Follow these instructions to create a bootable Clear Linux* OS USB drive. Use an 8GB or larger USB drive. Download either a live image, clear-<version>-live.img.xz or an installer image, clear-<version>-installer.img.xz, from our image download page.

Instructions are also available for other operating systems:

The naming convention of a Clear Linux OS image filename is:

clear-[version number]-[image type].[compression type]
  • The [version number] field specifies the version number.
  • The [image type] field specifies the type of image and its corresponding file format.
  • The [compression type] field specifies the compression type. Two types of compressions are used: GNU* zip (.gz) and XZ (.xz).

Verify the integrity of the Clear Linux OS image

Before you use a downloaded Clear Linux OS image, verify its integrity. This action eliminates the small chance of a corrupted image due to download issues. To support verification, each released Clear Linux OS image has a corresponding SHA512 checksum file designated with the suffix -SHA512SUMS.

  1. Download the corresponding SHA512 checksum file of your Clear Linux OS image.

  2. Start Command Prompt.

  3. Go to the directory with the downloaded image and checksum files.

  4. Get the SHA512 checksum of the image with the command:

    CertUtil -hashfile ./clear-[version number]-[image type].[compression type] sha512
  5. Manually compare the output with the original checksum value shown in the downloaded checksum file and make sure they match.

Decompress the Clear Linux OS image

Released Clear Linux OS images are compressed with either GNU zip (.gz) or XZ (.xz). The compression type depends on the target platform or environment. To decompress the image, follow these steps:

  1. Download and install 7-Zip.

  2. Go to the directory with the downloaded image and right-click it.

  3. From the pop-up menu, select 7-Zip and select Extract Here as shown in Figure 1.

    7-Zip extract file

    Figure 1: Windows 7-Zip extract file.

Burn the Clear Linux OS image onto a USB drive


Burning an image formats the USB drive, thus destroying all existing content. Backup your data before proceeding.

  1. Download the Rufus utility to burn the image onto a USB drive.

  2. Plug in the USB drive and open Rufus.

  3. Click the SELECT button. See Figure 1.

    Rufus utility - Click the SELECT button

    Figure 1: Rufus utility - Click the SELECT button

  4. Find and select the previously extracted Clear Linux OS image file. Then, click the Open button. See Figure 2.

    Rufus utility - Show and select |CL| image file

    Figure 2: Rufus utility - Show and select Clear Linux OS image file

  5. Click the START button. See Figure 3.

    Rufus utility - Click the START button

    Figure 3: Rufus utility - Click START button