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I recently purchased refurbished computers with no operating system. I downloaded Ubuntu to a flash drive but got an error "Invalid system disk, Replace the disk, and then press any key"

Can Ubuntu be installed without a current operating system??

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Yes You can install ubuntu to a computer with no operating system.

I sounds like your hard disk is not properly created. Remember copying ISO to USB doesn't make your USB bootable.

Prepare using command line tool (for any linux distribution)

Use command 'dd' to write iso to your usb drive. This will first erase everything on usb drive so select the drive carefully.

Syntax is sudo dd if='/path/to/iso/image of=/dev/sdX repalce X with the letter of your usb.USe sudo fdisk -l to know whats the name of your usb device. OR use unetbootin.

Then boot into live usb and use gparted to format your internal hdd

If you want GUI way.

If you have access to windows system,

Use any of the following program to create bootable USB

  1. LILI
  2. Unetbootin
  3. Universal USb installer

If you have access to Ubuntu System

  1. Use Startup disk creator in ubuntu.
  2. Unetbootin
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