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Is it possible to move my installed copy of Ubuntu 11.10 from my laptop's internal hard drive to a bootable flash drive?

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You can use Clonezilla to attempt this. If your / partition (or, less likely, other partitions) of your Ubuntu system are sized larger than the flash drive (but their data doesn't itself take up too much space), then you'll have to shrink them first. You can do that in the GParted Partition Editor, which you should run from a live CD.

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