, which is very useful in case you reinstall the whole system.

Here's how you do a manual partitioning with /home:

- Select the "Specify partitions manually (advanced)" and click the "Forward" button;

- Make sure that the selected hard drive is the right one. /dev/sda is the first physical hard drive. /dev/sdb is the second hard drive in your machine. So, make sure that you know which is the one you want to format! Otherwise, you will lose ALL YOUR DATA on that hard drive;

- Let's say that the selected drive is empty (no other operating system or important data on it), but it has some partitions on it. Select each of those partitions and click the "Delete" button. After a few seconds, you will see the message "free space." Do this with the other partitions from the selected hard drive, until they're all deleted and you have a single "free space" entry;

- With the "free space" entry selected, click on the "+" button. In the new window, type 2048 in the "New partition size in megabytes" field and select the "swap area" option from the "Use as:" drop-down list. Click the OK button and, in a few seconds, you'll notice a "swap" line with the specified size;

- With the "free space" line selected, click on the "+" button. In the new window, select the "Primary" option, type a value between 30,000 and 50,000 (or whatever space you have left on the drive) in the "New partition size in megabytes" field and select /home as the "Mount point." Click the OK button and, in a few seconds, you'll notice an "ext4 /home" line with the specified size;

- With the "free space" entry selected, click on the "+" button. In the new window, select the "Primary" option, type a value between 10,000 and 50,000 in the "New partition size in megabytes" field and select / as the "Mount point." Click the OK button and, in a few seconds, you'll notice an "ext4 /" line with the specified size.

This is what your partition table should look like...

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WARNING: Be warned that all the data on the selected hard drive or partition will be ERASED and IRRECOVERABLE.

EXTREMELY IMPORTANT: Don't forget to choose where GRUB will be installed, from the "Device for boot loader installation" drop-down box, before you hit the "Install Now" button.

Click the "Continue" button to start the installation process.

Editor's note: At this point the hard drive will be erased and partitioned, the DVD/USB data will be copied to the hard drive, and you can relax and continue to input the following required information.

  Where are you?

This screen will feature a map of the Earth. Upon the selection of your current location, the time for the final system will adjust accordingly. You can try to guess your location with the mouse on the map, or just type the town in the designated field. Click the "Continue" button after you have selected your desired location...

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  Keyboard layout

On this screen, you will be able to choose a desired keyboard layout. But the default automatic selection should work for most of you. You can also click the "Figure Out Keyboard Layout" button for better recognition of your keyboard's layout. Click the "Continue" button when you have finished with the keyboard configuration...

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Who are you?

On this screen, you must do exactly what the title says. Fill in the fields with your real name, the name of the computer (automatically generated, but can be overwritten), the name you want to use to log in on your Ubuntu OS (also known as the "username," which will be required to log in to the system), and the password.

Also in this step, there's an option called "Log in automatically." If you check it, you will be automatically logged in to the Ubuntu desktop.

Another option, called "Encrypt my home folder," will encrypt your Ubuntu installation. Click the "Continue" button to proceed...

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 One Account Setup

On this screen, you will be able to set up a new Ubuntu One account or log in into your existing Ubuntu One account, in order to keep all your files in the cloud.

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 The Installation

At this point, the Ubuntu 13.10 (Saucy Salamander) operating system will be installed...

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After approximately 10 to 15 minutes (depending on your computer's specs), a pop-up window will appear, notifying you that the installation is complete, and you'll need to restart the computer in order to use the newly installed Ubuntu operating system. Click the "Restart Now" button...

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The DVD will be ejected, or just remove the USB key and press the "Enter" key to reboot. The computer will be restarted and, in a few seconds, you will see the Ubuntu boot splash...

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At the login screen, just input your password and hit Enter to log in...

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That's it! Have fun using Ubuntu 13.10.

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