How to Install Windows 7 from USB Flash Drive Without Any Software

Installing Windows 7 from USB drive without using any software is the fastest way as far as only the installation of operating system is concerned. Generally, Windows 7 installation media is larger than 2 GB in size which needs a DVD to fit. So, if your computer does not have any optical DVD reader, you would face problem when installing Windows 7. In that scenario, the USB drive plays an significant role. To install Windows 7 from USB drive, you just need a USB drive having more than 3 GB of volume.
You might be reading several tutorials on “How to Install Windows 7 from USB Drive”. But, most of them, do not work properly. However, there are various ways to do it, here, I’m going to discuss how to install Windows 7 from USB drive without any software.
The first part describes how to prepare the USB stick through the command prompt for the installation of Windows 7.
Also read: Install Windows XP from USB Drive.
Requirements for preparing Windows 7 Installation USB disk:

  1. The first thing that you need is the Windows 7 ISO file. You can download it from the web or copy it from the Windows 7 installer DVD. In the second case, you have to copy the disk content in your USB drive using a computer which can read the DVD.
  2. A USB disk / flash disk with a memory greater than 3 GB.
  3. A computer running with Windows 7 or Windows Vista or later versions like Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and so on.

Advantage: It takes only 10-15 minutes while you install Windows 7 on your PC using a flash drive.

How to Prepare USB Drive to Install Windows 7 from USB

Preparing USB drive to install Windows 7 from USB or Flash Drive is pretty easy. Here, we’ve discussed a step-by-step guide for the installation of Windows 7 using a flash drive or any USB drive.
First Step: Insert the USB into the available port of your computer and wait for a while until the system detects it (if you are using the USB stick first time on your computer).
Second Step: Open the command prompt with ‘Administrator’ privilege (procedure: type ‘cmd’ at the start menu search box then right-click on it and choose ‘Run as Administrator’).
Third Step: Now, in the command prompt, type “diskpart” and hit the ‘Enter’ key. This should change the command base from your system drive to DISKPART. Then, run the following commands one-by-one.
1. list disk: This displays all the disks at your computer. Generally, there should be two disks in the list; one is your hard disk (Disk 0) and the another one is the USB disk (Disk 1).
2. select disk 1 (be careful*)
3. clean
4. create partition primary
5. select partition 1
6. active
7. format fs=ntfs : You can also format the USB drive in Fat32 i.e FAT File System. You can also add an optional parameter like quick at the end of this syntax for a quick format).
8. assign
9. exit
Install Windows 7 from USB Drive
* Note: The set of commands assume that the USB drive is addressed as “disk 1”. So, check it carefully by doing a list by the command “list disk” before you clean it.
Now, the USB drive is ready to use for the Windows 7 installation purpose.
One drawback of this technique is that if you are applying this tutorial on Windows XP i.e. if you are using the command prompt in XP then it won’t work. The “list disk” command does not show the USB disk in the list. So, use Windows Vista or Windows 7 to prepare the installation media. Once you prepare the USB flash drive, follow the next steps to install Windows 7 from USB.

Installing Windows 7 from the USB Stick

Fourth Step: To get started, copy the content of the Windows 7 installer DVD into that USB disk.
In case of ISO file, just extract the ISO file in it. Once copied, you can boot your computer from the USB drive. Generally, your computer won’t boot from USB Drive. You need a small change in the BIOS settings to install Windows 7 from it. Setup the BIOS as follows:
Open the BIOS setup window (press F2 or F10 when starting your computer) and change the boot option according to the followings:

  • Make the USB hard disk as the first boot option.
  • Save the changes and exit from the BIOS setup window.

Your computer should automatically reboot and the installation wizard should appear. Now, you can follow the onscreen instructions to complete the installation with Windows 7 at your computer.
You should keep in mind that the whole configuration to the flash drive to Install Windows 7 from USB can only be done with a computer which is installed with either Windows 7 or Windows Vista. If  you do not have Windows 7 or later version in your PC, you can follow our another article Create multiboot USB drive to install both Windows XP and Windows 7 which is a platform independent technique.
Till now, I have discussed about installation of Windows 7 using Flash drive without any third-party software.  The process is somehow lengthy and time consuming. Fortunately, there is few trusted software available in market to create a bootable Windows 7 installation USB.
But, before that, you need to create a Windows 7 ISO image either from Windows 7 installation DVD or you can download Windows 7 ISO file direct from Microsoft.

Use Windows USB/DVD Download Tool to Create Windows 7 Installation USB

Limitation: Exactly same operating system is required to your PC which ISO image you will use to create bootable USB for Windows installation.
1: Download Windows/DVD Tool on your computer. And run it.
Install Windows 7 From USB Flash Drive
2: Choose the Windows 7 ISO file. Then click “Open”.
3: Click “Next” when you are back on the step 1 screen.
4: Click “USB Device” on the next step i.e. choose media type screen.
5: Choose USB drive or any external drive where you want to put Windows 7 installation files. Blue refresh button will be useful to you if you plug the USB drive later to your PC.
6: Click the “Begin Copying” button and wait to create a bootable Windows 7 installation USB device. At first this tool formats the USB Drive then it copies the installation file and makes it ready for installation.
I have already mentioned thart this tool has some disadvantages while creating a Windows 7 installation USB flash drive. According to Microsoft, this tool only supports Windows 7 ISO image. But some geeks claim that they can successfully manage to create bootable USB for Windows 8 and 8.1 as well.

