Windows 10 Create Bootable USB

Now that Windows 10 is available for download, many of you might be planning to install Microsoft’s new desktop operating system on your computer. There are plenty of reasons to install Windows, and different editions to choose from. You can automatically upgrade to Windows 10 or you can make a bootable disk to install Windows 10 on one or more computers in a hurry.

The official Windows 10 media creation tool from Microsoft is now available for creating a bootable version of the operating system on a USB flash drive, to allow for a fresh installation of Microsoft’s latest OS on a PC. We’re going to take a step-by-step look at how to go about this process.

You can choose to make a Windows 10 bootable USB disk or DVD, though the USB offers some advantages like faster read/write speeds. You are also likely to have a USB drive lying around, or your computer may not have a DVD drive, in which case the decision is already made for you.

Make sure that the USB or DVD (if rewritable) you pick to be your Windows 10 bootable media has no important data on it, because this process will format the drive, which means you will lose everything on it. Also make sure that the drive is of minimum 4GB capacity, as the process requires 3GB of space. With that in mind, here’s is the list of steps you need to follow to make a bootable Windows 10 drive:

  1. Download Windows 10 media creation tool. Here are links to download the Windows 10 media creation tool for 32-bit (x86) and 64-bit(x64) Windows respectively. To find out which type of Windows you are running, go to Start, type Control panel, select System and security, and then, under System, look at the value for System type, or check this step by step guide by Microsoft.
  2. Once Media creation tool is installed, launch the application. When asked What do you want to do? select Create installation media for another PC, and click Next.

    Windows 10 Create Bootable USB
  3. On the next screen, select your preferred Language and Architecture as determined in Step 1. Also choose Edition as explained below and click Next.

    • If you have Windows 7 Starter, Windows 7 Home Basic, Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 8.1 with Bing, or Windows 10 Home, choose Windows 10 Home as Edition.
    • If you have Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 8 Pro, Windows 8.1 Pro, Windows 8 Professional, Windows 8.1 Professional with Media Centre, or Windows 10 Pro, choose Windows 10 Pro as Edition.
    • If you have Windows 8 Single Language, Windows 8.1 Single Language, or Windows 8 Single Language with Bing, choose Windows 10 Home Single Language as Edition.
    • If you have Windows 8 Chinese Language Edition, Windows 8.1 Chinese Language Edition, or Windows 8 Chinese Language Edition with Bing, choose Windows 10 Home China as Edition.
    Windows 10 Bootable USB Drive
  4. If you are creating a bootable Windows 10 USB disk, select USB flash drive and click Next to follow the rest of the steps. A reminder once again you will lose whatever data is there in the drive you select.
Windows 10 Create Bootable USB

If you want to create a bootable Windows 10 USB DVD, select ISO file. Make sure you have ISO file of the Windows 10 version you selected in step 3 handy. ISO files are basically images of the setup files, and the Windows 10 ISO files are available from Microsoft.

Once Windows 10 media creation tool has finished doing its job, you should have a Windows 10 bootable USB disk/ DVD drive, depending upon the option you chose.

If you have problems with any of the above steps, you try using the Windows USB/DVD Tool, which was designed for Windows 7, but handles Windows 10 just fine. You can use this guide in case you need any assistance with that, just use Windows 10 ISO files instead.

Create Bootable USB Windows 10 Manualy

If you don’t want to use any software, there’s another way of creating a bootable USB drive, but that’s a bit trickier. Here’s how to do it:

  1. First, make sure your USB drive is plugged in
  2. Search and open Command Prompt as an administrator
  3. Next, you’ll have to open the disk management utility using CMD (Command Prompt) – to do that, type in disk part and hit enter
  4. After that, you will have to display the connected disks that are available – to do that, type in list disk and hit enter
  5. Then, you’ll need to select your USB drive – to do that, type select disk # and hit enter – you’ll have to replace the # with your disk number
  6. Next, you’ll have to clean the USB drive – to do that, type clean and hit enter
  7. Then you’ll need to create a bootable partition – type in create partition primary and hit enter
  8. You will now need to select the partition that you just created. To do that, type in select partition 1.
  9. After that, type active and hit enter
  10. Next, you’ll need to format the USB drive – just type in format fs=fat32 and hit enter
  11. You’ll now need to assign your USB drive a letter, to do that, just type in assign
  12. Lastly, copy all the Windows 10 files and paste it inside the USB drive. (You can copy the files by extracting an ISO or copy it from a Windows 10 disk).

That’s it! You have just manually created a Windows 10 bootable USB drive and it’s ready to install Windows 10 on your device.

Creating a bootable USB drive is pretty easy, to be honest. I’d recommend following the easy way of creating the bootable USB drive if you’re not an expert – however, if you’re an expert, just follow the hard way of creating the bootable USB drive and avoid using any type of software.