How To Create An Ubuntu Bootable USB On MacOS

Ubuntu is a popular Linux distribution developed by Canonical. It is free and open-source and works well with a wide range of computers and was first released in October 2004. A new version of this software is released every six months while the long term release version is released every two years. If you want to try out this operating system then you will need to create a bootable disk in order to install it. In this latest installment of our troubleshooting series we will show you how to create an Ubuntu bootable USB on MacOS.

How To Create An Ubuntu Bootable USB On MacOS

There are several prerequisites that you will need to satisfy first in order to make the bootable USB.

The first step is to make sure that the USB stick has been formatted. Make sure that you have already made a backup copy of any data that is stored in this USB stick.

  • Launch Disk Utility from Applications>Utilities or Spotlight search
  • Insert your USB stick and observe the new device added to Disk Utility
  • Select the USB stick device (you may need to enable the option View>Show All Devices) and select Erase from the toolbar (or right-click menu)
  • Set the format to MS-DOS (FAT) and the scheme to GUID Partition Map
  • Check you’ve chosen the correct device and click Erase

The next step is to install and run Etcher

  • Download Etcher for MacOS from here
  • Mount the program or run it in place. Make sure to enable ‘App Store and identified developers’ in the ‘Security & Privacy’ pane of System Preferences.

There are three steps to creating a bootable USB on MacOS using Etcher.

  • Select image: will open a file requester from which should navigate to and select the ISO file downloaded previously. By default, the ISO file will be in your Downloads folder.
  • Select drive: replaced by the name of your USB device if one is already attached, lets you select your target device. You will be warned if the storage space is too small for your selected ISO.
  • Flash: will activate when both the image and the drive have been selected. As with Disk Utility, Etcher needs low-level access to your storage hardware and will ask for your password after selection.

After you enter your password Etcher will then start creating the bootable USB.

If you want to use the USB stick on your  Mac then you should restart or power-on the Mac with the USB stick inserted while the Option/alt(⌥) key is pressed. The ‘Startup Manager’  will appear which shows bootable devices connected to the machine. Your USB stick should appear as gold/yellow and labelled ‘EFI Boot’. Selecting this will lead you to the standard Ubuntu boot menu.

Having Issues with your computer? Feel free to contact us using this form. We’ll try to help.


Leave a Comment