I am new to Ubuntu. I am trying to install on a Panasonic Toughbook CF-28. It's quite old but runs ok (slow by today's standards), but I just use it to run some navigation software on my boat.

It has a USB port but no CD drive and the BIOS will not let me boot from the USB port. I have tried copying Ubuntu 12.04 to the hard drive, but when attempting to open I get a windows message asking which program I want to open with. I have tried downloading the Windows Installer but it also won't open.

The computer is running Windows XP professional. Any suggestions would be appreciated.


There are many ways you can do this. Please visit Installation without a CD to know what suits your situation.


I was once in the exact same situation.

I solved it by removing the hard disk. Installed it on second PC. Boot Ubuntu on the second PC. Install Ubuntu on the hard disk. Remove the hard disk from the second PC and re-install it on the first one.

Alternatively you might wan't to install it with Wubi, it's not supported with 13.04 and newer but still works with Ubuntu 12.04.


I had a similar problem with an old Toughbook... it had a working version of windows XP installed but a broken CD drive (and it's too old to boot from USB).

I used Wubi - this is a Windows exe that lets you install Ubuntu without leaving your standard Windows environment. You run it from within Windows, it copies a load of Ubuntu files into place and arranges a boot menu so that you can choose at boot-up time whether to load your existing Windows system or your new Ubuntu system (Dual-Booting).

You can download Wubi here.

Go for version 12.04 (the latest Wubi supports) and if you need to you can upgrade from within Ubuntu.

Also, if your system is a bit slow you might want to install Xubuntu instead of Ubuntu (you can choose this as an option in Wubi), as this tends to work better on slower hardware.

Good luck! Linux is good at breathing life into old laptops, you should definitely be able to get something working.


I had the same problem when i tried to install linux on my Toughbook CF-M34. I made my way:

1- I installed ArchLinux from Puppy's GRUB. 2- On Arch I upgraded to GRUB2. 3- With GRUB2 I succeed installing an ISO of Debian 6

Anyway these are small processors and need to run very light environments.

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