Modern computers support booting from an external USB drive, in most cases the installation is much faster and the bonus is you have a nice portable usb stick which will never get scratched or damaged.
You will need:
- PC running Windows XP/Vista/7/8
- Windows 7, 32/64-bit (depending on the system) installation disk
- USB drive with at least 8GB of free storage
Preparing the USB drive:
Please note all commands are executed with the return/enter key.
- Open command prompt as administrator - Click Start > All Programs > Accessories
- Right click on Command Prompt and select Run as administrator.
- With the command line interface now open, run diskpart utility by typing diskpart at the command prompt then press Enter.
- Locate your USB drive disk number by executing list disk which returns a list of disk drives found, make sure the correct disk is selected during the following procedure.
Command promt example:
Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7600] Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved. C:\Windows\system32>diskpart Microsoft DiskPart version 6.1.7600 Copyright (C) 1999-2008 Microsoft Corporation. On computer: USER1-PC DISKPART> list disk Disk ### Status Size Free Dyn Gpt -------- ------------- ------- ------- --- --- Disk 0 Online 465 GB 1024 KB Disk 1 Online 8 GB 8 GB DISKPART>
Make sure the correct disk is selected before running the following commands:
The following procedure wipes all data from disk 1..
select disk 1 clean create partition primary select partition 1 active
Formatting will take some time, depending on the capacity of the USB disk
format fs=NTFS assign exit
The disk now contains a clean active partition formatted with the NTFS and is ready to be made bootable.
Make the USB drive bootable:
Insert Windows 7 setup disk into the DVD Rom drive.
While still at the command prompt navigate to the windows installation files on the DVD Rom by running the following commands:
Where d: is the drive letter of the DVD Rom drive:
Where e: is the drive letter of the USB drive run:
bootsect /nt60 e:
and exit from the command prompt.
Copy Windows files:
Finally copy all the files from the DVD rom drive and paste to the ROOT USB drive partition.
You are now ready to install Windows 7 from USB flash drive.