Create a Bootable USB Drive (Pendrive)

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This FAQ will show you how to you to create a bootable USB drive to install Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows 8 and Windows 10.

This sort of drive is especially useful for mini laptops that don't come with a disc reader, and it enables you to finish the download process slightly more quickly.

For this process, you will need the your Windows disc ISO, a USB stick of about 4 GB, and a program called Windows DVD Tool, which you can download here.

Create a Bootable USB Drive for Windows 10

Start by connecting the USB drive to your PC, and open Disk Management by right-clicking Start > Disk Management.

Now, you will need to format the partition. To do this, right-click the USB drive partition, and select Format. Choose the FAT32 file system to be able to startup either BIOS-based or UEFI-based PCs. Finally, set the partition as active by right-clicking the USB drive partition and clicking Mark Partition as Active.

N.B. If the Mark Partition as Active option isn't available, you can use diskpart to select the partition and mark it active manually.

Now, use File Explorer to copy and paste the contents of the Windows product DVD onto the USB flash drive.

Next, connect the USB flash drive to a new PC, turn on the device, and press the key that opens the boot-device selection menu for the computer (i.e. Esc/F10/F12 keys). Select the option that boots the PC from the USB flash drive, then, follow the instructions to install Windows.

Create a Bootable USB Pendrive for Windows 7

The following method only applies to Windows 7. Start up the software from the shortcut on your desktop, and click Browse. In the window that opens, navigate to the folder where you have saved your ISO file, select it, then click Open > Next > USB device. Select your USB drive from the drop-down menu, and click Next. The program will then get to work on formatting your USB drive.

Create a Bootable USB Pendrive for Windows 7 and Vista

The following method applies to both Windows 7 and Vista. Before beginning, plug in your USB drive and save its contents because the key will be formatted. Now, open the Command prompt, and type Run > CMD. Then, type the following commands: DISKPART > List disk > Select disk [your USB key disc number] > Clean > Create partition primary > Active > Format fs=fat32 quick > Assign (to assign a letter to your USB drive) > Exit (to exit diskpart) > Exit (to exit the Command prompt).

Make a Bootable USB Drive for Windows 7 and Vista

The following method also works for both Windows 7 and Vista. Copy the files from the original DVD. Simply copy the Windows DVD content onto your USB stick. Insert the Windows DVD into your drive, and plug in your USB drive. Go to My Computer, select your CD/DVD drive, and right-click on Explore. You have now finished, thanks to the Bootsect utility, which allows you to make disks bootable automatically, present on the Windows DVD.

N.B. If you want to install a 64-bit version of Windows 7, you will need to perform the following operations on a 64-bit version of Windows XP or Vista. Open the Command prompt (cmd), and enter the command: x: \ boot \ bootsect / nt60 x:, replacing x with the letter of your USB key. Press the Enter key.
Jean-François Pillou

Jean-François Pillou - Founder of CCM
Better known as Jeff, Jean-François Pillou is the founder of He is also CEO of CCM Benchmark and digital director at the Figaro Group.

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