I need to install Linux on my next mobile, a smartphone, which will be my first one. How do I do that? I mean, it surely won't have a CD drive and I don't see a way for including a USB drive or even getting into BIOS. Can I install it via computer when the smartphone is plugged in?

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  • Is there also a possibility to go the computer-like way? (Plug in the bootable media (e.g. external HD(D)) -> run the installation file (perhaps an .iso or something) -> old OS is destroyed and *nix is installed)
    – Nepumuk
    Feb 8, 2016 at 19:01
  • I think it should be doable, but I don't know. I don't know much about Android, I've just posted link that looked useful. Feb 8, 2016 at 19:32
  • It is not as easy as sticking a bootable USB abd installing it as Android systems have protections in place to disallow people breaking into the phones and place malware etc. The best information you can find regarding this, will be in the XDA developers forums. Here is one thread: forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1585009 I'm sure there are plenty more. You just need patience to read thru them. There is no cookie-cutter recipe.
    – MelBurslan
    Feb 8, 2016 at 19:50
  • A word of advice that has stood me in good general stead: Do NOT do this with a phone you can't afford to have unusable for a few days, just in case. Aug 1, 2017 at 10:32

1 Answer 1

  1. You can install Linux Os on your smartphone using Linux Deploy.

    Install Linux Deploy from Google Play store.


    This application is open source software for quick and easy installation of the operating system (OS) GNU/Linux on your Android device. The application creates a disk image on a flash card, mounts it and installs an OS distribution. Applications of the new system are run in a chroot environment and working together with the Android platform. All changes made on the device are reversible, i.e. the application and components can be removed completely. Installation of a distribution is done by downloading files from official mirrors online over the internet. The application requires superuser rights (ROOT).

    The program supports multi language interface. You can manage the process of installing the OS, and after installation, you can start and stop services of the new system (there is support for running your scripts) through the UI. The installation process is reported as text in the main application window. During the installation, the program will adjust the environment, which includes the base system, SSH server, VNC server and desktop environment. The program interface can also manage SSH and VNC settings.

    Installing a new operating system takes about 30 minutes. The recommended minimum size of a disk image is 1024 MB (with LXDE), and without a GUI - 512 MB. When you install Linux on the flash card with the FAT32 file system, the image size should not exceed 4095 MB! After the initial setup the default password for SSH and VNC is changeme. The password can be changed through standard OS tools.

    Tutorial on YouTube

  2. You can install UBUNTU

  3. Tutorial to install Ubuntu/Debian in any Android mobile

  • The thing is that I'm not convinced by some circumstances coming with a smartphone. One of them is (user) privacy/not-being-tracked/retaing check on my (personal) data. Therefore, I won't use anything related with Google or similar. Otherwise, I'd use the alerady installed OS, which is obvious for me.
    – Nepumuk
    Feb 8, 2016 at 20:05
  • Is there something similar on F-Droid?
    – Nepumuk
    Jan 13, 2017 at 8:30
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    @Nepumuk For F-Droid you can use UserLAnd or AnLinux.
    – GAD3R
    Feb 8, 2019 at 22:11

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