How To: Make A Linux Install USB

Today’s article is going to be a rather basic article, with worthwhile information, about how to make a Linux install USB. This won’t be too complicated, even if it looks complicated initially. It probably won’t even be a very long article.

If you want to install Linux, you will need some sort of install medium. That can be almost any sort of drive, including some distros that are still small enough to fit on a CD. Heck, if you can get your computer to boot to it, you could even use a MicroSD as your installation media.

We’ll be doing this in the terminal. Why? Well, because it’s not that hard and it’s a fairly universal process. You won’t even need to install anything new! But, if you don’t have any interest in doing this in the terminal (or if you’re not using Linux right now) you can always do this with a GUI. See the following article for more details:

balenaEtcher: A Tool To Turn Linux .ISO Files Into Bootable USB Drives

There’s also Rufus, should you be using a Windows computer. You have options outside of the terminal. Though, I haven’t done an article on using Rufus. I don’t have any Windows devices. (If you want to write said article, feel free to let me know. I love guest articles.)

What You Need:

These are the tools you’ll want to have available. It’s not a long list, so we won’t have too much to deal with.

  1. A blank USB drive, large enough to hold the data.
  2. Any distro with lsblk.
  3. The ability to unmount a disk.
  4. A distro with the dd command.

So, I’ll assume you have the first aspect covered. Everything else is software. They’re standard tools that are available on all but the tiniest of distros.

The first tool is lsblk, which the man page describes as:

lsblk – list block devices

Then you’ll need the obverse of mount, which is unmount. This is a part of the mount command. It doesn’t have a command of its own. That mount command is described as:

mount – mount a filesystem

And, finally, you’ll need the dd command. That’s simply described as:

dd – convert and copy a file

And that’ll be all you need. Well, you’ll need an open terminal, of course! So, let’s cover one way that you can…

Make A Linux Install USB:

Like I said, you’re going to need a USB drive. This drive must be big enough to hold the data. You’ll need to insert the drive and then open the terminal. To open the terminal, just press CTRL + ALT + T or open it from your application menu.

With your USB inserted, you need to identify where it is mounted. You can do that by running the following command:

You should be able to easily identify the USB drive by the size of the drive. The data you want will begin with “sd”, often something like “sdb” or “sdc” (enumerating as you increase mounted storage devices).

Take that information and run the following command:

The next command might look complicated, but just follow the directions and you shouldn’t have any trouble as you make a Linux install USB. The command looks like this:

For example, if the disk identifier was “sdc” and the path to the .iso was something like “~/Downloads/Lubuntu_22.04.iso” the command would look like this:

Then, just wait a few minutes. Let the dd command do its thing and you’ll end up with a bootable USB drive that will let you install Linux. (This also works for other image files, of course.)


See? It’s not that complicated to make a Linux install USB. So long as you pay attention, you won’t have much to worry about. There are a few commands that you need to worry about, but those are basic commands in this instance.

I will warn you to be absolutely certain of the path for the dd command because it has the potential to make you have a really bad day. But, if you don’t want to deal with installing a GUI application, or you are in a position where you can’t install a GUI application, this is a way for you to make a Linux USB installation drive to get yourself out of a sticky situation.

Thanks for reading! If you want to help, or if the site has helped you, you can donate, register to help, write an article, or buy inexpensive hosting to start your site. If you scroll down, you can sign up for the newsletter, vote for the article, and comment.

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How To: Show Disk Information With hwinfo

Today we’re going to be having some fun with hwinfo, available everywhere and used (in this case) to show disk information with hwinfo. This isn’t going to be the most complicated of articles, so it’s safe to assume you can follow along – even if you’re a beginner. You just need to follow the directions.

The tool we’ll be using to show disk information will be hwinfo. This probably isn’t installed by default, but is a very useful tool. We’ll just explore one aspect of hwinfo but there’s a lot more to the application. There may be other articles on this hwinfo application.

Anyhow, if you’d already installed hwinfo and checked the man page, you’d learn that the application defines itself accurately, specifically as:

hwinfo – probe for hardware

That’s a pretty good description and might also be a bit of a clue about hwinfo’s features and goals. In this case, we’re simply examining one particular feature and that is how to show disk information with hwinfo.

