[RESPONDED] Booting Ubuntu off storage expansion card?

I currently use Windows 11 as my main driver but want to also boot Ubuntu off of an expansion card. As far as I can tell there is no guide for this, but I hear that its pretty easy. But I also hear that you should remove the internal drive so Windows doesn’t throw a fit, which is easy enough.

I guess my main question is that is it as simple as just installing in like you normally would on and drive? Any tips and tricks, or any guides that you can point me to?

Also as a side note I have installed windows just a few times but this will be my first time installing Linux (Ubuntu more specifically), I also am planning on using the 250gb expansion card if it makes any difference.


Eleventh Gen batch 1 user here. My system is installed with windows 10 on the internal drive, and Ubuntu 22.04 lts on a 250 gb expansion card.

Installed Windows first, with a flash drive built from the media creation tool.

Then created a Ubuntu 21.xx installation media on a flash drive, and used that to install Ubuntu on the expansion card. Later did an update in place to 22.04 LTS.

The BIOS boot order is set to boot the expansion drive first, then windows.

Grub on the expansion also allows me to boot windows if I don’t catch it at the Framework start up screen.

I also have the bios set to 10 second delay, making it easier to press F12 for boot order.

Just be careful and pay attention to which drive is which when you run the install.

1 Like

Piss easy.

I bought with Win on the NVMe and installed Ubuntu on a 256 Expansion.

Standard: Download Ubuntu to USB, plug in run, instal to Drive

One caveat here: if you experience random crashes, that’s a known issue with prolonged use of some batches of expansion cards that has no definite fix. Your only solution if you do experience that when booting off of an expansion card will be to get a new card.

See this thread (now closed by support) for the community’s unsuccessful efforts to fix the issue. Keep your finger on the RMA trigger but let us know how it goes, best of luck!

It’s not officially supported, so no official guides from us. You can install Ubuntu to the expansion card, but it’s recommended to simply use a large enough nvme drive to partition out for Ubuntu instead. On a personal level, I have seen countless times where dual-booting goes poorly after a Windows update, so I don’t really suggest it unless you’re prepared for needing to repair your bootloader on a semi-regular basis.

That disclaimer aside and with your understanding that it may or may not go well, you can follow this guide for a general flow.

1 Like

Just a note:

I bought the 11th Gen Feb 2022 with Win 10 installed. Installed Ubuntu 21:10 and have been upgrading both.

Windows 11, version 22H2 and Ubuntu 23.04

Every update has gone with little effort and no upsets.

1 Like

That is great to hear and I want to see this from Windows updates more often. But I am genuinely pleased. My comment was speaking historically, but I do realize it doesn’t affect all of those who dual-boot, but it can happen. :slight_smile:

1 Like

I’ve been using Windows since 1995 and never had a problem their either.
Ubuntu since 2004, with no problem

Maybe I’m a bit of a vanilla user :slight_smile:

Could be. I never dual-booted outside of testing myself (I just don’t use Windows), but yeah, it happens.

For advanced users, it’s annoying but fixable in a few minutes. For newer users (where is usually happens), it’s an issue for sure.

1 Like

Not this again. Could you please explain what you mean by “not officially supported?” The CEO of the company says this is an official use of the expansion card, and ticketed support will respond to issues with booting off of it. If within warranty, they will provide a replacement if the card experiences issues when booting off of it.

I accept your personal opinions on the subject (they’re very valid as you have more experience with Linux than me) but from the outside it can look like that’s overriding the official stance on the subject.

If you’re using “officially supported” to mean that there would be a guide on Framework’s website for how to install to an expansion card, a) I view that as misleading because the average user would look at the statement as “you’re on your own, kid,” not “we just don’t have a step-by-step for it,” and b) it’s the exact same steps as any written guided install save for changing which drive to install to.

Please recognize your own authority as support to dissuade someone from doing something and ensure that your personal opinions don’t interfere with that.

On Linux, you’re welcome to do it, some users have had success with it.

However, we’re not officially supporting it in Linux Support.

It’s a community support endeavor for Linux users.

Being clear, I (and Linux support) will offer best effort support, but make no promises it will be a seamless support experience as we recommend using internal drives and expansion for storage.

That is the official Linux position on the matter. I’m not going to debate this going forward, appreciate the feedback. Thank you.

1 Like