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I want to install Ubuntu 11 on my Dell Mini 9. Using ubuntu.com, I created a USB drive. I was successful in running Ubuntu 11 from the USB drive. However, I could not install Ubuntu 11 from the USB drive. There was a screen that had a checklist of three items on it. One of them was having enough free space on my hard disk, which I do not. The hard disk is just too small. The installation process was blocked because of this lack of available space.

However, I understand Ubuntu does not necessarily need all the drive space specified, that smaller installs using less drive space are possible. This sounds promising, because I use a very small subset of Ubuntu, but I am not aware of what other installation options I have.

Is there a way of bypassing this requirement (or going to a custom-install) on the installer? Is there another installation program? If so, could I get it on my USB drive along with Ubuntu 11? Thank you for your help.

UPDATE: I am trying to install Ubuntu 11.10. When I booted with my USB drive, it gives me an Ubuntu desktop with an icon named "Install Ubuntu 11.10". Along the way I get the message "Hard Disk Problems Detected" (which is basically why I want to do this install). The installer asks for 4.4 G and I have 3.8 G. My Mini does not have a CD drive.

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Do you mean Ubuntu 11.04 or or Ubuntu 11.10 by Ubuntu 11? –  Aaron Jan 21 '12 at 22:55
    
How much memory do you have? –  Alvar Jan 21 '12 at 23:01
    
Please clarify: When you say memory in this context, are you talking about your hard drive (disk space) or RAM (memory)? –  Shah Jan 21 '12 at 23:01
    
He means disc space ;) @alex how much hard disc space do you have? There are other options. Ubuntu comes with a minimal install cd where you can build applications on (like a desktop manager). –  Rinzwind Jan 21 '12 at 23:06
    
I am trying to install Ubuntu 11.10. When I booted with my USB drive, it gives me an Ubuntu desktop with an icon named "Install Ubuntu 11.10". Along the way I get the message "Hard Disk Problems Detected" (which is basically why I want to do this install). The installer asks for 4.4 G and I have 3.8 G. My Mini does not have a CD drive. –  Alex Jan 21 '12 at 23:24
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2 Answers

Alex, there is an Ubuntu wiki page on this system and about the 4Gb disc. From the link...

DellMini9

As this Laptop was originally sold with Ubuntu 8.04, Justification exists to keep this page.

Unsupported Version: This article applies to an unsupported version of Ubuntu.

Status

For installation, as of Ubuntu 11.10, (and possibly earlier) the Desktop ISO put onto liveUSB fails to load, This may have something to do with the unusual half-mini pci express ssd not being detected properly.

As some of these shipped with 4gb halfminipcie ssd storage, one may need to use the alternate-cd image for installation, as the desktop version will say there is not enough disk space, but there really is(was)

Also, everything after the 8.04 that came with your mini, you will need a wired connection to the internet to get the broadcom wifi working, as this is not included on the LiveCD.

The Ubuntu 10.04 LTS version was the last version that had innovative screen space saving features.

10.10 on have unity by default. It is possible to run Kubuntu, but one must not simply uninstall plasma-netbook, one must know some shell fu(with the livecd) to get to system settings and switch the workspace-behavior--workspace--type to desktop to be able to do anything with the livecd.

Also see: Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex (8.10) on the Dell Mini 9

...

CD Install or DVD recovery

The device doesn't come with a CD/DVD drive, so you will need to attach a USB one to the unit, and place your Ubuntu install CD in the drive. To boot from the CD ROM, press 0 during the initial boot screen (where it shows the Inspiron Logo) and choose the CD ROM drive from the drop-down menu.

So the best method would be to ...

  1. purchase an USB dvd;
  2. use the alternate installer.
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In order of decreasing connection with your question:

  1. The alternate install CD image may allow you to perform the installation successfully.
  2. Ubuntu 10.04 is certainly installable on the Mini 9 (I have installed it on one - it was as an upgrade to 9.10, but I would expect a fresh installation to work equally well). You may want to use that version, and perhaps attempt an update to 12.04 when it comes out in April.
  3. You can find 16, 32 and 64GiB replacements for the SSD in your Mini 9, in case you had not considered the option.
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