I suppose that it’s a bit archaic calling it ‘disks’, but there are plenty of people with spinning platters. It could also be ‘drives’, to ensure we also cover solid-state drives. But, for this article, we’ll use the words interchangeably. After all, you know what I mean.

The hwinfo application is a great application, with a ton of options. It’d be far too much to cover in a single article. There’s enough fodder here for multiple applications, which is nice.

Install hwinfo:

As hwinfo is a terminal-based application, you’re going to need a terminal. You could trivially install this via a GUI application, but I needn’t explain that. I will show you how to install hwinfo with the terminal. It’s available for most distros by default. Just press CTRL + ALT + T to open your terminal, or open it manually from your application menu.

Once you have your terminal open, you’re ready to install hwinfo. You can pick from the following, as it’s a fairly universal application. Try one of the following to do so:






See? You’ll find that hwinfo is an option in pretty much all the default reports. You can get a head start, and learn a lot, by checking the man page (with man hwinfo) if you’d like.

Show Disk Information With hwinfo:

Don’t close your terminal after installing hwinfo. You’re still going to need an open terminal to use hwinfo to show disk information. Fortunately, the commands are a bit unusual but not taxing. As we’re just covering how to show disk information, that will make it easier.

NOTE: To get complete information, you will need elevated permissions. In our case, we’ll be using sudo. If your distro doesn’t support sudo, you’ll need to gain elevated permissions in the manner your distro has designed.

So, with your still open terminal, you can try the first command, which is simply:

That will spit out a lot of information about the various disks you have in your system. It’s a lot of information, perhaps more than you need. If you want to show a nice summary, you’d want this command:

If you want to see a nice summary of block devices, you can just use the following command to show said block devices:

Most folks are either going to want the full information for troubleshooting or one of the latter two choices for basic information. But, you can use any of them that you want to show disk information. It’s a pretty easy process and hwinfo is a very useful application. Perhaps we’ll explore its uses soon.


Well, today we have had a “Nor’easter” and the remains of Hurricane Lee. I was expecting it to be much more mild, but we have trees down and power outages all over the place. In fact, one outage has started a fire. 

However, that didn’t stop me! Nope! I have still not missed a single publication date. I’ve published an article every other day for a long time. So far, so good.

This time around, you got an article about how you can show disk information with hwinfo. That seemed like a fine article to write. It’s not all that long, nor is it all that complicated. If you follow the directions, you should be all set.

As such, I assume a beginner will be able to follow along and able to learn something in the process. I sometimes get feedback about using the terminal in so many articles, but it is a fairly universal tool. There’s no reason to be afraid of the terminal. Instead, embrace it and learn to use it. Once you do, you’ll understand why I write about it so frequently.

Thanks for reading! If you want to help, or if the site has helped you, you can donate, register to help, write an article, or buy inexpensive hosting to start your site. If you scroll down, you can sign up for the newsletter, vote for the article, and comment.

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A Couple More Ways To Find Your File System Type

Today we’re going to revisit a previous subject and share a couple more ways to find your file system type. I’ve covered this subject before, but I only shared a couple of ways. This being Linux, there are multiple file system types and multiple ways to find the details. So, let’s cover it again but with different options.

If you did your installation manually, you probably already know this information. You probably know the file system types you chose to use during the installation process. On the other hand, if you did your installation by just letting the installer use the defaults, you might not know this information. This may also be something like an unknown computer you’re tasked with fixing. So, there are real-world reasons why you might want to know the file system types in use.

If you want to visit the previous article, you can find that here:

How To: Find The File System Type

You could easily have multiple file system types in use right now. This is quite likely if you’re dual-booting with Windows or you’re using EFI as your boot method. You could even have external disks formatted in all sorts of file types.

All of these various file types may need specific commands to repair them and maintain them. You don’t want to go using the wrong tool for the wrong file type. That’d likely make your problems even worse. So, this is good information to have and this article will show you how to find your file system type.

