Ubuntu MATE is one of few Ubuntu official distro flavours. Said as one one of good customizable Linux distro while being lighter than original Ubuntu, that’s why I want to tried it on my Dynabook R734/K laptop.
Licosha — Have known about the beauty of GNU/Linux OS around 2 years ago, I was addicted to try various Linux distros (GNU/Linux OS distribution) created by various Linux communities. And my second ever Linux distro is when I dual booting the Ubuntu MATE 20.04 with installed Windows on my Toshiba Dynabook R734/K laptop.
Steps Installing dual boot Ubuntu Mate and Windows on Toshiba Dynabook R734/K (Manual partitioning)
- Download Ubuntu MATE image for AMD64 (64 bit) processor at the official website: Ubuntu MATE download release
- Prepare the Ubuntu Mate installation media. Here I am using Ventoy to make the Ubuntu Mate image file (
- Prepare new empty partition for where the Ubuntu MATE will be installed. We can use Windows built-in tools on the “Disk Info” to split and make new partition on our hard drive, typically the space needed for Ubuntu MATE should be at least ±32 GB or more recommended, and give it label like “Ubuntu MATE” to make sure we can distinguish it.
- It’s a good idea to disconnect all external devices especially storage devices before hand to ease the installation process (avoiding formatting/erasing mistakes).
- Enter Dynabook R734/K “Boot Menu” (BIOS menu): Restart laptop, then when the power LED turned on (but the screen not turned on yet), repeatedly press the F12 until it entered the boot menu/BIOS menu.
- Now we are in the BIOS Boot Menu. If we haven’t plugged in the Ubuntu Mate installation media (e.g. USB storage stick), now is the time.
- The installation media drive should be detected in the boot menu, we can just select it to directly boot into it (In my case here, to the Ventoy boot menu). Alternatively, we can adjust the boot menu to prioritize the installation media so it can boot automatically if the installation media is detected when we restart the laptop by setting it:
- On the Boot Menu main menu, choose “Enter Setup”.
- On the side menu, choose “Advanced”, scroll down and choose → “Change Boot Order”.
- For example here I use a USB storage stick where Ventoy and the Ubuntu MATE image installed, so make “USB Memory” at the top of the “Boot Priority Options”. Don’t forget to click “OK”.
- On the side menu, choose “Exit” → “Exit Saving Changes”.
- On the Boot Menu main menu, choose “Enter Setup”.
- Now in Ventoy boot menu, first we might want to switch to “GRUB2 Mode” (increase compatibility in booting Linux images), press Ctrl+R to switch to GRUB2 Mode. Next, just choose the Ubuntu MATE image file (
iso) to run the Ubuntu MATE live boot environment.
- On the Ubuntu Mate GRUB menu, we might want to choose “Try Ubuntu MATE without installing” to enter the live boot environment to test run it first before installing it permanently to our hard drive.
- After we entered Ubuntu MATE desktop in the boot live environment, click on the shortcut on the desktop “Install Ubuntu MATE…” to begin the installation process.
- Follow the installation wizard configuring language, keyboard, connect to network (optional), and softwares installation options.
- “Installation type” window: Here I am gonna use the manual method, so tick “Something else” option.
- After Continue, we will be presented the storage partitions list. First on the bottom, “Device for bootloader installation” typically this should be the main hard disk of our laptop where the laptop bootloader exist. In my case, there is only one hardisk so it should be
/dev/sda(also by looking from the disk name).
- Now on the main table of partition list, we choose the partition where the Ubuntu MATE will be installed. In my case, I have prepared an empty partition around ±40 GB, and it is the second partition made I have splitted using Windows partition tool, it is the
- Right click on the partition we choose for Ubuntu MATE to be installed, then click “Change”:
- After the partition changes options have been made, select the partition again by left click it and then click “Install Now” button on the bottom to begin the Ubuntu MATE installation process.
- Continue following the installation wizard configuring the rest like location, creating login credentials, etc., and waiting the installation process done.
- After the installation has been completed, click “Restart Now” to restart the laptop.
- Now the laptop should be boot into GRUB bootloader, we can choose the operating system to boot. In my case, it is either “Ubuntu” which is the newly installed Ubuntu MATE or the old friend Windows 10. ????
This tutorial may also be the same whether we are using another Windows version like Windows 7, 8.1 etc. and/or with another Ubuntu-based Linux distro.
Ubuntu MATE quick review on my Toshiba Dynabook R734/K laptop
As a newbie to GNU/Linux desktop operating system world, my first ever Linux desktop is Linux Mint. And because that, I think I will always compare any other Linux distro I will try and use in the future with the first experience, Linux Mint. Ubuntu MATE just like it’s name, uses MATE desktop unlike Linux Mint that uses Cinnamon desktop.
As a Linux newbie, the first impression for me in judging a Linux distro will be how it looks. And it’s not that bad, but on first impression Ubuntu MATE just somehow more cluttered, like panel icons have incosistent sizes. It also seems harder or not so flexible to customize the desktop UI or.
While the performance on my Toshiba Dynabook R734/K laptop, I think it is a little bit snappier than Cinnamon’s Linux Mint.