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I have a laptop without an internal hard drive and I'm struggling to make it work from a USB drive.

I have used Universal-USB-Installer- to install Ubuntu onto my USB drive. I specified a 250 MB persistent file. The system boots and it all works fine, but I can't really save any changes or even access the USB drive, can't create folders or copy files to it, and can't connect to the Internet. When I try to access the Internet, and enter the password of the access point, it tries to connect and than says "network disconnected" and asks for the password again. I know the password I am inputting is correct. (It also fails to save the password.) If i restart it, all my changes like the desktop wallpaper and the wifi configuration are gone.

I figured I need to use the install shortcut and install it permanently onto the usb drive, but when i try to do that, I choose my language and get stuck at the second screen with check boxes and stuff. On this screen, the continue button doesn't work--I can't press it.

I figured it doesn't want to install onto the same drive so I tried to install it from one USB drive to another. I still couldn't get past the second screen for the same reason. I tried to use all the disk management utilities and format the second drive but nothing i did had any effect.

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How did you format your USB drive? – Mitch Jun 21 '12 at 16:16

I believe you are looking for a page like this:

This lists several methods to create a persistent USB drive that saves your customizations, like your desktop wallpaper and Wi-Fi configurations. I would burn an Ubuntu Live CD and select your USB drive as the target disk to accomplish something like this. Also, don't forget to make the drive bootable and install a bootloader. Instructions are listed in the article for this.

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oh i tried burning the ubuntu iso onto a cd but it gave me errors booting from the CD – user72316 Jun 21 '12 at 17:22
@user72316 how did you burn the CD? – Ethan Lee Jun 21 '12 at 21:29
i opened the ubuntu-12.04-desktop-i386.iso with imgburn and hit burn – user72316 Jun 22 '12 at 23:28

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