I am very new to Linux and Ubuntu and I have some questions regarding the right way to go about dual booting. I have a Lenovo ThinkPad E570 with an i5, 250GB SSD (which has Windows 10 pro on it), a 1TB HDD, both encrypted using BitLocker while running Windows 10.

I've started a Computer information systems degree, in which there's a Linux module. I'd like to keep using Windows 10, and dual boot Ubuntu, while keeping all drives (and partitions I end up with) encrypted.

The trouble is I'm not too sure where to start, I've downloaded Ubuntu 16.04.3 (LTS), and created a live USB with it. Questions:

  • Should I stick with 16.04.3 or is it generally better to keep with the latest version (17.04)?
  • Is it recommended that I partition the SSD and dual boot Ubuntu from the partition on it or should I keep it off the SSD (as it's only 250GB) and run it from the HDD?
  • And if I do partition the SSD / HDD what size should I make the partition?
  • If I have a partition on the SSD for the OS should I also have a partition on the HDD for storage? And how do I go about keeping the encryption with all this?
  • If i partition a drive that is encrypted, will this make an unencrypted partition that I'll be able to encrypt within Ubuntu?

As you can tell I'm really confused as to what the best course of action is.

  • Possible duplicate of Installing Ubuntu Alongside a Pre-Installed Windows with UEFI
    – user692175
    Sep 30, 2017 at 19:38
  • 1
    All 4 are a matter of choice and how you expect to use your OS so we can not answer.
    – Rinzwind
    Sep 30, 2017 at 20:32
  • 2
    Thanks but the post you have linked doesn't mention anything about using an encrypted drive or the results of creating partitions on encrypted drives Oct 1, 2017 at 9:40
  • 3
    As a moderator of the community, I would like to apologize for @MichaelBay's tone and attitude. I can assure you that user does not represent the community and I'm really sorry you were subjected to that sort of crap.
    – terdon
    Oct 5, 2017 at 11:17

1 Answer 1


BitLocker is Windows/NTFS only, so you cannot encrypt an Ubuntu installation with it.

If Linux is not your primary OS, and you are new to it, I would recommend taking the easier approach by installing it as a VM with VirtualBox installed in Windows. This enables you to use both Linux and Windows simultaneously, and not worry about encrypting (it's all BitLocker). There is no risk of making your machine unbootable, accidentally deleting data, etc., as well. I highly recommend this if you have never installed Linux before. There are countless tutorials for this if you search.

Another option, which I have not explored myself much, is to use the new Windows Subsystem for Linux.

That said, if a VM is not your cup of tea, and you really want an encrypted Linux install dual-boot, I'd keep it simple. Fortunately you have two drives. I'd recommend leaving your SSD with Windows on it alone. You could even unplug it while installing Ubuntu. Install Ubuntu/GRUB to a partition on your 1TB. You can boot the Live USB, go to install, and choose to just encrypt your entire 1TB like in this image. If you can't lose data on your 1TB and want a partition for the install, you have to do the encrypt stuff yourself following a guide like this one or this one. After the install you could choose which drive to boot to in the BIOS.

I'd recommend staying with the LTS version of Ubuntu, as it is more supported for everything. That's Ubuntu 16.04.3 at the moment.

  • Microsoft has recently released a feature called Quick Create. It provides a much better experience for using an Ubuntu VM. If you're trying Ubuntu, I would recommend that over VirtualBox Apr 26, 2019 at 19:05

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