I have 2 computers in this messy process I'm trying to do.

Computer 1: Older, BIOS based. Has Rufus installed. Running Windows 7. This is the laptop that I will use to create the Ubuntu Live-USB drive and needs UEFI

Computer 2: Newer UEFI based. Currently dual boot Ubuntu 16.04 and Windows 10. This is the laptop that I will want to boot using a USB with Ubuntu 16.04 in UEFI

My question is: What are the proper settings when using Rufus to create the USB drive so that GRUB is installed to the USB only and doesn't impact Computer 1 at all?

I've had nothing but trouble getting a Live-USB to boot on the new computer. Once I do that, I will be using the live-USB to create full Ubuntu installs on other USB drives.

  • A 64-bit version of Ubuntu can be installed with Rufus such that it will work in UEFI mode. And that version will boot via grub. An alternative is to use a cloning tool, that can create a live USB drive, that can boot both in BIOS mode (via syslinux) and in UEFI mode (via grub). mkusb in linux and Win32 Disk Imager in Windows are cloning tools. See help.ubuntu.com/community/mkusb and wiki.ubuntu.com/Win32DiskImager/iso2usb – sudodus Apr 1 '17 at 14:08
  • You can also just make an UEFI only bootable flash drive. UEFI only USB key, just extract ISO ( 7 zip or similar) to FAT32 formated flash & set boot flag. askubuntu.com/questions/395879/… With new computers you may need boot parameters, but that depends on brand/model and video card/chip. – oldfred Apr 1 '17 at 14:25
  • Oh, good grief! My question isn't even right. I got the UEFI Live-USB working (thanks Oldfred). That isn't my issue. I now want to install Ubuntu using the Live USB on the UEFI laptop to a second USB. Here's where the trouble always starts. I want grub installed on the new USB without making any changes to the HDD Grub but everything I've tried (including installing grub on the USB during the installation process) either breaks the HDD grub (have to use bootrepair) or it simply doesn't work. Someone suggested removing the HDD but come on, do I really have to do that? – user3210171 Apr 1 '17 at 16:16
  • Removing the internal drive makes it both simpler and safer. Particularly if you boot in UEFI mode, it makes a big difference. – sudodus Apr 1 '17 at 20:06

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