When creating a boot-able USB or LiveUSB with Startup Disk creator in Ubuntu 12.04, the following error message appears:

Installation Failed
An uncaught exception was raised: Invalid version string 'GNU/LINUX'

What does this mean? Is there a fix for this?

  • Try running the Startup Disk Creator like so: usb-creator --allow-system-internal Be sure to select your USB key from the drive list, and not your system drive. This seems to be a documented bug. – SirCharlo Jul 12 '12 at 13:10
  • If you start a terminal with Ctl-Alt-T what is the output of the lsb_release -a command? – John S Gruber Jul 13 '12 at 5:07
  • It is quite long, it starts with this LSB Version: core-2.0-ia32:core-2.0-noarch:core-3.0-ia32:core-3.0-noarch:core-3.1-ia32:core-3.1-noarch:core-3.2-ia32:core-3.2-noarch:core-4.0-ia32:core-4.0-noarch:cxx-3.0-ia32:cxx- ... and ends with Distributor ID: Ubuntu Description: Ubuntu 11.04 Release: 11.04 Codename: natty – Peachy Jul 13 '12 at 8:00
  • Were you trying to make a Ubuntu starup disk, or another OS (GNU/LINUX)? – Marty Fried May 7 '14 at 16:52

Actually, this is not the documented bug mentioned by @SirCharlo. In fact, it's not really a bug at all. Startup Disk Creator is designed to only make Ubuntu startup disks. If you read the description of the program, it does actually say this, as I found out after the fact.

In my case, I was trying to make a Debian startup disk, and it has an OS Version labled "Debian GNU/Linux...", and therefore the app will not use it to make the disk. Making a Ubuntu disk works perfectly.

It would be nice if it gave a better error message, but the behavior is evidently by design.

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  • I confirm this, I had exactly the same error (trying to create Debian Jessie startup disk). The message is really misleading. – Jan Vlcinsky Apr 26 '15 at 14:47
  • I use tuxboot or UNetbootin now to create USB disks. Worked fine for Debian Jessie, which I tried out today (and which makes me appreciate how easy Ubuntu is!). – Marty Fried Apr 26 '15 at 20:12

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