Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Sunday, October 31, 2021 at 15:51

This tutorial explains how to setup Zorin OS 16 to a computer for end-users. This includes methods to install either to internal hard disk or external drive storage, even a USB Flash Drive, dualboot or singleboot, and with either UEFI-GPT or BIOS-MBR options. Please make backup  if you are dualbooting and be extra careful following every single step. Let's start!

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Want a Zorin OS Computer?

Most computer and phone users, those billions of people, do computing without installing an operating system manually by themselves. If you want that way instead, you can simply purchase a quality computer preinstalled with Zorin OS. Visit Zorin Shop for more information. As the opposite, if you instead want to install Zorin OS manually to an existing computer, this whole tutorial is for you.

(Star Labs, a computer offered with Zorin OS)

Installation Types

There are various ways to install Zorin OS by this tutorial:

  1. Install Zorin OS into your internal hard disk, without existing Windows OS.
  2. Install Zorin OS into your internal hard disk, dualboot with Windows.
  3. Install Zorin OS into an external storage, like a USB flash drive.
  4. For any one of those three, installation may be in either BIOS/MBR mode or UEFI/GPT mode. 



Before doing the installation, you should prepare minimum requirements below. We consider the most affordable and easiest way to install Zorin OS for most computer users, including you, is by installing it to a USB flash disk, for this solves and prevents many issues e.g. enabling end-users to dualboot without the risks of destroying stored data not to mention this gives many advantages e.g. portability. This tutorial practices the installation to a USB flash disk (installation type no. 3) that is automatically enable dualboot (if any) and reasonably safer and easier to do for new users.

System requirements:

  • CPU: 64-bit Intel or AMD with 1GHz speed
  • RAM: 2 GB
  • Storage: 15 GB (for Core & Education)
  • Display: 800x600 resolution

Required tools and materials:

  • Knowledge and experience in installing operating systems
  • Zorin OS 16 Core Edition image file
  • 1 x USB flash drive as the bootable medium
  • 1 x USB flash drive as the OS disk storage (for flash drive installation)
  • 20 GB free hard disk space (for hard disk installation)
  • GPT-formatted hard disk (for UEFI installation), MBR-formatted one (for BIOS installation

Where to Download Zorin OS

Once preparations fulfilled, you should have Zorin OS itself. Zorin OS 16 can be downloaded from If you do now know how to download one, follow our guide here. You will receive the file named Zorin-OS-16-Core-64-bit.iso by size about 2.9 GB. Once downloaded, follow next step to make a bootable medium.

(Official Download Page of Zorin OS)

Making Bootable Medium

In order to install Zorin OS, you must have a bootable medium. To make a bootable medium, or in other words, write your Zorin OS to a USB flash drive, click here if you are an existing GNU/Linux user and click here if you are a Windows or MacOS user. Once created, follow next step to boot up your computer.

Booting Up Computer

Plug your bootable USB in → immediately, turn your computer on and enter BIOS → turn the BIOS option to boot into USB → save and restart → your computer now booting and should display Zorin OS on screen. Once Zorin OS booted up, follow the Installation procedures next step.

(The desktop of Zorin OS with the system installer opened)


The actual installation procedures start and end here.  

Step 1. Choose a Language. 

Select English (US) from the selection and click Continue.  

Step 2. Choose a Keyboard.

Select English (US) too and click Continue.  

Step 3. Choose a Network.

Select 'I do not want to connect ..." and click Continue. This will make the process faster and the user can still update afterwards anyway. 

Step 4. Choose an Update Method.

Deselect all choices and click Continue. 

Step 5. Choose Installation Type.

The option "Erase Disk and Install Zorin" is only suitable for Installation Type no. 1. The option "Something Else" is the option we use here. So select Something Else → click continue → disk partitioning step will show → follow next step.

Step 6. Make Disk Partitions and Bootloader

In this step, we will make disk partitions required by Zorin OS into your computer's storage. As mentioned, you may install Zorin OS into internal or external storage, either BIOS-MBR or UEFI-GPT, and we gives example of the external one with UEFI-GPT. 

  4. Place The Bootloader
  5. Begin The Installation
  6. For BIOS-MBR Installation
  7. For For Dualboot Installation

1. Create EFI System Partition: 

We select free space under our blank USB (32GB) → click Add → change Size into 200 → change Use as into EFI SYSTEM PARTITION → click OK → an EFI System Partition successfully created by size 200MB and fat32 filesystem.


2. Create SWAP Partition:

We select free space remaining → click Add → change Size into 1000 → change Use as into SWAP → click OK → a SWAP partition successfully created by 1000MB (1GB) size.

3. Create ROOT Partition: 

We select free space remaining → click Add → do not change the size (about 30GB) → change Use as into EXT2 Filesystem → change Mount Point into slash character ( / ) → click OK → a ROOT partition successfully created.

4. Place the bootloader:

In this example, our blank USB address is /dev/sdc, and accordingly we place the bootloader also in /dev/sdc. If your installation destination is /dev/sda instead, then accordingly place the bootloader into /dev/sda too. 

5. Begin the installation: 

We click INSTALL NOW → a summary of installation will open before we start the actual installation → read the summary carefully and click Go Back to fix any mistake, if any, otherwise click Continue to start the actual installation → follow the next step.

6. For BIOS-MBR Installation: 

If your computer is not UEFI-GPT, but a BIOS-MBR instead, then do the above procedures but do not create EFI System Partition and follow the next step. 


7. For Dualboot Installation:

If your computer has an existing operating system, mostly Microsoft Windows, you should install Zorin OS in a separate partition in the same disk, or, install it into an external disk. If you followed procedures above successfully, you did a dualboot already and follow the next step.

Step 7. Final Preparations

  1. Select a Timezone
  2. Create Username and Password
  3. Wait for the process to finish


1. Select a timezone:

The installer will ask for the user's country and region → select a country e.g. here we selected Asia/Jakarta as we live in west Indonesia → continue to username creation.

2. Create Username and Password:

The installer will ask for creating username and password → create your username → create your password → create your computer's name → select automatic login if you want Windows-like experience, otherwise don't change → continue to wait for the process.


3. Wait for the process to finish:

The installer will perform the actual system installation and we should wait for several minutes. In our experience, this could take up to about 30 minutes. You can have a cup of coffee or chit-chatting with family while this process taking place.

Step 8. Finish

Once installed successfully, Zorin OS will notify you 'Installation Complete, Installation has finished' on screen. When this happens:

  1. Click restart now
  2. Plug off the bootable medium USB when notified
  3. Wait for your computer to restart.
  4. You see Zorin OS installed and is ready to use.

(The result is Zorin OS 16 Core installed to a computer with a USB drive storage)


This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.