Builduntu Install Disc – Android Development OS

UPDATED 04/29/2016 – Builduntu v2 BETA based on Xubuntu 16.04 LTS available! See Downloads

If you prefer a ready-to-go Virtual Machine (ready for Windows, OSX, and Linux) check out BuilduntuVM here!

Builduntu is a custom branch of the Ubuntu operating system, based on my guide for preparing Ubuntu 14.04 to compile Android ROMs from source. It includes everything you need to sync with the repository of your choice (Cyanogenmod, AOKP, AOSP, etc) and start building.

I am not responsible for any loss you may incur on your system/files while trying to install Builduntu. This has been tested and verified working by me (and countless other people) so if you break Windows or your system won’t boot, it’s your fault.

This thread is not the place to ask how to install Linux or Dual Boot!!! These topics are well documented elsewhere and can be easily found in a few seconds on Google.

Thanks to Canonical for Ubuntu, Google for Android and me for figuring this out.

– Xubuntu 14.04 base system
– Installed all necessary packages for compiling (list available in the guide link above)
– Unnecessary junk removed (media players, games etc.)

All you have to do is download the source!

The only requirement is that your machine supports a 64 bit OS. 32 bit systems will not work!


1. Use your favorite image burning software to write the newest Builduntu ISO to a blank DVD. Will not fit on a CD
2. Boot the disc. When the graphical installer starts, click “Install Xubuntu”
3. Follow the on-screen instructions to select language, username, etc. * Note * When setting up partitions, I recommend doing it yourself if you know how. If not, that’s fine, let Ubuntu decide for you.
4. When the installation finishes, reboot and eject the installation media.
5. Sync your repositories:

~ A program called “repo” lets you communicate with git servers and download source code. The next command will install it:

mkdir ~/bin && curl > ~/bin/repo && chmod a+x ~/bin/repo

~ Use nano to edit ~/.bashrc

nano ~/.bashrc

~ At the very bottom (use the Page Down key) paste this code to a new (empty) line:

export PATH=~/bin:$PATH
export USE_CCACHE=1

~ Save it. In nano that would be Ctrl-O and then Enter. Then Ctrl-X to exit back to a prompt. Restart bash:

source ~/.bashrc

~ In the terminal, navigate to where you would like to download the Android source code. The command below will make it in your home folder, but if you have limited space you may want to create it somewhere else. Faster is better, i.e. SSD would be best, USB external is basically unusable.

mkdir ~/android
cd ~/android

~ Set up git and

git config --global "your name"
git config --global ""

~ Now to initialize the repo. Decide the flavor of Android to build, i.e. AOKP, CyanogenMod, AOSP etc.

For the purposes of the tutorial, here’s the command for CyanogenMod 13:

repo init -u git:// -b cm-13.0
repo sync

When that is finished downloading, you’re ready to start compiling ROMs!



builduntu v1.2 ISO


builduntuiso.torrent (4352 downloads )


via MediaFire

builduntuiso.mediafire (5287 downloads )



builduntuiso.mega (2336 downloads )


md5sum: c8276394f3d19229298f88bda2923e12


builduntu v2 BETA ISO


builduntu.v2.iso.torrent (3560 downloads )


via Google Drive (5541 downloads )

md5sum: 7807faceb623bfa7144f0d80dadef111

Let me know how it works for you!

If you appreciate my hard work, feel free to buy me a coconut water (donate). It would be greatly appreciated!


v1.0 - First Release Mar 05 2014
v1.1 - Rebuilt from scratch
v1.2 - 4/20 release - Updated to 14.04 LTS Official
v2.0 - Updated to 16.04 LTS with OpenJDK 8 for Android M


  1. Excellent. Imported into vmplayer and after a long wait to download the source it worked first time. Very quick and easy way into ROM building.

  2. Use a different wed site for us to download from mediafire sucks, no download speed whatsoever. Been downloading this file for 24 hours and haven’t reached 45%. Deleting.

    1. Thanks! I’ll look into it. The surge in interest was unexpected, I’ve been more or less solo-seeding for the last year. I recently transitioned from a free blog to a hosted system, so I’m looking into different options for file distribution.

  3. Hi Nathan, thanks for builduntu. Love it. Syncing AOSP as i write this.

    Used the mediafire download, delivered a steady 1.8MB/s download (Mega needed a extra browser plugin, and the torrent was not going fast enough (100KB/s)).

  4. Hi Nathan! Will this be updated to match the VM version? I would definitely love to recommend this to users completely new to the building experience that don’t want to use the VM version.

    1. Yes, now that I’ve updated and tested the VM. Seems like it gets about 3x the activity (vs the ISO) so it takes priority.

      I’m going to try a new method for customizing the image, stay posted for an update coming soon. Thanks for the positive feedback!

    1. Fixed. Thanks for the heads up! I updated the permalink with BuilduntuVM v1.5 and forgot to update this cross-link.

      I appreciate the support. Feel free to message me if you have any ideas for improvements. I’m always interested to know how people are using the tool, what issues they run into, successes, etc.

      Have a good one!

    1. I’ve been working on a new method of building the disc, but running into some random issues here and there. Much has changed starting with Ubuntu 14.04. Many of the old tools stopped working, and the documentation is haphazard at best.

      I think I’ve almost got it, stay posted this next week or so. Been very busy starting back to university two weeks ago. Thanks for the interest!

        1. I’ll work on an update when the 16.04 Long Term Support edition comes out.

          There have been some quirks with the 15’s, it seems to be a transitional period for Ubuntu in general. The new kernel will provide some definite performance gains.

          Stay tuned! If there is enough interest I may work on a beta release before official.

          1. Nathan,
            Looking forward for the release. Thanks for you work on some of the other things in this site.. Really helped me with starting to build for android.

  5. Is it possible to build lollipop rom on openjdk8??? I want use a virtual box vm which one is more apt for it iso or ova??

    1. I hear it’s possible with mixed results. Depending on what ROM (CM13, AOSP etc) they may have an experimental build flag to enable OpenJDK8 compatibility. Try Google.

      1. V1.2 have jdk7 ??…i want to build a lollipop rom thats why …i saw v1.6 have jdk7 but there is not v1.6 for iso….??..anyway thanks for your quick reply

  6. Thank you very much! Very useful.

    Just two comments:
    1. No need for sudo on nano ~/.bashrc
    2. The repo init command fails because git asks me to set up and

    1. 1. That’s correct, thanks! Made the changes to OP.

      2. I’ll add the directions to setup user name and email.

      I appreciate the support, thanks for the kind words!

  7. Please help. I downloaded builduntu live os but unsable to boot with it. I suppose there is something wrong in burning the iso. It will be helpful if You tell me process of burning the iso in windows or atleast tell me which burning software I should use.

  8. Are these not bootable from USB? I have tried multiple sticks and programs (unetbootin Rufus USB image writer from my Linux install) I just get a “missing operating system” message.

  9. Hello, I’ve recently done the installation of Builduntu on VM as per your instruction! I downloaded the source and It went fine until the next time it dint boot in the VM at all.
    Take a look at this screenshot : and let me know what i can do to fix it please!

  10. Thank you for this seen like orange java stoped support download java 7. But with your distro. I can download java 7. I neeed java 6,7 to build rom. Your distro is okay

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