I'd like to sell an old computer of mine to a friend, and I'd like to pre-install Ubuntu. Is it possible to install the OS, but not set up a user account first? I'm expecting that it would ask the user to set up the account (and choose a language, keyboard layout, timezone, etc.) when the computer is booted up for the first time. Basically, the type of prompt you would receive when you first boot up a new Mac or Windows machine.

Is there any way to do this on Ubuntu?


Yes, you can.

  1. Boot your installation disk (I recommend 12.04 LTS, because it will be supported until 2017). Press Shift to get to the boot menu.
  2. Press F4 and select OEM Install.
  3. Install. It will ask for a temporary user name and password.
  4. Boot into the system. Tailor to your heart's content.
  5. Once working, open Prepare for shipping to end user.
  6. Do not boot into the system again.

You may want to clone an image of the drive as a backup (try CloneZilla or RedoBackup).

  • 3 questions: 0. Is it still possible with ubuntu 18.04? 1. What can I do at point 4? 2. At point 5, will the image ship all the drivers? – valeriocomo Feb 28 at 12:04
  • 1
    @valeriocomo Point 4, practically anything. You can reboot as necessary. Point 5, there's nothing to ship; the computer is ready. I haven't tried 18.04, sorry. – Paddy Landau Feb 28 at 16:34

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