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This is about installing linux distributions without using a CD or DVD rom just use the ISO in your hard disk.

I have written this complete article on my blog also http://mightydreams.blogspot.com/2007/09/i-am-describing-here-method-to-install.html.  I am describing here a method to install Linux without using a DVD ROM or CD Drive I have checked it myself .

there are many ways to do so
you can install Linux by
1) booting from the network
2) Having a ISO image on your hard disk
3)Boot from USB
4) Installing a linux system from scratch by building your own

I am assuming that Linux is not installed on your system and neither grub or lilo is there. This method is taking Open Suse 10.2 Image but is same for Fedora or Debian or any other distro. There is one check point in case you used Nero to copy CD or DVD image then
it might have been possible that you copied the image and it is file with dot nrg extension in that case you need to get the ISO from NRG

I have installed by all the above methods but I am describing here the simplest one since there are many new comers who would not be able to understand other methods.  Before doing all this make sure:

1)that you have enabled the option of viewing file extensions in View Options of folder view.
2) If you use Fedora or any other distributions do not use the NTFS partition to store the image although Open Suse 10.2 can work from NTFS partition I have done it using NTFS partition only but will not suggest you to do same
3) Most important do not install linux on same partition on which you have the ISO from which you are installing everything since it will format that hard disk that holds the image you are using there is an image named openSUSE-10.2-GM-DVD-i386.iso which you would have downloaded rename it to suse.iso (not necessary to do so but will make your life simple )

Similarly for any other linux distro you might have image of fedora or debian etc rename them to some simple filename.
The image is 3.6 GB then download the grub for dos from:


Before some one reads the following lines just informing while you install winzip or winrar by default they are associated with ISO filetype so you may see your downloaded ISO as an icon that says it can be extracted via Winrar just go and disable this in options tab from
Winrar menu if u want to burn the ISO directly to CS just go to Nero and select burn image to disk and select the ISO u do not need to make it a bootable CD or DVD.

Extract the downloaded grub4dos using winzip or winrar ,you will get a folder name grub copy it to C drive then create a folder name boot in C drive of your windows partition (C drive is not necessary but makes life simple ) .
Now copy grldr from grub to C:

add a line C:grldr="Start Linux" to
your boot.ini (even if I have mentioned the README there says it all)

Now different distributions of Linux have different kernel names like
Fedora: vmlinuz and initrd.img
Suse: linux and initrd
Mandriva: vmlinuz and all.rdz
Ubuntu: vmlinuz and initrd.gz
Gentoo: gentoo and gentoo.igz
Knoppix: vmlinuz and initrd.img
Slackware: bzImage and initrd.img
Debian: vmlinuz and initrd.gz

Use winrar to navigate the ISO image you will go inside folder name boot or where ever the kernel are in your CD or DVD ISO

( I took Open Suse 10.2 inside the installation media there was a boot folder inside it was a loader path is
that had kernel image named linux and the initrd name initrd both are needed)

copy the kernel images vmlinuz and initrd.gz which you see by winrar in ISO archieve from your ISO to folder boot in C drive
both files vmlinuz and initrd are required for any linux system to boot

You can use winrar to view files and extract only two files rather than extracting whole ISO

Then you don't need to do any thing just restart the computer and you will get a screen that says
Microsoft Windows XP
Start Linux

Choose the option start linux then go to grub you will find an entry that says command prompt

Use command prompt since even after making changes as said in README some times it did not worked
press enter to select the command prompt option you will get a grub shell showing some thing like this
grub >

now type on grub prompt (grub> ) Note u do not need to type grub > it is already there on your screen if not you did some mistake

In my case it was suse so
grub >kernel (hd0,0)/boot/linux
grub >initrd (hd0,0)/boot/initrd
grub >boot

If you are using some other distribution then above commands will change like this
grub >kernel (hd0,0)/boot/vmlinuz (depending upon your kernel name)
grub >initrd (hd0,0)/boot/initrd.gz (depending upon your initrd name)
grub >boot

press enter then
kernel will load and will ask you to choose the medium to boot from choose the medium hard disk it might give some error that insert CD
just ignore it if it asks to hit back button then it that then choose the medium etc and then choose the hard disk partition to boot from
then it will ask for the file name enter suse.iso in the partition where you have it then press enter if you did every thing right
installation will start if you messed up then probably you might get an error like boot.catalog not found or some other error like this only
installation starts it might display some error messages just ignore them and press enter or hit Back button then choose language keyboard installation then choose installation medium it gives 3 options:
Hard disk
choose the hard disk and then from the hard disk choose the correct partition where you copied the 3.6 GB suse.iso not do not format the same partition on which image is there

By looking at the above procedure do not get confused by the network installation procedure which is quite different from the normal ones you can read complete method of Network booting and PXE intallation on my blog.

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Comments about this article
writen by: ramesh_seervi on 2009-07-28 06:04:08
This is what I was looking for so many days.
This is really good
RE: fantastic written by ramesh_seervi:
writen by: ramesh_seervi on 2009-07-28 06:04:10
This is what I was looking for so many days.
This is really good
RE: fantastic written by ramesh_seervi:
good, just one question
writen by: grishi_111 on 2009-08-21 12:48:24
thanks Tapas Mishra for this valuable article.
although i didn't use this method before, i have installed from hard disk using unetbootin.
just one question...
is there any reason to use this method just other than extracting full .iso file using unetbootin?
you should suggest at least new linux users to use unetbootin.
yes, for familiar user method is not much complicated either.
RE: good, just one question written by grishi_111:
RE: good, just one question
writen by: velocity on 2010-06-18 12:30:04
Depends upon you.It is for enthusiastic people to learn and do experiments.I never stopped you from doing what you want.
Reply to velocity:

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