You’ve read the release notes, you just can’t wait to play with the new features or try
Linux Mint, and your download just finished successfully. You’re ready to burn a CD
and to boot on it... but hey! Wait for a second!
If that CD is faulty you will experience weird bugs and will have a lot of trouble finding
help. The two most common reasons for a CD to be faulty are:
• An issue with the download causing problems in your ISO file
• An error during the burn process that alters the contents of your burned liveCD
The MD5 signature, which is present on the download page, provides a quick way for
you to make sure that your ISO file is exactly like it should be. So, let’s check the ISO
file you just downloaded before we burn it and save ourselves from a lot of potential
If you run any version of Linux you probably already have the md5sum program
installed. Open a terminal and “cd” to the directory where your ISO file is (for instance, if
“LinuxMint-7.iso” is on the Desktop), open a terminal and type:
This command should output a series of numbers and letters which comprise the MD5
sum, or signature, of your ISO file. By design, any small change to the ISO file will cause
this signature to be different, allowing us to verify that the file is exactly as it should be.
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Compare that signature with the one on the download page of the Linux Mint website. If
the two signatures are the same, then you know your ISO file is exactly the same as the
original and you can now get ready to burn it on CD.
If you happen to run Windows, chances are you don’t have md5sum installed. You can
get it from here: etree.org | md5sum.exe
Place the ISO file and the md5sum.exe in the same place (let’s say in C:\) and run
“cmd.exe”. In the command line environment, type the following commands:
Then compare the signature to the one present on the website.
Burn the ISO to CD
Now that you have checked the ISO file with MD5, you are ready to burn it to a CD.
Note: Some editions might require a DVD. Basically, if the ISO is larger than 700MB you need to burn it
on a DVD (preferably a DVD-R).
Get a blank CD-R (a CD-RW should work as well, but this type of media is known to
have compatibility issues) and your favorite marker and label the CD. Although labeling
your CD's sounds trivial, you should be sure to do so, as you can easily end up with 20
unlabeled and unidentifiable discs on your desk. :)
Insert the blank CD-R in the drive and get ready to burn the ISO.
If you’re running Linux with Gnome right-click on the ISO file and select “Write to
If you’re running Linux with KDE, launch K3B and in the “Tools” menu choose “Write
If you’re running Windows you can use a program like ISO Recorder or InfraRecorder:
ISO Recorder v 2
Note: Make sure to burn the ISO image to disk, not on the disk. A very common mistake, especially for
people using Nero, is to actually burn the ISO file on the disk.. as a data file. The ISO file is an image of a
disk so it needs to be burnt not as a file which will appear on the disk, but as an ISO image which will be
decompressed and which content will be burnt onto the disc. After burning the CD you shouldn't see the
ISO file within the disc... you should see folders like “casper” or “isolinux”... Most burning software has a
special option for this.