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UNetbootin (Universal Netboot Installer) is an easy to use LiveUSB flash key rescue disk generator with a GUI.


Install sys-boot/unetbootin:

root #emerge --ask unetbootin


There are two options to use ISOs in UNetbootin. The distribution option will use UNetbootin to automatically download a disk image for the distribution of choice. The diskimage option is used when the user already has a disk image that they would like to use.

Normal Use

Using the Distribution Option

  1. Select the Distribution option at the top.
  2. Use the drop down menus to pick the distribution and the version.
  3. Use the menu at the bottom to select the type of drive that will be used.
  4. Select the drive to be used when flashing the disk image.
  5. Click OK when ready.

Using the Diskimage Option

  1. Select the Diskimage option on the bottom.
  2. Select either ISO or Floppy depending on the type of bootable image being used.
  3. Use the file browser to select the bootable image to be used.
  4. If needed, select the amount of space needed to preserve files across reboots using the buttons provided.
  5. Use the menu at the bottom to select the type of device that will be used.
  6. Select drive to be used when flashing the disk image.
  7. Click OK when ready.

Windows 7 live USB

Making a Windows 7 bootable USB takes several steps that must be executed in a specific order. This requires UNetbootin 494 binaries from SourceForge. It is also a good idea to also have the regular sys-boot/unetbootin package installed to satisfy all of the binary dependencies.

  1. Install sys-block/gparted and sys-fs/ntfs3g.
  2. Using GParted, format an 8GB or larger medium as NTFS.
  3. Mount the freshly formatted USB disk.
  4. Get the unetbootin-linux-494 binary from SourceForge.
  5. Run
    user $chmod a+x unetbootin-linux-494
  6. Run
    root #./unetbootin-linux-494
  7. Select diskimage, then locate the Windows ISO using the file browser.
  8. Under Drive, select your USB drive's NTFS partition.
  9. Select OK, and go have a cup of hot coco as this will take some time. Exit instead of rebooting. Then unmount and remove the flash drive.


UNetbootin Appearing Blank When Opened

Sometimes UNetbootin will appear as a blank window when opened. If this happens, it is a problem with the script that runs the executable. This can be fixed by running:

root #QT_X11_NO_MITSHM=1 /usr/bin/unetbootin.elf

This can be run either as root or with sudo.