All-in-one Tool to Create Windows ISO image and Windows 7 USB Installer

gBurner is a tool which allows you create bootable USB or Flash drive so that you can install Windows 7 to your PC directly from any external USB device. Let see how to make use of it.
Requirements:

  • Windows 7 Installation Dvd or ISO file.
  • gBurner Software.
  • A Windows PC.

How to Prepare Bootable USB to Install Windows 7 from USB Disk Using gBurner

  1. At first, download and install gBurner to your PC and run the application.
  2. Now, in the left pane of the gBurner software, you will find ‘copy’ option and just select ‘Make Image’ option from there. This option lets you create a standard ISO image directly from a Windows installation DVD.
  3. Choose the disk and output location and click ‘OK’. It will take some time to create a Windows ISO image file. (Note: You can bypass the above steps if you already have a Windows ISO image file.)
  4. Now, go to ‘Tools’ section and select ‘Write USB’ option from there.Prepare Windows 7 USB InstallerYou need to run gBurner as administrator to access this option.
  5. Insert a flash drive or any USB drive to your PC. Now, choose the input image file location from your PC. And Choose destination USB drive from there.
  6. Choose the writing method as ‘Auto’.
  7. Finally, choose ‘OK’ button to write Windows ISO image to USB flash drive.

The process would take 10-15 minutes. And, after the total completion, the USB drive will be ready and you will be able to install Windows 7 from that USB flash drive.
See the video tutorial that describes “How to Install Windows 7 from USB Drive or a Pen drive”:

Don’t hesitate to write down your queries into the comment section regarding any problem when installing Windows 7 from the USB flash drive. We are happy to help you!

1 COMMENT

  1. Great tutorial man. Thanks for your effort. But what about something more advanced, e.g. multiboot USB drive with Win7, WinXP and some Linux distros without any application, only from command line. Doesn’t matter whether linux or windows command line. Could you prepare some tutorial also for this? I guess it’s a sufficient challange 😉

  2. I have an idea with separate partition for Win7, one partition for WinXP and one partition for Linux distros. But I’m missing some advanced knowledges about windows boot parameters to get it running with grub and/or isolinux. Maybe this could be the way to make it working from linux command line.
    I’m thinking about how to get it together from windows command line but I’m worry about the linux distros loading from within the windows boot manager or another boot manager w/o any other application.

  3. Hello,
    Thank you for the tutorial. I tried wintoflash and didn’t work. I did all steps and now will try the bootup.
    I actualy wanted to ask you why do I have to do this diskpart part. Doesen’t work if I just format the drive with windows expoler thingie and copy the files from the dvd?

  4. @Andrei: Actually a USB device is not bootable by default and a PC needs to reconize the device as bootable first to get into the installation process. That is why the Diskpart part is must. Otherwise Windows won’t be able to detect your device as boot device.
    Feel free to ask any question. Thanks.

  5. I triec this process but after selecting the install now it shows me( A required CD/DVD drive device driver is missing. If you have a driver floppy disk, CD, DVD, or USB flash drive, please insert it now) massage please help me an tell me what to do

  6. I’ve followed this method but aftr changing the priority to boot USB frst, a black screen appears and USB is not being booted even if I wait fr a long time

  7. thanx.
    usb boot is working properly in win7 installed laptop…but not working in xp installed pc,,please say something for the problem

  8. Best way to install windows7 is through ultraiso, just open Win-7
    iso image in ultraiso, from bootable tab select “write disk image”
    in next screen select your usb drive and finally click write.
    It is 100% working.

  9. Hey I’m using this method on a new computer I just built, but I have a problem.
    When I boot up the new computer, the windows install starts but stops soon after and says I’m missing the required drivers. I’m assuming it needs something to recognize the USB stick? But I can’t seem to find a driver anywhere as everyone just says, “just plug it in and it will work.”
    But actually since the install is starting, it is already using the flash drive right??
    I don’t have a cd/dvd rom drive. Could it be hard drive?

  10. Hi there,
    I tried this steps on my PC(USB drive 8 GB, RAM 2GB, Motherboard Intel)but the installation get stuck at the point after windows icon that we usually see after the files get copied.
    On one instance I could reach the language selection option but after selecting the language to english and hitting the Ok tab/key it didn’t proceed further.
    What could be the issue and what else can be done ?

  11. Thanks for valuable effort for this. One more thing i ask from you, Can you please guide how to create universal windows 7 in one boots i.e. window 7 Home Basic, Ultimate,pro,business all in one.
    Hope this topic you will list in your next challenge.
    Thanks again
    Usaid

  12. i want to install window 7 from usb but when i start computer for installation it attempt booting from usb and gives error.kindly tell me what i can do in this case?

  13. I have done the above procedure.like lalit’s comment above .. I too get stuck at the point where the file copying is over and the Windows logo comes.

  14. I have a computer that was completely dumped..even without Windows 7 ..I have the product key but the dos will not let me type in anything..trying to type in diskpart and start download for Windows 7 for flash drive..will not let me..no booting…I NEED HELP 🙁

  15. when computer is to start
    NTLDR IS missing
    press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart
    how to install tje windows 7 using pen drive how to boot the system give me the solution

  16. Thank you for this. I used the information to walk a friend of mine through reinstalling his Windows 7. Saved me a lot of time and headache. visited few sites but your steps works for me like a charm

  17. sir I have boot window DVD but mistake for I do format. and pc formated but window not start he say disk and drive error . what I do

  18. What’s up,I check your blog named “Install Windows 7 from USB Drive Without Any Software” like every week.Your writing style is witty, keep it up! And you can look our website about love spells.

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