Installing Ubuntu

Intel's Next Unit of Computing (NUC) is a barebone mini personal computer (PC) compatible with many versions of Linux and Windows operating systems.

The early two versions of the NUC released were the DC3217IYE and the DC3217BY. The two kits come in a 4" x 4" UCFF motherboard with core i3-3217U processor at 1.80 GHz clock speed, 3MB cache and integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000. There are two SO-DIMM memory slots supporting upto 8 GB DDR3 1066/1333 MHz RAM each.


For the DC3217BY kit, the I/O ports comprise of a power connector (65 W), an HDMI (1.4a) port, a Thunderbolt (1.1a) port, and three USB 2.0 ports (one located at the front panel). The DC3217IYE kit differs from the former in that it do not have a Thunderbolt port but instead have two HDMI ports and a Gigabit Ethernet port.

The latest generation of NUCs are based on Intel's 6th Generation Skylake Processors. All of its models include

  • Dual-channel DDR4 RAM (2133 MHz, 1.2V SO-DIMM, 32 GB)
  • A Gigabit Ethernet port
  • Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260, upto 867 Mbps
  • M.2 (22x42, 22×80) card supporting PCIe 2.0 (x1, x2 and x4) and SATA 6 Gbit/s
  • SDXC slot with UHS-I support
  • Intel HD Graphics 520
  • 7.1 digital audio (via HDMI MiniDP)
  • Bluetooth 4.1 (dual-mode topology)
  • Intel Wireless Display (Intel WiDi)

A list of various Linux/Windows operating systems supported by an NUC kit can be found under the following link

We pick the Intel® NUC Kit NUC5PPYH for the purpose of this tutorial.

1. Go to Towards the bottom of the page, find the link BIOS and driver updates and open it. Select BIOS from the middle dropdown list. Download the latest .BIOS file, copy it to a USB drive, and plug it into a USB port of the NUC.

During boot, press F2. An Intel® Visual BIOS screen appears. There is a BIOS Version field; click on the Update link on its right.

A small Check for BIOS Updates pop-up appears. Just press No (N). Another window called Choose a .bio file pops up exposing the directory/file structure. Your USB could appear as fs0:\, so expand it and select the copied .BIO file and update it. After completion of update, remove the USB drive.

The other thing to configure while still on the Intel® Visual BIOS screen is to click on the Advanced tab and select the Boot tab. Click the Boot Priority tab and select UEFI Boot.

In the adjacent Boot Configuration tab, choose Linux in the OS Selection field.

2. This step concerns with the creation of a bootable Ubuntu USB drive which can be carried out in many ways on different operating systems. Fedora users generally use Live USB Creator, Ubuntu users use Rufus. As Linux users are usually geeky and can figure their way around, below we give brief instructions on how to create one on Windows.

Download Universal-USB-Installer- Insert a USB drive into one of your computer's USB ports. Next, run the downloaded .exe file. In the first field of the window that appears, select Ubuntu from the drop-down menu. In the second field, click the Browse button and choose the downloaded .iso file. In the third field, choose the inserted USB drive and click the Create button.

3. Plug the USB drive containing Ubuntu installation files into one of your Intel NUC's USB ports and switch it on. At the prompt during boot, press F10, open the boot menu, and select the USB drive.

4. Finish the operating system installation from the USB drive, but do not reboot. Open the terminal. Mount /dev/sda1 at /mnt

				sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt

Create the directory EFI/BOOT in it

				sudo mkdir /mnt/EFI/BOOT

Copy all files and directories inside /mnt/EFI/ubuntu into /mnt/EFI/BOOT

sudo cp /mnt/EFI/ubuntu/* /mnt/EFI/BOOT

Rename the file grubx64.efi inside the /mnt/EFI/BOOT directory to bootx64.efi

sudo mv /mnt/EFI/BOOT/grubx64.efi /mnt/EFI/BOOT/bootx64.efi