How to Make a Bootable USB for Windows 10: A Step-by-Step Guide

Are you looking to install Windows 10 on your computer but don’t have a DVD drive? Don’t worry, you can easily create a bootable USB for Windows 10! In this step-by-step guide, we will walk you through the process of creating a bootable USB using both Windows and Mac operating systems. Whether you want to upgrade your current Windows version or perform a clean installation, this guide will help you get started with ease.

Gathering The Necessary Materials And Tools

When it comes to creating a bootable USB for Windows 10, the first step is to gather all the necessary materials and tools. To ensure a successful process, you will need a few items:

1. A USB flash drive: Make sure you have a USB drive with sufficient storage capacity, preferably 8 GB or more. This will allow you to fit the entire Windows 10 ISO file onto the drive.

2. Windows 10 ISO file: This is the operating system image file that you will copy onto the USB drive. You can download the ISO file directly from the Microsoft website.

3. Computer: You obviously need a working computer to perform this task. Make sure your computer is in good condition and has enough resources to handle the process smoothly.

4. USB creation software: There are several software options available for creating a bootable USB drive for Windows 10, such as Rufus, WinToUSB, or the official Windows USB/DVD Download Tool. Choose one that suits your needs and download it.

By ensuring you have all these materials and tools ready, you’ll be able to proceed smoothly with the creation of a bootable USB for Windows 10.

Choosing The Correct Software For Creating A Bootable USB For Windows 10

When it comes to creating a bootable USB for Windows 10, picking the right software is crucial. There are several options available, each with its own set of features and ease of use.

One popular and reliable software for creating a bootable USB is Rufus. It is widely used and known for its simplicity and efficiency. Rufus supports creating bootable USBs for various operating systems, including Windows 10. Another highly recommended option is the Windows USB/DVD Download Tool, which is an official tool provided by Microsoft. It is straightforward to use and specifically designed for creating bootable USBs for Windows.

Etcher is another excellent choice. It is an open-source software that offers a user-friendly interface and supports creating bootable USBs for Windows, as well as other operating systems. BalenaEtcher is highly regarded for its reliability and ease of use.

Before selecting a software, consider factors such as your familiarity with the program, the compatibility with your computer’s operating system, and the availability of features necessary for creating a bootable USB for Windows 10.

Downloading The Windows 10 ISO File

In this step, we will guide you on how to download the Windows 10 ISO file, which is an essential component for creating a bootable USB.

To begin, visit the official Microsoft website or any trusted source that offers the Windows 10 ISO file. Ensure that you are downloading the correct version of Windows 10, as there may be multiple editions available.

Once you have found the appropriate ISO file, click on the download link provided. The file size may vary, so a stable internet connection is recommended to avoid any interruptions during the download process.

After the ISO file has finished downloading, make sure to verify its integrity by comparing the file’s checksum provided on the download page with a verified checksum. This step ensures that the file has not been corrupted during the download process.

By following these steps, you will have successfully downloaded the Windows 10 ISO file, which will be used in conjunction with the selected software to create your bootable USB drive for installing Windows 10.

Creating The Bootable USB Using The Selected Software

Creating a bootable USB for Windows 10 is a crucial step in preparing a new installation or repairing an existing one. After selecting the appropriate software, it’s time to create the bootable USB. Here’s how to do it:

1. Insert your USB drive into your computer’s USB port. Ensure that the drive is empty, as all data will be erased during the process.

2. Open the selected software (such as Rufus, Windows USB/DVD Download Tool, or UNetbootin) and locate the option to create a bootable USB.

3. Select the Windows 10 ISO file you previously downloaded in the tool and choose the USB drive you want to use.

4. Double-check that the correct USB drive is selected, as selecting the wrong drive could result in data loss on other devices.

5. Customize any advanced settings, such as partition schemes or file allocation sizes, if necessary. However, it’s generally safe to leave these settings at their default values.

6. Click on the “Start” or “Create” button, and the software will begin the process of creating the bootable USB. This may take a few minutes.

7. Once the process is complete, you will see a notification or progress bar indicating the successful creation of the bootable USB.

Remember to safely eject the USB drive from your computer before using it to install or repair Windows 10 on another system.

