How to Install Linux Mint 21 on Desktop/Laptop Computer with Bootable USB Stick

In this article, we will examine how to set up Linux Mint 21 from scratch using a bootable USB flash drive on a desktop or laptop computer.

Installing Linux Mint 21 on Desktop/Laptop Computer

How to Install Linux Mint on PC using USB Flash Memory

Linux Mint is one of the most preferred Linux distributions with Ubuntu source code. This distribution is available to users with the Cinnamon, Mate, and Xfce desktop environments. The most used and preferred desktop environment is the Cinnamon desktop environment.

Like other Linux distributions, Mint allows you to test the system before installation when you boot your computer with the ISO file. Thus, you can gain experience without installing this distribution on your PC, and when you decide to use this system, you can easily install it on your physical computer.

Before starting the installation, you need to download the ISO image file from the official website. You will see that there are 3 different versions on the download webpage.

  • Cinnamon: It is the most advanced and full-featured desktop environment.
  • MATE: It is a more stable and faster desktop environment.
  • Xfce: It is the lightest and most stable desktop environment.

You can start installing the Mint system on your PC using the installation media containing a Linux desktop environment of your choice.

The latest version of the Linux Mint operating system with the codename Una is 21. This distribution with both 32-Bit and 64-Bit architecture includes Cinnamon 5.4.2, Linux Kernel 5.15, and Ubuntu 22.04 package base. Also, version 21 will be supported until 2027.

What’s New?

  • New Upgrade Tool
  • New Bluetooth App
  • Improved Thumbnail Support
  • New Wallpapers
  • Integrated Timeshift Application
  • WebP Image Support
  • Improvements for Stable Operation of Applications
  • Improvements in Dual Boot
  • AppImage support
  • Cinnamon 5.4.2 and Linux Kernel 5.15
  • Improvements for Sticky Notes
  • Enhanced Process Monitor

How to Download and Set Up Linux Mint 21 (Vanessa) Step by Step

You can download Mint ISO installation media to your computer from both the official website and other sources. However, for a more reliable system, we recommend downloading it from the official website. In addition, do not forget to verify Mint ISO after downloading the image file.

   Step 1

To download the ISO file, visit the Mint website and click the Download button in the section indicating the latest version. Then, when you are redirected to the website, click Download from the links below your preferred desktop environment.

Cinnamon Edition

   Step 2

Start downloading the ISO file by clicking on one of the download servers closest to you according to the location you live in.

Downloading ISO File from USA Servers

   Step 3

After downloading the image file to your computer, you need to prepare a bootable USB stick using the Rufus program. So, download the Rufus program from here to create a bootable installation media.

After downloading the current version of the Rufus program, run it and then click the SELECT button and select the Mint ISO image from the pop-up window.

Burning Mint ISO File to USB Flash Drive

   Step 4

If you want to install a UEFI-supported system, select GPT from the Partition Scheme and configure the Target System setting as UEFI.

Finally, click START to burn the UEFI-supported ISO file to your USB stick.

Starting GPT UEFI Bootable Installation Media Creation

   Step 5

Rufus recommends using ISO Image Mode before burning the ISO image. Click OK to continue with the suggested option to continue with image printing, and then click OK again to confirm erasing all contents of your USB.

Next, wait for the Mint system files to be copied to your USB. When the copying process is complete, find the Boot Device setting in your computer’s BIOS settings and select your USB memory as the first boot media, save the settings and restart your computer.

Selecting ISO Image Mode and Confirming Changes to Disk

   Step 6

After your computer restarts, you will see the Boot screen as below. To start the system in the GNU GRUB menu, press Enter on the Start Linux Mint 21 Cinnamon 64-bit option.

Start Linux Mint 21 Cinnamon 64-bit

   Step 7

Wait while Mint’s initial setup wizard opens.

Starting Linux System

   Step 8

After booting your computer from USB, at this stage, you can make some tests without installing the system or test the current version using programs.

Double-click Install Linux Mint to install the current version on your laptop/desktop PC.

Installing the Linux System

   Step 9

Select the system language you want to use and click the Continue button.

Choosing the System Display Language

   Step 10

After selecting the keyboard layout and language you want to use in the Keyboard Layout window, click Continue.

Choosing the Keyboard Layout

   Step 11

The cinnamon desktop environment includes many Multimedia tools, so to render some websites properly or to be able to play some video formats properly, tick Install multimedia codecs and then click Continue.

Download Multimedia Codecs

   Step 12

To cleanly install Mint on your computer, select Erase Disk and Install Linux Mint and click the Install Now button. Then click Continue to confirm the changes to your disk.

NOTE: Do not forget that at this stage, if you are going to install the Linux distribution on an existing Windows 10, you need to create an empty partition on your disk!

Erase Disk and Install Mint

   Step 13

Continue by selecting the region you live in.

Location Selection

   Step 14

After creating your name, system user name, computer name, and password for your system click Continue.

Typing User and Computer Name and Creating Root Password

   Step 15

Wait while Mint is copying system files to your disk. This process will take about 10 minutes, depending on your computer’s specifications.

Copying Linux System Files

   Step 16

After the installation is complete, restart your computer by clicking the Restart Now button.

Restarting Linux Computer

   Step 17

After your PC restarts, if you encounter a warning like the image below, remove your USB installation media and press Enter.

Press Enter to Remove Installation Media

   Step 18

After restarting your computer, type your password on the login screen and click the right arrow.

Login to Mint

   Step 19

After the installation is completed without any problems, you will be greeted with the welcome screen on the desktop. In this window, you can change various settings on your system and browse the support forum.

Closing the Welcome Window

   Step 20

After installing Linux Mint on your PC, right-click on the desktop and then open the terminal. You can check your system codename and version by executing the “lsb_release -a” command in the terminal.

lsb_release -a

Finding System Version


Installing Old Versions

Mint Version
YouTube Video
20.x (20.3)
21 (NEW)


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