How to Run Linux on Android Devices using “Limbo PC Emulator”


Just like Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10 and  Mac OS X, Linux is a best-known and most- used the open-source operating system. An operating system is a software that manages all of the hardware resources associated with your desktop or laptop. The operating system manages the communication between your software and your hardware. Without the operating system, the software will not function well.

Linux has been around since the mid to the 90s, and it has reached a user-base that enlarges industries and continents. Actually, Linux is everywhere. It is in your phones, cars, and refrigerators etc. It runs in most of the Internet, the supercomputers making scientific breakthroughs, and also in the world’s stock exchanges. But before Linux became the platform to run a desktop, servers, and embedded systems across the world, it was one of the most reliable and secure operating systems available.

You can do a lot in Android running smartphones/tablets. You can convert them into virtual machine running platform, Apache, MySQL, PHP server and run web-based applications. There is an app available in the Google Play Store called Limbo PC Emulator. It is a QEMU emulator designed for Android platform. It is available free to download and it can be used for both commercial and non-commercial purposes.

Requirements to Install Linux OS:

  • Android phone
  • Limbo PC Emulator
  • DSL(Damn Small Linux) Linux OS

Here some instructions are given below to run Linux OS on your smartphone/tablet

Step 1: First you have to download ISO image of Damn Small Linux from the website Linux OS is about 50 MB in size.

Step 2: Then you have to plug in and mount your Android smartphone/tablet as a USB mass storage device and then copy the ISO image to the location of your choice.

Step 3: Download Limbo PC Emulator app from the Google Play Store and install it to your device.

Step 4: Tap to Load Machine which is the first option after you open the emulator, and enter the name of your virtual machine (I entered as Testing Machine). Then tap to architecture and choose (*86) and in Machine type option select (q35).

Step 5: After this, you can select different CPU models and RAM size option. For my phone, I choose a memory size of 800 MB and CPU model to Coreduo mode and mainly it depends on OS. I am Using ISO image so assign it to CD-ROM option and create a hard disk space for the installation at Hard Disk A option and also set Boot from device option to CD-ROM.

Step 6: In Sound card configuration option select all and leave as it is to other options.

Step 7: Now tap to start (play button) option which was seen at the beginning of app.

Step 8: Now your OS is ready to boot and a screen will appear to show it up. Double tap to install HD as a Debian option to install the Linux.

Step 9:  After this, the installation process of your Linux beings, wait for a couple of minutes (the performance and installation speed depends upon the configuration of your smartphone/tablet).

Step 10:  Finally you have your Linux desktop to your Android smartphone/tablet.

Here are some screenshots of installing process of Linux:

This is a very useful app to the Linux users who want to run Linux on smartphone/tablet. Enjoy using Linux.

What are your thoughts on it?