Configuring The BIOS Settings On Your Computer

Configuring the BIOS settings on your computer is an essential step to ensure successful booting from the USB drive. BIOS stands for Basic Input/Output System, and it is responsible for initializing and controlling the hardware components of your computer. Here’s a step-by-step guide to configure your BIOS settings for booting from a USB drive:

1. Start by restarting your computer. As it boots up, keep an eye out for the key or keys you need to press to access the BIOS settings. It is usually displayed on the screen during the boot process, often along with a message like “Press [key] to enter setup.”

2. Once you know which key to press, restart the computer again if necessary and press the designated key repeatedly to access the BIOS settings.

3. Inside the BIOS settings, navigate to the “Boot” or “Boot Options” section. The exact name may vary depending on your computer’s manufacturer.

4. Look for an option called “Boot Order,” “Boot Sequence,” or “Boot Priority.” Select this option.

5. Change the boot order to prioritize the USB drive. Move the USB drive to the top of the list or use the provided keys to rearrange the boot order.

6. Save the changes and exit the BIOS settings. Usually, you need to press the “F10” key to save and exit.

By configuring the BIOS settings to boot from the USB drive, you ensure that your computer will look for an operating system on the USB drive before attempting to boot from other sources.

Booting From The USB Drive And Installing Windows 10

Once you have successfully created a bootable USB drive using the selected software and configured the BIOS settings on your computer, you are ready to boot from the USB drive and begin the installation process for Windows 10.

To boot from the USB drive, restart your computer and access the boot menu. The key to access the boot menu may vary depending on your computer’s manufacturer, but common keys include F12, Esc, or Del. Consult your computer’s documentation or perform a quick internet search to find the correct key for your specific model.

Once you access the boot menu, select the USB drive as the primary boot device and press Enter. Your computer will then boot from the USB drive, and you will be presented with the Windows 10 installation screen.

Follow the on-screen prompts to select your language preferences, enter your product key if required, and decide whether to perform a clean installation or upgrade from an existing version of Windows.

After making your selections, click “Install Now” and follow the prompts to complete the installation of Windows 10. The process may take some time, but once it is finished, you will have a fresh installation of Windows 10 on your computer.

Troubleshooting Common Issues During The Bootable USB Creation Process

Troubleshooting common issues during the bootable USB creation process is crucial to ensure a smooth and successful installation of Windows 10. This subheading focuses on identifying and resolving potential problems that may arise during the creation of a bootable USB.

In the process of creating a bootable USB for Windows 10, users may encounter issues such as unrecognized USB drives, errors during software installation, or corrupted ISO files. This section aims to provide practical solutions to such problems, offering step-by-step guidelines to overcome these obstacles.

Some of the troubleshooting techniques discussed include ensuring the compatibility of the USB drive and software, verifying the integrity of the downloaded ISO file, and troubleshooting errors during the software installation process. Additionally, this subheading suggests alternative software options or methods to create a bootable USB if the chosen software encounters persistent issues.

By addressing common issues during the bootable USB creation process, readers can troubleshoot problems effectively and enhance their chances of successfully installing Windows 10 using a bootable USB.


1. Can I use any USB drive to make a bootable USB for Windows 10?

Yes, you can use any USB drive with a minimum storage capacity of 8GB. However, it is recommended to use a high-quality USB drive to ensure a smooth installation process.

2. What software do I need to create a bootable USB for Windows 10?

To create a bootable USB for Windows 10, you will need a tool like Rufus or the Windows USB/DVD Download Tool. These tools allow you to copy the Windows 10 installation files onto the USB drive and make it bootable.

3. Can I use a Mac to create a bootable USB for Windows 10?

Yes, you can use a Mac to create a bootable USB for Windows 10. There are several tools available for Mac, such as Boot Camp Assistant or UNetbootin, that allow you to create a bootable USB drive for Windows 10.

4. Is it possible to update an existing bootable USB to the latest version of Windows 10?

Yes, you can update an existing bootable USB to the latest version of Windows 10. You will need to download the latest Windows 10 ISO file from the official Microsoft website and use a tool like Rufus to copy the new installation files onto the USB drive. It is important to note that updating an existing bootable USB may overwrite any existing data on the drive, so make sure to backup any important files beforehand.


In conclusion, creating a bootable USB for Windows 10 is a straightforward process that can be done by following a few simple steps. By using tools like Rufus or the Windows Media Creation Tool, users can easily transfer the Windows 10 installation files onto a USB drive, making it convenient to install the operating system on multiple computers or in case of system crashes. This step-by-step guide ensures that even those without technical expertise can successfully create a bootable USB and enjoy the benefits of Windows 10.

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