Installing Pop!_OS in OEM Mode

How to configure Pop!_OS to run setup on first boot, like a brand new System76 PC.

  1. Create and boot Pop!_OS installation media as normal.
  2. Perform a clean install, but do not restart when finished.
    • The display name, username, and password can be set to anything.
    • Disable encryption, which is pointless at this stage.
  3. Mount the recovery partition (usually partition 2). At the root of the recovery partition, locate recovery.conf. In it, set OEM_MODE=1, then save and exit.
    • GNOME Disks (“Disks”) is the easiest way to identify and mount partitions.
  4. Mount the EFI system partition (usually partition 1). Relative to the root of the EFI partition:
    1. Navigate to loader/entries/ and copy the filename without extension of the recovery entry (Recovery-XXXX-XXXX).
    2. Edit loader/loader.conf by replacing Pop_OS-current with the copied text. It should read default Recovery-XXXX-XXXX. Save and exit.
  5. Shut down the computer and remove the Pop!_OS installation media.
  6. (Optional) Perform a test boot to ensure the setup launches.