How to reinstall Ubuntu on our computer

Although Ubuntu is a reliable, robust operating system that does not usually give problems, we can always try things that make us experience failures that we do not know how to fix. What can we do in this case? One alternative, which some will think is better and others not worth it, is reinstall Ubuntu. Reinstalling an Ubuntu-based operating system is a fairly simple process that we’ll explain below, as well as some reasons why we might want to do so and the differences between installation types.

Differences between Install, Reinstall and Update

  • install: Using this option what we will be doing is remove the system we had installed on our computer or install next to it using dual-boot. It would all start at 0.
  • update: If we upgrade the system, Ubuntu will try to maintain all the files and configurations we have made and install a higher version of Ubuntu. This may be an option next October, when Ubuntu 16.10 Yakkety Yak is released.
  • reinstall: This is what we are going to explain in this post and what we will do is keep all the settings and files, but the system will be reinstalled trying to fix all the issues we are experiencing for any reason.

Reasons to reinstall Ubuntu

  • One of the reasons may be that we have annoyed the GRUB and we cannot enter the system. Although it can be recovered otherwise, it is likely that a user will want to make sure to remove the root issue and prefer to reinstall Ubuntu.
  • If we are one of those users who like to tweak everything, sometimes we can cause an annoying problem that we do not know how to locate. A good way to eliminate these kind of rebellious problems is to reinstall the operating system.
  • It may also be a good idea to reinstall Ubuntu if we want to clean it up. Not that Ubuntu needs it, but there are people who are a bit “hypochondriac” in this regard and occasionally want to remove some issues (although in this case I would recommend installing 0, which is more hypochondriac in software than no one).

How to reinstall Ubuntu

  1. Although it doesn’t have to happen, I would recommend backing up our personal folder, or at least the files we want to keep. Prevention is better than crying.
  2. Already with a backup done, we will be ready to create a bootable USB with Ubuntu. I would do it with UNetbootin, which is fast and reliable.
  3. We insert the bootable USB from Ubuntu into a USB port on our computer.
  4. We turn on the computer and select our Pendrive as the boot drive. How you do this will depend on your computer. On my little AAO250 I had it set up to enter the boot drive selection if I pressed F12, but you can also change the command to do it automatically. It is best to go into the BIOS and set it to read USB first, then the DVD drive and then the hard drive.
  5. When booting from USB we will see several options. We are interested in «Try Ubuntu without installing»O«install Ubuntu«. The first would enter a Live Session and the second would go directly to the installer. If we want to connect to a hidden Wi-Fi network, the first option is better.

Ubuntu installation screen

  1. If we have chosen the option to test the system without installing, we will have to double click on the icon of “Install Ubuntu.” If not, we move on to the next step.

to Install Ubuntu |

  1. Then we choose our language and click “Continue”.

Choose the language to install Ubuntu


  1. On the next screen, I recommend checking both boxes and clicking Continue. If we do, we will have to connect to the internet. There is a step that will tell us if we want to connect to a Wi-Fi network, as long as we have not connected to the Internet before starting the installation.

Install third-party software on Ubuntu

  1. In the next window, we chose the “Reinstall” option. It doesn’t seem available to me because I also have a Windows partition.

reinstall Ubuntu

  1. We accept the notice you will show us.

Accept installation notice

  1. Then select our time zone and click “Continue”.


  1. We choose the keyboard layout and click “Continue”. If you don’t know what it is, you can type in the dialog box below to detect which one we use.

Select keyboard layout

  1. In the next window, we need to create our user. We put our username, the name of our computer, which is not important but is what we will always see in the terminal, and password. Then we click “Continue”.

Ubuntu user settings

  1. Now we can only wait.

Step 7 Installation

  1. When done, click “Restart” to start the system. You will see an image like the following, but with the Ubuntu background (this screenshot is from Ubuntu MAT):


  1. If we have the BIOS set to boot from USB, we will need to remove the flash drive before it starts or else it will re-enter.

Already reinstalled Ubuntu? How have you been?

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