No Root File System Is Defined Error [100% Solved]

Sometimes when you try to install Ubuntu on your system, you may encounter the error message, “No root file is defined.” This error message may pop up when you try to install Ubuntu using a Windows partition (FAT32 or FAT).  It may also occur because a valid Linux Partition has not been created. 

Nonetheless, you can clear this error message by performing a few operations. This guide will explain the “No Root File System Is Defined” Error message to help you fix it easily.

What Causes this No Root File System Is Defined Error?

No root file is defined error message appears on your screen while installing an Ubuntu or other Linux distributions. It may be due to the following reasons:

  • You tried to install Ubuntu using a Windows partition (FAT or FAT32) 
  • A valid Linux Partition may not have been created.
  • A Linux partition could exist, but you have NOT defined the root partition (“/”)

How to Fix the “No Root File System Is Defined” Error

If you want to fix this error, you can do it by following the guide below. This guide will allow you to continue your Ubuntu Linux installation.  

Solution 1 – Create a Linux Partition and Assign a Root Partition

Sometimes creating a Linux partition and assigning a root partition may be the only solution you need to conquer this error. You can smoothly do it by going through the below-given steps.

  • Step 1: Select a free partition on the Installation type page, then click on the + sign to add a partition. The create partition will now be created after you must have clicked on the + sign.
  • Step 2: Now, on the Create partition window, configure the following:
  • The default should be the full size of the partition on the Size field. You can now enter a value here in MB.
  • Step 3: Then, you will have to select the type of partition. It could be a Primary or Logical partition.
  • Step 4: Choose the Beginning of space or End of space on the Location for the new partition.
  • Step 5: Then, you will need to choose a file system.
  • Step 6: Choose a Mount point. The Mount point drop-down will then show some options: Once you have finished, click on OK.

Solution 2 – Delete Existing Windows Partition

If you have received the “No Root File System Is Defined” Error message, it is because you have chosen a FAT or FAT32 file system, then you will need to delete it. 

When you delete the partition, it will now appear as a free partition. At this point, you may use the steps in the previous section to re-create the partition.

You can follow the steps listed below to delete a partition.

  • Step 1: To delete a partition, right-click on it and click on Delete. But you can also click on  Change if you want to change the file system to a Linux file system.
  • Step 2: Once you click on Change, an option s going to the lad and pop up on your screen.
  • Step 3: Then, to change the file system to a Linux file system, click the Use as drop-down, select a file system, and click on OK.

Solution 3 – Define a Root Partition

This error message may still pop up if you have a partition but did not define a root (/) partition. No partition will have the / as mount point if there is no root mount point. In this case, you may fix this error with the following steps below.  

  • Step 1: You will have to Right-click on the partition you wish to use as root and select Change. You can also double-click on the partition.
  • Step 2: When the Edit partition option opens, beside Mount point, click on the drop-down 
  • Step 3: Select /.and click on Ok.

How Do I Find Root Files on my System?

Some users have been unable to locate root files on their system. So, I will show you how to access the root directory. All you need to do is go through the guide below.

How to access the content of Root directory in Mac OS X

Mac does not show you the Root directory in Desktop or Finder by default. However, there are many ways to view it. I will show you how to see the root directory and hidden directories within the root directory.

Solution 1 – Showing Macintosh HD in Finder and Desktop 

If you are using Mac, the root directory can also be referred to as Macintosh HD, as this will show you the root directory files and folders. By default, you will not find it in desktop and Finder as most of the users do not need to access the system files and folders. However, you may change the settings in Finder Preferences to show it in the Finder sidebar and as an icon on the desktop. 

To do this: 

  • Step 1: Open Finder
  • Step 2: Go to Finder Preferences from the top finder menu.
  • Step 3: Check the Hard disks option in the General tab. This will show the Mac HD on the desktop. 

If you want to show the Mac HD in the Finder sidebar, follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Open Finder 
  • Step 2: Go to Finder Preferences from the top finder menu.
  • Step 3: Go to the Sidebar tab and check the Hard disk sub-option listed under Devices. It will make the Macintosh Hd visible in the finder sidebar. 

Method 2 – Go to Folder option in Finder.

You can also access the content of the Root directory in Mac OS X by going to the Folder option in Finder. This opens up a dialog window where you can type the path, and it would open up the content of the given path in Finder. You can use this option to access the root directory. You only need to type the / in path field and click on Go.

To open this, 

  • Step 1: Open Finder
  • Step 2: In the Finder menu, under the Go tab, click on Go to Folder.
  • Step 3: This will open up this dialog box. Type / and click on Go.

Method 3 – Using the command line 

You can also view the root directory from the command line. To do this: Open terminal:

Step 1: Press Command + Space, type terminal, and click on return.

Step 2: Type the following command in the terminal and click on the return button. 

open /

Make sure that you include the space between open and /.

How to show hidden files and subdirectories in the root directory

By default, the root directory will not show you the directories like /usr, /bin, /etc, etc. To make them visible, you need to show the hidden files.

Step 1: Open the terminal and type the following command.

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles -bool TRUE;killall Finder

Step 2: Click on the return button. 

How To Find The System Root Directory in Windows

To locate the system root directory in Windows, follow the steps below.

  • Step 1: Press and hold the Windows key, then press the letter ‘R.’ (You can also click on start->run… to get the same dialog box.)
  • Step 2: Enter the word “cmd” in the program prompt, as shown, and click on OK.
  • Step 3: A command window should appear. Enter the command “set systemroot” at the prompt, and hit the enter button on your keyboard. The system will display the system root. (The example is from Windows 2000, but the same procedure works for Windows XP through Windows 7.)

To install Linux, you need to follow these steps:

Ensure that your computer meets the following system requirements:

A USB port or DVD drive on your computer

2 GHz dual-core processor

25 gigabytes of hard drive space

2 gigabytes of RAM (system memory)


Step 1: You need to create an installer by placing the Ubuntu ISO file on a disc or flash drive.

Step 2: Download the Ubuntu Linux ISO file by clicking here. Scroll down and click on Download to the right of your preferred version.

Step 3: Burn the ISO file to a DVD. You can also use a flash drive, but you will need to format it for either MS-DOS (FAT) (Mac) or FAT32 (Windows) and then use UNetBootin or Rufus (recommended) to make the flash drive recognizable by your computer’s operating system.

Step 4: Create a partition section off a determined part of your hard drive to allow that part to function as a separate hard drive.

Step 5: Ensure that your DVD or flash drive is inserted into your computer. Once you are sure that the installer is connected and you have performed the rest of the steps in this section, you can proceed to install Ubuntu Linux on your Windows or Mac computer.


The error message “No root file is defined” can occur while installing Ubuntu on your system. It could be a result of you trying to install Ubuntu using a Windows partition (FAT32 or FAT).  Sometimes creating a Linux partition and assigning a root partition may be the only solution you need to fix it. I hope that the information contained in this guide was useful in tackling this problem.