On the issue of creating bootable flash drives, there is always a lot of controversy and questions: which utilities are better, where to put some check marks, the faster to write, etc. In general, the topic is as always relevant :). That is why, in this article I want to consider in detail the issue of creating a bootable USB flash drive with OS Windows 10 UEFI (since everyone is familiar with B IOS on new computers replaced by a new 'alternative' to UEFI – which does not always see the installation flash drives created using the 'old' technology).
Important! Such a bootable flash drive is needed not only for installation Windows, but also for its recovery. If you do not have such a flash drive (and on new computers and laptops, usually, there is a pre-installed OS Windows, and no installation discs are included in the kit), then I highly recommend that you play it safe and create it in advance. Otherwise, one day, when Windows does not load, you will have to look for and ask for help from a 'friend' …
So let's get started …
What do you need:
- Bootable ISO image with OS Windows 10: I don't know how it is now, but at one time such an image could be downloaded without any problems even from the official website Microsoft. In general, even now, there is no big problem finding a bootable image … By the way, one important point: Windows you need to take x64 (for more details about the bit depth: https://pcpro100.info/kak-uznat-razryadnost -sistemyi-windows-7-8-32-ili-64-bita-x32-x64-x86 /);
- USB stick: preferably at least 4 GB (I would generally recommend at least 8 GB!). The fact is that not every ISO image can be written to a 4 GB flash drive, it is quite possible that you will have to try several versions. It would also be nice to add (copy) drivers to the USB flash drive: it is very convenient, after installing the OS, immediately install drivers for your PC (and for this, the extra 4 GB will be useful);
- Specialist. utility for writing bootable flash drives: I recommend choosing WinSetupFromUSB (you can download it on the official website: http://www.winsetupfromusb.com/downloads/).
Figure: 1. Prepared flash drive for recording OS (without a hint of advertising :)).
A small free program that is indispensable for preparing installation flash drives. Allows you to create flash drives with a variety of OS Windows: 2000, XP, 2003, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10, 2008 Server, 1012 Server, etc. (it is also worth noting that the program itself works in any of these OS). Another thing worth noting is that this is 'not picky' – i.e. the program works with almost any ISO image, with most flash drives (including cheap Chinese ones), does not freeze for every reason and without, and quickly enough writes files from the image to the media.
Another important plus: the program does not need to be installed, it is enough to extract, run and write (this is what we will do now) …
The process of creating a bootable USB drive Windows 10
1) After you download the program – just extract the contents into a folder (by the way, the program archive is self-unpacking, you just need to run it).
2) Next, run the executable file of the program (i.e. 'WinSetupFromUSB_1-7_x64.exe') as administrator: to do this, right-click on it and select 'Run as administrator' in the context menu (see Fig. 2) .
Figure: 2. Run as administrator.
3) Then you need to insert the USB flash drive into the USB port and start setting the program parameters.
Important! Copy all important data from a flash drive to other media. In the process of writing an OS to it Windows 10 – all data from it will be deleted!
Note! There is no need to specially prepare a USB flash drive, the WinSetupFromUSB program will do everything it needs.
What parameters to set:
- Choose the correct USB flash drive for recording (be guided by the name and size of the flash drive, if you have several connected to your PC). Also check the following boxes (as in Fig. 3 below): Auto format it with FBinst, align, copy BPB, FAT 32 (Important! The file system must be FAT 32!);
- Next, specify the ISO image with the OS Windows 10, which will be written to the USB flash drive (line 'Windows Vista / 7/8/10 …');
- Press the 'GO' button.
Figure: 3. WinFromSetupUSB settings: Windows 10 UEFI
4) Next, the program will ask you several times if you really want to format the USB flash drive and write boot records to it – just agree.
Figure: 4. Warning. I must agree …
5) Actually, then WinSetupFromUSB will start to 'work' with the USB flash drive. The recording time can vary greatly: from a minute to 20-30 minutes. Depends on the speed of your flash drive, on the recorded image, on PC boot, etc. At this time, by the way, it is better not to run resource-intensive applications (for example, games or video editors) on the computer.
If the USB stick was recorded normally and there were no errors, at the end you will see a window with the words 'Job done ' (work completed, see Fig. 5).
Figure: 5. The flash drive is ready! Job Done
If there is no such window, most likely, errors occurred during the recording process (and most likely, unnecessary problems will arise when installing from such media. I recommend trying to restart the recording process) …
USB flash drive test (installation attempt)
What is the best way to test the functionality of a device or program? That's right, it's best in 'combat', not in various tests …
So, I connected the USB flash drive to the laptop and opened the Boot Menu when booting (this is a special menu for choosing the media from which to boot. Depending on the manufacturer of the equipment, the buttons for entering are different everywhere!).
Buttons for entering the BOOT MENU – https://pcpro100.info/boot-menu/
In the Boot Menu I selected the created USB flash drive ('UEFI: Toshiba …', see Fig. 6, sorry for the quality of the photo :)) and pressed Enter …
Figure: 6. Checking the flash drive: Boot Menu on the laptop.
Next, a standard welcome window Windows 10 opened with a choice of language. Therefore, in the next step, you can proceed with the installation or recovery Windows.
Figure: 7. The flash drive is working: the installation has started Windows 10.
In my articles, I also recommended a couple of other recording utilities – UltraISO and Rufus. If WinSetupFromUSB doesn't suit you, you can try them too. By the way, you can learn how to use Rufus and create a bootable UEFI USB flash drive for installation on a disk with GPT markup from this article: https://pcpro100.info/kak-sozdat-zagruzochnuyu-uefi-fleshku/.
That's all for me. All the best!