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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Install Windows 8 from USB Pen Drive

With the release of the Windows 8 Developer Preview, my curiosity could not let me wait and I rushed to install it right then. But not having an optical drive on my netbook could hinder my installation and hence I had to come up with this alternative of installing it via a pen drive. And to my surprise, when I tried to make a Windows 8 bootable pen drive using the  Microsoft’s very own Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool.

System Requirements for Windows 8 are:
  • 1 Gigahertz or faster 32-bit or 64-bit processor
  • 1 Gigabyte of RAM for 32-bit, 2 Gigabytes of RAM for 64-bit minimum
  • 16 Gigabyte hard drive for 32-bit systems, 20 Gigabyte for 64-bit systems
  • Direct X 9 graphics card

The prerequisits for the installation are as follows:
  • Firstly, you need to download the Microsoft Windows 8 Developer Preview Image from here.
  • Next, you need to have with your self the  Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool, which can be downloaded from here.
  • You need an USB pen drive with at least four Gigabytes of free space. 
With both the softwares downloaded we are now ready to make our own bootable pen drive with Windows 8. Though it does require few tweaks other than making the pen drive bootable, you can follow the steps as given below:
Formating the Pen Drive
  • Firstly, we need to format the pen drive to the FAT32 file system. This can be done by connecting the pen drive to the computer, right-clicking its drive icon and selecting Format from the drop down menu. The Format window pops up where you need to make sure that Fat32 is the selected file system. Other details need not be changed.
  • Once this is done, open the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool.
  • Then just select the Windows 8 ISO when asked to pick an ISO image from the computer.
  • Next, select to copy the contents to an USB drive. The program will copy all files to the drive and make that drive bootable at the same time.
  •  Once this is done, restart your PC, get into the BIOS by pressing F8/F12 as per your manufacturer and goto the Boot Configuration section and enable the USB Booting as well as make USB Booting primary in the booting preference.
  • Save the settings and exit the BIOS.
  • On restart, the computer should now automatically boot through the pen drive and begin the installation.

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