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I installed Ubuntu 16.04 LTS on a new Lenovo laptop. I thought it might be a good idea to encrypt the whole hard drive. It wasn't good idea. And also thought it would be easy to undo. I learned that it isn't.

Is it possible to reinstall Ubuntu or some other Linux on the computer and overwrite earlier Ubuntu when it's encrypted?

The idea was just to test if some Linux is possible to install for this laptop while Linux Mint 18 didn't sat on my laptop. Live-USB worked perfectly but installation crashed with GRUB.

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Yes, it's 100% possible.

Just select "Erase disk and install Ubuntu" in the installer. That's it! The installer will automatically format the disk, overwriting the previously encrypted filesystem.

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I generally encrypt the entire HDD no matter what distro I'm using and have run into problems using the installer to overwrite an existing encrypted distro. Sporadic errors in setting up Grub, mostly. I made it a practice to boot into the live desktop, use gParted to delete all existing partitions, then run the installer. Once I deployed that series of events I have erased installation issues.

  • Thanks for the tips. Non of them work because installer won't start. I have live-USB (the same one I used for installation Ubuntu the first time, so it should be fine), BIOS settings is booting primary from USB, secondary HDD and reboot just keep asking password for encrypting and opens ubuntu from HDD. And nothing changes. Just noticed that somehow I can't make any changes either. I can't even change fonts in LibreOffice Writer. Even I do have administrator's rights. There won't come any error dialogs or something. Nothing just happens. – Terhi Välke Apr 23 '17 at 11:37

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