Find Your File System Type:

This requires an open terminal. Like many of these articles, we’ll be using a terminal. It’s painless and it’s a good idea to know some of these commands. The terminal is fairly universal, so you can open your terminal (usually) by pressing CTRL + ALT + T.

In the previous article, we used lsblk and we also used df. Those are both excellent tools and excellent ways to get this information. They’re simple and easily memorized. The two commands we’ll use today will be similar in those regards. This truly is not a complicated task, it’s just fun to cover the different methods that one could use.

Using The mount Command:

The first command we’re going to learn about is the mount command. Don’t worry, this is part of your standard installation and you won’t need to do anything extra to use it. You can check the man page with man mount if you’d like. If you did do so, you’d find that the mount application is described as:

mount – mount a filesystem

No, we won’t be mounting and unmounting anything. We’ll just be using the command to find your file system types. That command’s syntax would look like this:

That’s the command that will show you all of your drives and all of the drive’s file system types in one go. I plugged a couple of external drives in so that I could run the command and show you the expected output:

using the mount command to find the file system type
You can see that there are vfat and ext4 file systems in use. That’s normal. It’s all good!

There’s nothing too eccentric in that output. Those are fairly normal file systems as far as Linux systems go. There are more. There are many more. You can check a list of file system types on Wikipedia.

Using The fsck Command:

Yes, you can even use the fsck command to find the file system types. You’re telling the command to not actually run and just spit out some information, so there’s nothing laborious or complicated with this command. You will need to know the path to the disk in question. I’m sure you know how to do that. Heck, the first command in this article will do that for you.

When you do this with the fsck command, you’re doing so on a disk-by-disk method. If you’re unfamiliar with the fsck command, you can check the man page with man fsck. Once again, you won’t have to install anything. The fsck command is a part of the standard base, files you’ll find on pretty much every distro by default. Anyhow, the man page describes fsck as:

fsck – check and repair a Linux filesystem

We will not be repairing a Linux filesystem (I’ve intentionally stylized this as ‘file system’ as it appears both spellings are in common usage) but we will sort of be checking them. We won’t be checking them for errors because that’d take too long and isn’t a part of this article. If you do want to check your file systems for errors with fsck, you should read this article:

How To: Check A Disk For Errors

Or maybe this article:

Repair Your Linux Filesystem With a Live USB or DVD

Anyhow, if you want to find your file system type with fsck, the syntax is simile and is as follows:

This is usually going to start with a /dev and then the drives populate  (enumerate?) as is logical. You would have drive sda, then partitions on that drive might be sda1, sda2, etc… So, an example command might be:

An example output is as follows:

you can use the fsck command to find the file system type for a specific drive
This only really works on one drive/partition at a time. That’s plenty useful.

See? Pretty useful if you need to know a file system type before working on it.


So, we’ve covered a couple of new ways for you to find your file system type. This time around, we’ve used fsck and mount and both of them are perfectly useful for this application. If you work on multiple computers, if you work on someone else’s computers, if you work on remote computers, etc. then these commands may come in useful. 

Plus, this seemed like a fun article to write. There are all sorts of older articles that could have more information added to them. Some of the older articles contain errors that should be fixed. Some could use being written again but with a more suitable format.

A couple of the articles are just plain garbage and should have been deleted. They weren’t… They should have been, but they weren’t. I should probably go back and write those over again in their entirety. I’ve completely blown it a few times. I do like to point out that I probably learn more than you do by writing these articles and (importantly) getting feedback on them. I do love some feedback, though it’d be cool if it was left here when it adds something to the article.

Thanks for reading! If you want to help, or if the site has helped you, you can donate, register to help, write an article, or buy inexpensive hosting to start your site. If you scroll down, you can sign up for the newsletter, vote for the article, and comment.

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Find And Remove Duplicate Files With fdupes

Today’s article has you cleaning up your storage space as you learn to find and remove duplicate files with fdupes. This isn’t something you need to do often and it’s something that could theoretically break your system. If you’re going to remove duplicate files, it’s a good idea to exercise some caution.

I’ve previously shared another way to remove duplicate files:

Find And Remove Duplicate Files With rdfind

I suppose it’s pretty obvious as to why one might want to remove duplicate files. You do so to keep your storage tidy and you do so to make space when space is limited. There are all sorts of ways to make free space and removing duplicate files is just one of them.

