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Test Ubuntu without repartitioning your harddrive

Many people in the support channels on IRC ask if there is a way to try Ubuntu without having to repartition the drive. There is of course the possibility to run it from the live-CD, but it is very slow and the settings are not permanently stored.

Let me introduce Wubi.

Wubi is a free software installer, specialized for installing Ubuntu and its derivates (Kubuntu and Edubuntu). What makes Wubi special is that it is a Windows based installer, which installs everything into a special loop-device. The user will see this disk images as a normal file within Windows, but it contains the entire Ubuntu installation.

wubi.png

I have not yet had the opportunity to try the Wubi installer, but will of course test this when the time is right. Do note that this is beta software, so don’t be surprised if everything still does not work.

It is the perfect way for people interested in trying out Ubuntu for a while without committing to change the filesystem or having to format or other potentially dangerous operations.