What You’ll Need
The steps described on this page assume you have Windows installation media and access to a Windows technician PC. If you're looking for an easy, automated way to create a bootable USB Windows installation drive, see:. Windows installation media. This could be an installation .ISO or DVD.
How to Make a Bootable Windows 10 USB Drive
Way 1. Use Windows 10 Media Creation Tool
USB flash drive with at least 5GB free space. This drive will be formatted, so make sure it doesn't have any important files on it. Technician PC - Windows PC that you'll use to format the USB flash drive.
Destination PC - A PC that you'll install Windows on. Connect the USB flash drive to your technician PC. Open Disk Management: Right-click on Start and choose Disk Management.
Format the partition: Right-click the USB drive partition and choose Format. Select the FAT32 file system to be able to boot either BIOS-based or UEFI-based PCs.
FAT32 has a file size limit of 4GB If your WIM image is larger than 4 GB, see If your Windows image is larger than 4GB below.
Set the partition as active: Right-click the USB drive partition and click Mark Partition as Active. If Mark Partition as Active isn't available, you can instead use diskpart to select the partition and mark it active.
Use File Explorer to copy and paste the entire contents of the Windows product DVD or ISO to the USB flash drive. Optional: add an unattend file to automate the installation process.
For more information, see Automate Windows Setup. Connect the USB flash drive to a new PC. Turn on the PC and press the key that opens the boot-device selection menu for the computer, such as the Esc/F10/F12 keys.
Select the option that boots the PC from the USB flash drive. Windows Setup starts. Follow the instructions to install Windows.
Way 2. Use Rufus
Remove the USB flash drive. Copy everything except the Windows image file (sources\install.wim) to the USB drive (either drag and drop, or use this command, where D: is the mounted ISO and E: is the USB flash drive.).
Split the Windows image file into smaller files, and put the smaller files onto the USB drive:. Windows Setup automatically installs from this file, so long as you name it install.swm.
Installing Windows 10 from a USB drive beats installing it with a DVD any day of the week. Here’s what you need to make your own bootable Windows 10 installer—and how to do it.
We’ll be using Microsoft’s recommended method to make a bootable Windows 10 USB drive. The Windows Media Creation Tool, which you can download for free.
An eight-gigabyte flash drive. An internet connection. RELATED:Why You Need to Own an External SSD.
To make a bootable Windows 10 USB drive, begin by downloading the Media Creation tool from Microsoft’s Download Windows 10 website. Click “Download Tool Now” on the page.
Wait for the file to finish downloading in your browser. Then hit Ctrl+j to open your browser’s downloads — a menu listing your downloads should appear.
- Click “MediaCreationTool21H2.exe” in the list.
- (You can also launch this file from your downloads folder.).
- Click “Accept” in the bottom right-hand corner of the Terms and Conditions page.
- Select “Create Installation Media” and then click “Next.”.
Way 3. Use ISO Burner Software
You should leave the default settings alone if you don’t have a specific need to install a different version of Windows 10. Then, click “Next.”. Select “USB Flash Drive” and click “Next.”. Select the USB drive you want to use, then click “Next.” The Media Creation Tool will download Windows 10 and create a bootable USB drive.
The download is several gigabytes in size, so it could take a while if you’ve got slower internet. Once it is done downloading, click “Finish.”.