Friday, May 20, 2011

USB Boot Disk Edition #4 – Using the Windows USB DVD Download Tool

The Windows USB DVD Download Tool from Microsoft is an incredibly useful piece of 2011-05-20 14h22_01 software. This tool formats a USB drive (must be 4GB or higher capacity) and makes it bootable so that you can install Windows 7, or Windows Vista, or Windows Server 2008 (and Windows Server 2008 R2) from the USB drive.

But this is not the only magic of this tool. Using the Windows USB DVD Download tool, any WinPE based image can be made into a bootable USB stick! This includes:
Windows Vista
Windows 7
Windows Server 2008
Windows Server 2008 R2
Custom Microsoft Deployment Toolkit image (built via Media)
ERD Commander 6.0
ERD Commander 6.5
and other custom WinPE images!

Here is a step-by-step example…. I have an ERD Commander 6.5 ISO that I built using the Microsoft Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset (MSDaRT) on my Windows 7 computer.

  1. Create an ISO of your WinPE based image and save it to a folder on your computer.
  2. Insert a USB flash drive, 4GB or larger capacity, into the computer.
  3. Install the Windows USB DVD Download Tool and run the program.
  4. Simply follow the wizard from here!