OEM Installation [How-To]

  5 years ago

Are you spreading the joy of Linux Mint? Leave a solid impression on the end user - install like an OEM.

As of Linux Mint 18, the OEM installer is included with every ISO.

Press a key during the countdown when booting your Live DVD/USB installation media to show the menu. If you've had to use Compatibility mode to overcome driver issues (blank screen, can't load the Live Session, etc), then you are probably familiar with this screen.

Here also is the option for OEM Install. It says it is for manufacturers, but don't let that scare you. Here's how it works:

  1. It goes directly to the installer. Proceed as normal, choosing to use the entire disk, encrypt, use LVM, or do something else. For the sake of simplicity I always name the batch "oem", name the temp user "oem", and use "oem" as the password. This account is automatically removed in step 3.
  2. The system reboots and goes right to the desktop. Here you have a chance to make system-wide changes. Take this time to install video/wifi drivers, apply system updates and add or remove software. I usually install Google Chrome, and sometimes TeamViewer, update kernel.

    Minor changes are not preserved, although we can make default preferences/settings permanent by using /etc/skel/ ... we're not going to cover that in this post.
  3. There is an icon on the desktop to ready the system for the final end user. Double click it, you get a popup indicating all is ready. Power down the system and give the computer to the final end user.

And there you have it!

End user boots the system and the computer walks them through the first-boot sequence, setting up the computer name, their name and username including password, choosing to encrypt their home folder, etc. They feel like they purchased the computer from a store.

Fun Fact - You can press Quit to exit the OEM Installer and reach a functioning desktop. Double click the Install icon to launch the installer again.

Fun Fact - You can reboot the computer as many times as needed, and it will stay in OEM Edit mode until you run the Prepare For Shipping.