Linux Mint 12: Making a Bootable USB Stick

Linux MintWith the release of Linux Mint 12 “Lisa” on November 26th, the distribution gets a lot of attention these days. If you’re like me, you probably like to try “new” distributions from time to time. This is why I felt like giving a try to Mint this week.

Creating the bootable device

  1. Download a Linux Mint image from here
  2. If you’re under Ubuntu, use Startup Disk Creator (installed by default)
  3. If you’re under Windows,  use Univeral USB Installer, free and available here
  4. The rest is pretty straightforward…

Fixing a common problem

Once your USB device is “ready”,  you will get the following error if you try booting from it:

vesamenu.c32: not a COM32R image

After some short research I found the following fix, which is very simple to apply, and completely solves the problem:

  1. Browse the USB device to the syslinux folder
  2. Open and edit the syslinux.cfg file
  3. The first line should read: default vesamenu.c32
  4. Change it to: default live
  5. Save and close the file

That’s it! You’re now ready to try/install Linux Mint 12 “Lisa”.


  1. The pcbsd DVD iso is only 3.34 gb
    The pcbsd usb iso is 3.75
    The room on the USB stick (new) is 3.73 max
    So went to my copy of Linux Ment Torrent no codexc Iso
    Used unetbootin to burn to USB
    would not boot and Samsung netbook bios has not options for a USB boot
    so installed LM12 inside Winxp sp3
    long log with errors base on no “iso-path” the install took 20 minutes to fail. Seem to be boxed-in (also note have been seeding LM and pcbsd torrents for a long time and will continue to do so

  2. Was able to update bios from 03ba to 06ba from a third party site.
    Found how to change the boot order in bios, it was there but hidden.
    USB did boot, but there was a general boot failure, So will start over burning the flashdrive. Also saw a tutorial, stating that not all usb flashdrives will work, some of the cheapest seem to work best, they were clueless as to why.
    Also discovered that there are inexpensive “USB to SATA/IDE adapter cable kits that allow hot swaping hard drive, Sata, ide and 2-1/3 form factor (laptop HDD) (from $10 to $30 per kit) warned to make sure there are indictor led and that the Hdd power cable has a switch. (power up the HDD to spin before connecting to USB.) (2-1/2 type power from USB without separet power cable.)Hot swap, but still hit the icon for safe removal, don’t corrupt files.)
    This is not for daily use, the connectors are all vulnerable, use to install image, or for backup, can use those old drive that are pre-usb, (any devise with those connectors), xp and later already has all the drivers installed. Some kits have cd for win98.

  3. I sometimes managed to boot from usb with the help of: plop boot manager.
    You can put it on floppy or cd.

  4. Works great.
    With an ubuntu-stick it sometimes worked for me to type “help” after `2 boot:`

  5. Works for me.

    Thank you very much!!

  6. Works wonderfully. I wonder why it’s still such a pain to get flash drives to boot …

    • No shit! I wonder also!
      I’ve tried to make a bootable usb iso using unetbootin, universal usb, Linux Live USB creator. Have a POS gateway w a busted CD drive.
      I thought, perhaps it’s b/c I”m creating the bootable USB stick from OS X?
      But I tried it for the 3rd shot on the XP box.
      no luck.
      it’s a ball breaker, I”m sure I’ll get it eventually. but damn. This is why I declared never to use Windows again in 2007. it loves to not work!

  7. Thanks for that. 🙂

  8. How do you do this when its a read only file system? Not even sudo chmod +w will change that.

    • Matt

      March 1, 2012 at 1:32 pm

      Try remounting the filesystem with read and write options:

      mount -o remount,rw [path to the filesystem]

      Or unmount it and remount it manually with write option.

  9. thanks for that , i like it

  10. what if I’m under osx SN ?

  11. Hi when i am booting with Stick i got this error

    No Default or UI configuration directice found!

  12. You the man. Thanks
    mi$$ion accomplish

  13. Works with Ubuntu 10.10 for Linux Mint 13 Maya Mate 32-bit iso. Thanks…

  14. But what if you’re not using either Windows or Ubuntu?

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