Create Bootable Windows 7 USB Drive

By Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Friday, April 3, 2009

windows74I am sure you don’t want to downlaod and install and run the mammoth Windows 7 yet in your PC. But being a curious techie, you can not leave it unattended either. So what can you do so that both of these hold good? There is a way. You can create a bootable Windows 7 USB or flash drive so that you can test Windows 7 without testing your machine’s performance. You just need a 4GB+ flash drive and Windows 7 installation DVD. Rest I will tell you.

1. Plug in your USB drive

2. Go to Start -> Run, type cmd hit enter. That should bring in the command prompt. (I hope you are running as an adminstrator)

3. Type

list disk

The number of your USB drive will listed. You’ll need this for the next step. I’ll assume that the USB flash drive is disk 3.

4. Now type and execute these steps one by one

select disk 3
create partition primary
select partition 3
format fs=NTFS

That will just to make your disk formatted and ready with partitions.

5.  Insert your Windows Vista / 7 DVD into your drive.

6. Change directory to the DVD’s boot directory where bootsect lives:

cd d:\boot

7. Use bootsect to set the USB as a bootable NTFS drive prepared for a Vista/7 image. I’m assuming that your USB flash drive has been labeled disk G:\ by the computer. So,

bootsect /nt60 g:

You can now close the command prompt window.

8. Now you need to copy the installation DVD to your USB drive. The best way to do it is to use Windows Explorer and that will copy all the files to your USB drive.

9. Now set up your BIOS to boot from USB. and you are done.




Kii lo Delta
November 4, 2010: 11:20 pm

Thank… its work !!!

October 12, 2010: 6:17 am

I am not sure what was so misleading about this article as it did EVERYTHING I expected. I have a HP Elitebook Tablet PC with no CD/DVD drive. This is exactly the information I was on the hunt for!

Thanks for your efforts,

Eastern Shore, MD

July 15, 2010: 10:47 am

Nice article…!!
Learnt something new..!!
CMD rocks!!!
BTW keep up the good work…. :D :D :D

July 7, 2010: 2:42 am

John your an idiot…
no one has been able to boot windows 7 from usb…
your dumb
go bother someone else…
as for author..


May 28, 2010: 2:28 am

This is exactly what I needed. I’m trying to get windows 7 on my netbook which doesn’t have a CD drive so this USB way is perfect! Thanks a lot.

>>P.S. To all you who couldn’t figure out that it is just INSTALLING should screw your brain back in and skim through the artical and figure out what it says to do before actually DOING it and then getting mad at it not working the way you wanted! Seriously guys.


March 9, 2010: 7:53 am

Completely misleading article indeed!

March 7, 2010: 4:52 pm

Completely misleading article!!!!
“You can create a bootable Windows 7 USB or flash drive so that you can test Windows 7 without testing your machine’s performance.”. this create a Win7 USB install drive! you have to install the win7 on your HD any way, the entire first paragraph is entirely off!!! If you don’t know what you are doing, don’t write…

February 9, 2010: 12:43 am

Works great (for installation drive), thanks.

January 13, 2010: 12:53 pm

Yeah, completely misleading article. The title’s misleading and so is the article, itself. Nowhere does it explain that it’s just an installation disc/drive you’re creating. In fact, M$ now provides an app that will create a Win7 USB installer–that is to say, Micro$oft *wants* Win7 to be installed on machines w/o optical drives. They just don’t want Win7 to run *from* USB/flash drives. Yet, this article doesn’t mention any of this.

The point is, this article is essentially useless since it contains instructions on how to do something that can be done automatically by software from Micro$oft.

January 2, 2010: 11:11 am

Thanks man, I didn’t need the instructions, just the commands. I’m actually using this to boot Ubuntu on my netbook.

December 8, 2009: 6:26 pm

Misleading article - you get Win7 installer from usb - not runtime from usb.

November 26, 2009: 9:06 pm

hai i hope that usb bootable win 7 is working and i want known about how to install xp using usb flash disk as bootable, Thanking you friend

Afriza N. Arief
August 5, 2009: 8:53 am

If you want to try out Windows 7 without having to mess up with your current Operating System, You might want to consider using VirtualBox. It requires a lot of memory to work decently.

July 17, 2009: 9:13 pm

the text of the article is very misleading, please do NOT write about something you don’t know… let others handle it

July 13, 2009: 3:56 pm

Then please rewrite the article. It states “Create Bootable Windows 7 USB Drive” not Create Bootable Windows 7 INSTALLATION USB Drive. Your source does and you fail to mention it. Itdoes seem like you are claiming to have a bootable USB drive with win 7 on it. Thats how i got here too.

July 6, 2009: 7:15 pm


Wouldn’t we all.

This procedure creates a bootable USB install disk.

June 13, 2009: 9:11 pm

Will this place the Windows 7 installer on the USB flash drive or an operational copy of Windows 7 on the flash drive.

I di not want to have to install Windows 7 on my laptop. I would like to be able to boot Windows 7 fron the USB flash drive and run it froM there.


Salt Lake City, Utah

May 17, 2009: 3:32 am

I followed these steps and ended up with a bootable USB Windows 7 Install drive, but couldn’t RUN Windows 7 from it. When I booted from it, it tried to install to my Hard Drive.

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