The tool we’ll be using this time around is known as ‘fdupes’ and the man page describes it like this:

fdupes – finds duplicate files in a given set of directories

It’s an easy enough application to install and this article shouldn’t be all that long. You’ll find that fdupes is available in your default repositories, or there’s a good chance that it is in there. Of course, this means it’s easy enough to install.

Installing fdupes:

You can install fdupes with a GUI and your software manager, but you can just as easily install it via the terminal. We’ll cover the latter, as it’s the most universal (and, I find, quickest) method. Of course, you’ll need an open terminal. In most cases you can just press CTRL + ALT + T and your default terminal should open.

With your terminal now open, let’s go ahead and install fdupes:






And More! (Just search your default repositories for ‘fdupes’ and it’ll almost certainly be there.)

As you can see, you’ll find that fdupes is available for pretty much every Linux system out there. Not only is it available, it’s already packaged for you and easy enough to install via the terminal. On top of that, it doesn’t take much space to install fdupes, a mere 110 kB or so.

NOTE: I do not have anything against GUI tools. While I have terminals open at all times, I do the majority of my computer interaction in a browser – specifically a GUI browser. I suggest and write about the terminal because it’s more universal. It’s also often faster, assuming you can type or at least cut and paste than it is to go mucking about with a GUI software installer.

Anyhow, it’s nice and easy to remove duplicate files with fdupes. This article is going to show you how – and the article shouldn’t even be that long! It’s pretty simple.

Remove Duplicate Files With fdupes:

I’m going to assume that you left your terminal open after installing fdupes. If you didn’t, you’ll need to open it again. The only way to run the fdupes application is in the terminal. So, even if you installed it with a GUI, it’s a CLI tool and you’ll need the command line to use it.

The basic syntax is pretty easy, and not entirely unlike rdfind. For example, if you want to find duplicate files, you simply run this command:

So, if you wanted to find duplicates in your home directory, you’d run this:

Don’t worry, you’re safe running that command. That won’t delete anything at all. That fdupes command will simply show you the duplicate files that it found.

If you want to run the fdupes command recursively, that is to check all the folders within the directory, you’d run the command like this:

If you want to calculate the size of the files that would be removed when removing the duplicates, the command is just this:

A summary is also available with this command:

You can also search multiple directories for duplicates. That’d be something like this:

Of course, you can run those commands together to get quite a bit of customization. They’re all reasonably harmless and will simply point out the duplicates as well as some meta information. You can then remove the duplicates by hand if you want.

You can also tell fdupes to remove the duplicates that it found. You’d never want to run this command without knowing what exactly is going to be removed, so don’t do that. Always check to make sure you’re not removing anything of value before automatically removing duplicates.

Fortunately, there’s a bit of a stopgap. You can run the following command and fdupes will ask for confirmation before removing the file:

If you want to go whole-hog and remove every duplicate found, and remove the files without any confirmation, you can run this command:

Of course, that’s just the basics. If you want to know more about fdupes, simply check the man page (man fdupes) for more information.


Hmm… I think I need to clean or replace this keyboard. The colon key is sticking on me. It’s a bit of a pain in the butt.

Anyhow, if you’ve ever wanted to remove duplicate files with fdupes, you now have directions to do so. This being Linux, you have all sorts of options when it comes to removing duplicate files, though I again urge caution when doing so. If you were to run this on the root directory, you’d likely find a lot of duplicates, and removing them might break your system. So, be careful with these tools, as they’re pretty powerful.

I’m not yet out of ideas for articles but it’d be great if folks might suggest something they’d like to read about. You never know, it might be something I know about. As it is, I have to search this site before writing an article, or else I’d end up with even more duplicate articles. I don’t want that and you don’t want that. It’s not all that easy to keep up this pace, writing a new article every other day. I’ve managed so far, but I’m eventually going to miss a day or two. It’s going to happen.

As always…

Thanks for reading! If you want to help, or if the site has helped you, you can donate, register to help, write an article, or buy inexpensive hosting to start your site. If you scroll down, you can sign up for the newsletter, vote for the article, and comment.

