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The title says it all! More specifically, I am running Fedora18 on my main HDD. I have a second HDD in the "UltraBay" slot of my ThinkPad W520--eSata connection.

Is there a possibility to avoid creating a LiveCD/USB, etc, and, perhaps, to directly write the extracted ISO contents of a different distro (Ubuntu) to the second drive; or to use a virtual system as a means of facilitating a "non-live/non-virtual"/REAL installation of an OS?

There's got to be a better solution than having to deal with the annoying media-creation! I'm not too familiar with PXE booting, but it seems that even that adds an extra step of preparing the network server/system for allowing access, etc.

Thanks for any and all comments and answers.

Docs and Resources

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Yes, it is possible to install linux from another linux install. One way is known as "poor man's install". You create a partition, copy the ISO contents there and use GRUB to boot and start the installer from that partition. There are several guides available online, e.g.:


Debian (see Installation media: Hard Disk)

Fedora (see Preparing for a Hard Drive installation)

Another way would be to "bootstrap" a distro from another distro (see this question on U&L) e.g.:



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If anyone else has some supporting info/sources, please feel free to add it on here. I'll try to make it more accessible, and easier to find when searching for related issues. Thanks – ILMostro_7 Mar 12 '13 at 13:01

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