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I recently got a Dell ultrabook and was trying to install Ubuntu on it.

I was able to successfully download the .iso file onto my USB drive using Universal-USB-installer, and was then able to load the Ubuntu installer.

However, when I chose the option to "install Windows 7 and Ubuntu side-by-side", the computer restarted and then opened up Windows instead of continuing to install Ubuntu.

Then, I tried to change the order in which my computer chooses to boot...booting from the hard drive was ahead of booting from a USB drive, so I switched that. Then I tried to install Ubuntu again, and the the same thing happened...I chose "install Windows 7 and Ubuntu side-by-side" and the computer restarted, and instead of continuing to install Ubuntu, I got prompted to begin the Ubuntu installation process (or to "try" Ubuntu).

Any suggestions???

Also, I tried to the "Windows installer" by downloading wubi.exe that was supposed to be quick and easy...but then I was only allowed to choose a 30 GB installation size (the partition that Windows is on has currently 92.95 GB with 65.21 GB in Free Space, according to Windows' Computer Management). I'd like more than 30 GB on Ubuntu, and I don't see why it's not allowing me to choose more than 30GB...

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Do you have an encrypted partition on your drive. If so, that might be the reason Ubuntu did not allow you more than 30 GB.In wubi,there is an option to make the pc to boot from cd/usb by auto.It creates a grub menu with two options to start either windows or ubuntu. – beeju May 7 '12 at 0:35
I do not know if I have an encrypted you know how I can check and possibly change this? – db1234 May 7 '12 at 0:36
I think the Ubuntu live ISO has gparted installed.From your post it is known that you could run the live media.On loading do select "try ubuntu", then run gparted from menu.It will display your entire hard disk and see how much space available free.If there is an encrypted partition,it never recognize that part. – beeju May 7 '12 at 0:42
It's not encrypted. I was also able to see it on Windows' Disk Management (this is how I know that it was 90+ GB in size and had 65+GB in free space) – db1234 May 7 '12 at 1:15

Possible reason:

  • When you choose to use the option "install Windows 7 and Ubuntu side-by-side", what ubuntu does is , it will shrink the current windows partition. Create a new partition and install ubuntu on to that. Now Shrinking is the problem because windows system files may be fragmented over many areas in the partition. That's why it can't give you more space than 30GB.

  • Why GRUB is not being installed? : From windows disk management, check whether the disk is marked as dynamic disk or basic disk. GRUB can't be installed in dynamic disk.

Post a picture of windows disk management console window if you need more help.


  • Create partition manually and install ubuntu.

    Open disk management in windows, right click on C: and choose to shrink. If it can't shrink to the size you wanted, You have to repartition your disk and have to reinstall windows and then install ubuntu with desired size.

I will update my answer, please post an image before and after shrink.

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After you have installed Ubuntu and the computer is rebooting, you have to remove the USB because the computer will still boot the USB before the harddriver, as you specified in the BIOS settings.

Manual partitioning

Consider that this list is long because it guides you closely and was intended to be very comprehensive.

I think this list of steps should fix your problem, but only run it if you can re-install Windows (in case anything goes wrong or you care about having it):

  1. Backup the data on Windows' you care about, i.e. user files, applications, etc.
  2. Defragment your hard-disk. This can be done from Windows.
    Contrary to intuition, files don't stack up in order in a hard-disk. They can be represented by spread out papers in a box. When you create a new partition you are chopping this box into two pieces: the first being your Windows partition and the second your Linux partition. If your Windows files are stacked up in the Windows piece of the box, you will lose no data the moment you divide your disk; otherwise you will. To stack the Windows files as required - at the beginning of the partition - you defragment the disk.
  3. Boot from the USB and "Try" Ubuntu.
  4. Partition your system with gparted.
    There are plenty of guides on the subject already which are easily findable. The idea here is that after defragmenting your disk you will be able to shrink your windows partition manually to a desired size, and use all the rest for Ubuntu.
  5. Install Ubuntu and when prompted to select the installation type, select manual; there you will use the partitions you made on step 3.
    Make sure that in step 3 you create a primary partition for GRUB, and that in this step you will let Ubuntu install GRUB in such partition.

By installing Ubuntu this way, you are assured that Ubuntu has available as much space as there is available.

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if you want dual-boot, you have to create a new partition. if you want to install "inside" Windows, use the wubi.exe.

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