How to Install Ubuntu on Rooted Transformer Prime!

Want to run Ubuntu Linux on your rooted Transformer Prime?

Well, I just had to since the Transformer Prime comes with world’s first quad-core processor and indeed, it’s running fine on my new tablet.

The results?

It does run much faster in shell (than Galaxy Tab 10.1) but running Gnome via VNC has its limits, quad-core doesn’t seem to help at all for that.  But people who just want Ubuntu running alongside Android (without breaking it) and run Ubuntu apps in the background such as an Nginx web server and whatnot, this could be a great way.

Again, shell seems to run faster than ever (quad-core does help here)  so the next step would be trying to run Linux applications such as a web server, use it as a spare Linux box to compile your Android kernels, and whatnot.  This is actually good news though, Ubuntu does run faster, just VNC is slow.

For those of you who need such features, I do recommend installing Ubuntu.  For others who want to use Ubuntu as a web browsing device, I’d say just stick with your Android browser/OS.

Here’s how to install Ubuntu on rooted Transformer Prime:

Before we begin, make sure you’ve rooted your Transformer Prime and installed Busybox.  If you used our rooting method on, you should be ready to rock.

Step 1. Download and unzip to a folder called ubuntu.  Copy that whole folder to the root directory of your Transformer Prime’s internal storage.


Step 2. Download Terminal Emulator off the Market (it’s free) and open.

Step 3. Type each of the following lines and hit Enter.


cd /sdcard/ubuntu

You only have to enter the following line the first time you run ubuntu. (skip otherwise)


Step 4. Next type:


to enter Ubuntu shell.

Step 5. Type the following to run a custom script that will start the SSH server (so you can SSH to it) and XTightVNC (so you can VNC to it):



Step 6. Install AndroidVNC App from the Market (free app) and set the Nickname (to anything you want), Password to “123123″, Address to “″, and Port to “5901″.

Step 7. You should be connected to the Ubuntu running on your Transformer Prime.

Final Thoughts

VNC makes the GUI on Ubuntu much slower than it should.  And even if we ran Ubuntu natively, it would lag a bit unless we had full driver support from Ubuntu.

BUT, Ubuntu runs pretty darn fast in shell.  And for most people who are trying to use Ubuntu for something other than everyday web browsing, it will run fairly fast.

Next, I will try to do some tests like run some web servers or maybe even compile some Android kernels on it.   Maybe you can figure out some cool hacks to do on Ubuntu, have fun!


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