How to install Elementary OS Alongside Windows

Elementary OS is a fast, lightweight Linux distribution based on Ubuntu. If you are migrating from a MAC or if you like the looks of Mac OS, then you would love the look and feel of Elementary OS. Visually, elementary OS is crisp, intuitive and a lot of its designs are inspired from Mac OS.

As Elementary is based on the Ubuntu LTS version it’s stable and can be easily used for work PCs. And as it’s based on Ubuntu you can easily find fixes for any problems you face. Elementary OS is even featured in our list of Best Linux distros in 2020. So let’s just install it and use this amazing Linux distro.

Minimum System Requirements for Elementary OS

These are the recommended minimum system requirements for Latest Elementary OS 5.1 Hera

  • Intel Core-i3 or comparable dual-core 64-bit processor
  • 15 GB of Hard drive Space
  • 4 GB of System Memory (RAM)
  • 1024×768 Display

If you want you can also follow this step by step guide below.

Download Elementary OS

Download Elementary OS

Let’s start the installation procedure by downloading the Elementary OS. Go to this official download page and download Elementary OS ISO, To download put any amount in custom amount and click on Purchase Elementary OS. You can even download for free by putting zero in the custom amount. But if you like the OS do consider donating something for their awesome work.

When you click on Purchase Elementary OS it’s downloading will begin. Till downloading completes let’s create space for the installation of Elementary OS.

Create Free Space for Installation

As in this tutorial, we are installing Elementary OS alongside Windows we are going to create installation space for Elementary OS by shrinking partition. Type Disk Management in the search box or right-click on the start menu and click on Disk Management.

Shrink space for Installation of Elementary OS in dual boot

This opens Disk Management of Windows operating system. Disk management can be used to modify disk partition from within the Windows.

Now find the disk that has a lot of free space and right-click on it. Select Shrink Volume this will open a dialog box. In Enter the amount of space to shrink, enter the amount of space you would like to allocate to the Elementary OS in MB.

Shrink space to install Elementary OS alongside Windows

Here we are allocating 102400 MB (100 GB) for Elementary OS installation. You can allocate according to your needs but 15 GB is the bare minimum. Then click on Shrink and its done. You will see Unallocated Space of 100.00 GB, just close the disk management now.

Create a Bootable USB drive to Install Elementary OS

To create a bootable USB drive for installation of Elementary OS we are using Rufus. Rufus is free, open-source, easy to use and small in size. Download Rufus from this link and open Rufus.

Open Rufus and Plug a USB flash drive into your PC (Note: All the data on this USB flash drive will be deleted). Rufus autoselects USB drive just verify that it’s the correct flash drive that you want to use.

Now click on SELECT and browse to the downloaded ISO file of Elementary OS. It’s generally in Downloads, select that Elementary ISO file and press START. You don’t generally need to change other settings in Rufus. It will prompt that all the data on this USB drive will be deleted, just click on OK and wait till the process gets completed.

Booting from Elementary OS USB drive.

Now when you are ready to install, you need to boot from USB flash drive to start the installation of Elementary OS. Restart your PC and when the motherboard logo appears, keep pressing the F10 or F12 function key(this key varies from computer to computer).

You will see a screen with options to boot from Windows and USB flash drive. On that screen select USB flash drive by pressing arrow key and then press enter.

If the above method doesn’t work for you then after restart press bios key. Its F1 or F2 generally, and then navigate to the Boot tab. In that tab, devices will appear in boot priority order. In that order move the USB drive at first position and then press F10 to save and exit. After restart your system will automatically boot from the USB drive.

Installation Of Elementary OS

Select Install elementary

It takes some time to boot from the USB flash drive. As soon as it finishes booting from USB flash drive you will see a glimpse of Elementry OS installer. You will see options to Try Elementary OS or Install Elementary OS. You can also try Elementary OS without even installing it and it doesn’t affect any files on your PC.

When you are sure to install Elementary OS click on Install Elementary OS. Wait and you will see a dialog box to choose Keyboard layout, select it and click on Continue. Then it will ask to connect to Wi-Fi, connect it. After that it will prompt to install updates and software. Tick on both the options and click on Continue.

select Someting else in Installation type while installing Elementary OS

Now in option to select Installation type, select Something else and click on Continue.

Creating partitions to install

You will see all the partition preset in your system at this point. But as we have already created free space on the hard drive, we just need to create new partitions instead of modifying others. Now follow the instructions below and create the required partitions. If you don’t want to Dual boot then select the partition with the other OS installed and click on and then follow the steps below.

create partitions for elementary OS
  • Click on Free space of size that we created earlier and then click on + sign.
  • First, we need to create a partition for root. Enter 20480 MB in size, tick on Logical and Beginning of this Space. Set mount point as / and click OK. (Here we are creating root partition of 20 GB, you can create according to the space available but 4 Gb should be minimum.)
  • Now create the second partition for Swap. Set the size to 4096 MB, tick on Logical and select use as Swap. (If you have less than 8GB of ram Swap should be double of your Physical memory(RAM). But if you have more than 8 GB of physical memory than Swap should be half the size of it.)
  • Allot the remaining space to the home partition. Tick on Logical and select mount point as /home, click OK.
  • Now when you are done click on Install Now.

On-screen Installation Instructions

After you click Install Now you will get certain simple onscreen instruction. First, select your time zone and press continue. Then it will ask for certain details like name and password. Do note this password will be required to login to Elementary OS. Fill in the details and click on Continue. This will start the installation of Elementary OS on your system.

Completion of Installation of Elementary OS

The installer will take some time to copy all files and complete installation. When the installation completes it will show a prompt that Installation is complete. Click on Restart Now and it will ask you to remove USB, remove USB flash drive and then press enter.

As we have installed Elementary OS alongside Windows after a reboot you will see Grub bootloader to choose between Elementary OS and Windows. Select Elementary OS and press enter.

First Boot of Elementary OS

At the start, you will see your name and password option, enter the password you kept earlier and press enter. As the OS starts you will get a dialog box for Welcome to elementary OS. You can click on Skip all or next depending on your choice.


This completes the installation of Elementary OS. If you have any question feel free to ask us in comments we would love to help you.

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