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How To: Find Your CPU Information

Today’s article shouldn’t be all that long, as it’s a subject touched on before, as we discuss how to find your CPU information. This will be in the terminal, of course. There are also many ways to find your CPU information. This article will just cover another way that I don’t think we’ve already covered.

I’ve touched on this subject before:

One Way To See CPU Information

In that article, we simply used the ‘cat’ command to read information from a text file. It’s a pretty handy way to find CPU information, but it is not the only way.

You can also get some basic information about your CPU with Screenfetch or Neofetch. I’ve written about those as well:

Screenfetch vs. Neofetch, You Decide!

I’ve even covered ‘lscpu’ in the past. You can read that article here:

A Little About The ‘lscpu’ Command

So, as you can see, there are lots of ways to find out what CPU you’re working with. You can do it graphically, that is in a GUI, if you’d rather. It’s as simple as installing an application called ‘HardInfo’ and you can read more about it here:

Graphically Examine Hardware Info With HardInfo

See? There are all sorts of ways to get information about your CPU. You have all sorts of choices and this article is going to simply detail yet another way to gather this information.

Why? Well, I like to be the kind of person that gives you options. I like that there are so many ways to accomplish a task in Linux.

Why would you want this information? Perhaps you bought a new computer. Then again, you might have paid for a server (virtual or real) and want to confirm that you’re getting what you paid for. You could have multiple devices, such as myself, and not remember what hardware is in each of those devices. 

There are all sorts of reasons why you might want to know your CPU information. There are all sorts of ways to get this information. Today can have a shorter article than we’ve had lately, as we cover this topic yet again.

Find Your CPU Information:

As mentioned in the opening of this article, we’ll be doing this in the terminal. My regular readers will be used to this and will know how to open the terminal. If you don’t know how to open the terminal, you can almost always just press CTRL + ALT + T, and your default terminal will open up. You may otherwise need to open a terminal from your application menu.

With your terminal open, we’ll be using the ‘lshw’ command. You shouldn’t need to install anything. The ‘lshw’ should come pre-installed as it’s a rather basic piece of the common Linux toolbox. If you check the man page (with man lshw), you’ll see that the program is just like many of the other ‘ls* applications, in that it lists hardware. Specifically, it says this:

lshw – list hardware

That’s an accurate enough short description. The actual description says this:

lshw is a small tool to extract detailed information on the hardware configuration of the machine. It can report exact memory configuration, firmware version, mainboard configuration, CPU version and speed, cache configuration, bus speed, etc. on DMI-capable x86 or IA-64 systems and on some PowerPC machines (PowerMac G4 is known to work).

So, the lshw tool is a pretty good tool to have handy when you’re wanting to know information about your hardware. I once botched an article on lshw! I’m sure I’ll botch another one eventually!

Specifically, you simply want to use the command as follows:

You want to run the lshw command with sudo (or as root, if sudo is not available) so that you have the elevated permissions to retrieve full information in the command’s output. If you try to run lshw without elevated permissions, it will remind you that you should do so.

On the man page, you will discover a bug. I’ve yet to see this bug in real life, but there is a bug. The man page explains it like this:

Not all architectures supported by GNU/Linux are fully supported (e.g. CPU detection).

So, that’s something to be aware of. I doubt it’s going to impact (m)any of my readers because we’re almost always using fairly common CPUs. It should correctly identify your CPU.


Well, it’s a pretty basic subject and an easy enough command to keep in mind. If you want to find your CPU information, there are a ton of ways to do so and we’ve just covered one more way. This seemed like an easy article to write and I could use an easy day. I think we could all use an easy day once in a while, but the show must go on and you get yet another article for your enjoyment.

I have been making the articles longer. I’m trying to share more information along with the directions. I think it’s good for understanding and it doesn’t take that much more time. If you have an opinion on the matter, please leave a comment.

Thanks for reading! If you want to help, or if the site has helped you, you can donate, register to help, write an article, or buy inexpensive hosting to start your site. If you scroll down, you can sign up for the newsletter, vote for the article, and comment.

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