How to Dual Boot Windows 11 and Linux (Ubuntu)

Linux PC

Love Windows 11, but missing the Linux environment? Learn how to install Ubuntu on your Windows 11 device and enjoy a dual boot machine.

Windows is definitely gaining up on the competitors with Windows 11, that being said, Linux (Ubuntu) is still unbeatable in terms of customization as well as in user security.

If you have been wanting to use the amazing GUI of Windows 11 and still have the customization and security of Linux on a single machine, this guide will serve you just well.

Chances are you might be already running Windows 11, or are on your way to upgrade

Installing Ubuntu on a Windows machine is a pretty straightforward process, though it is not difficult by any means. It can feel a bit tedious to some due to the sheer number of steps.

Pre-requisites

  • 8GB or larger USB Drive
  • Minimum 30GB Free Secondary Storage Space

Create a Separate Partition for Linux OS

The very first step you need to do is create a separate partition drive for your Linux OS (Ubuntu, in this case) by shrinking one of the existing volumes on your secondary storage.

To do so, press the Windows+R shortcut on your keyboard to bring up the Run command utility. Then, type diskmgmt.msc and hit Enter to open the ‘Disk Management’ tool on your screen.

Once the window opens, from the bottom section, right-click on the drive you wish to install ‘Ubuntu’ on and select the ‘Shrink volume’ option. This will open an overlay pane on your screen.

Now, from the overlay window, locate the ‘Enter the amount of space to shrink in MB’ and enter a minimum of 30000 in the text box; you can also go higher if your system permits. Then, click on the ‘Shrink’ button to commence the operation.

Once the drive has been shrunk, you will see the ‘Free space’ tile, right-click on it and select the ‘New Simple Volume’ option. This will open a separate overlay window on your screen.

From the ‘New Simple Volume Wizard’ window, click on the ‘Next’ button present at the bottom right corner.

Then, adjust the size for the drive if you wish to do so by entering a number in the text box following the ‘Simple volume size in MB:’ field. Next, click on the ‘Next’ button to continue.

After that, click on the radio button preceding the ‘Assign the following drive letter:’ label. Then, select the drive letter by clicking on the drop-down menu and choosing one from the list. Finally, click on the ‘Next’ button.

At last, click the radio button ‘Format this volume with the following settings:’ label. Then, click on the ‘Next’ button.

The last step is to review all the settings for the new simple volume you wish to create. To commence the process, click on the ‘Finish’ button.

The new drive is ready to be used for installing Linux on your system.

Download Ubuntu and Create a Bootable USB Drive

In order to install Ubuntu on your system, you will need to have an ISO image file of Ubuntu to create an installation media, you can follow the simple steps below to create one. In case you already have a Ubuntu bootable USB, jump to the next section for the installation procedure.

First, head to the official Ubuntu website ubuntu.com/download using your preferred browser. Then, click on the ‘Download’ button present right next to the Ubuntu 20.04.3 LTS (version may change) to download the ISO file.

Once the Ubuntu ISO file is finished downloading, head to the Rufus website rufus.ie. Then, scroll down the webpage till you locate the ‘Downloads’ section. Then, click on the latest version of Rufus to download it on your computer.

Note: Plug in the USB Drive on your computer before proceeding ahead.

Then, head to the directory where the Rufus has been downloaded and double-click on it to launch. Since Rufus is portable software, it will not require any installation on your system.

From the Rufus window, click on the drop-down menu present under the ‘Device’ label to select your inserted drive. If you have only one external drive connected, Rufus will automatically select it.

Next, click on the ‘SELECT’ button present right next to the ‘Boot selection’ to browse the .ISO file of Ubuntu.

Once the file has been loaded, all the other options will be adjusted by Rufus itself. Now, click on the ‘Start’ button to start the creation of the installation of media. This will bring up a prompt on your screen.

Now, click on the ‘OK’ button present on the prompt pane to initiate the process.

Install Ubuntu Using the Bootable USB

Once you have created the Ubuntu bootable USB, it is now time to install the operating system on your machine.

To install Ubuntu, unplug the bootable USB device from the computer if still connected and turn off the PC.

Then, plug the USB back in and turn on the computer. Keep pressing the F2, F10, or F12 (key might vary as per manufacturer) key to access the boot device selection. Once the selection window appears, highlight the bootable USB option using the Arrow keys and hit Enter on your keyboard to boot from it.

Now, from the next screen, select the ‘Install Ubuntu’ option by using the arrow keys and hit Enter to confirm.

Then, Ubuntu will check the drive for errors, wait while the process runs. In case you do not wish to perform the file system check, press Ctrl+C on your keyboard.

Then, on the ‘Welcome’ screen, select a language using the arrows keys or using the mouse. Once selected, click on the ‘Install Ubuntu’ button to proceed.

On the next screen, select your preferred keyboard layout from the list or click on the ‘Detect keyboard layout’ button to let Ubuntu automatically choose your keyboard layout. Once selected, click on the ‘Continue’ button.

Then, on the ‘Wireless’ screen, click on the radio button preceding the ‘I don’t want to connect to a wi-fi network right now’ if you do not wish to connect to a network. Otherwise, double-click on the network you wish to connect to present in the list and authenticate yourself.

After that, from the ‘Updates & other softwares’ screen, click on the radio button preceding the ‘Normal installation’ label. If you wish to download updates while installing click on the checkbox preceding the ‘Download Updates while installing Ubuntu’ option. Then, click on the ‘Continue’ button.

Now, from the ‘Installation type’ screen, click on the radio button preceding the ‘Something else’ option and click on the ‘Continue’ button to proceed with the installation.

Next, select the partition you created earlier in the guide and click on the ‘Change’ button.

Then, click on the drop-down menu following the ‘Use as:’ field and select ‘Ext4journalingfilesystem’ option.

Then, click on the checkbox preceding the ‘Format the partition’ label. After that, click on the drop-down menu following the ‘Mount point:’ and select the ‘/ (forward slash)’ option from the list.

Now, click on the ‘Install now’ button to finally start installing the operating system.

After that, enter your personal details along with credentials in their respective fields and click on the ‘Continue’ button.

Once the installation is completed, you will receive a prompt on your screen asking to restart your computer, click on the ‘Restart Now’ button to proceed.

Now, at the time of boot, select the ‘Ubuntu’ option when prompted to boot up your machine with Ubuntu.


And that’s it, following these simple steps you can have a dual boot machine with Windows 11 and Linux operating system.