Needing to Create a Bootable Windows USB?


I don’t generally put stuff about Windows on ehre because, well, we are a Linux / Unix group. But, in doing Computer repair work, and knowing that sometimes there’s simply not another option (at least for the time being) for a client except to use WIndows, it’s handy to have access to the tools to get a client up and running again.

I recently had a client call with a failing hard drive. I verified that it was indeed failing, and ordered a new one. In the meantime, I used linux and some cool tools to backup some of their files that I could recover.

Most distros come with NTFS-3G installed already, but if your preferred distro doesn’t then it’s a worth-while add on if you do any kind of work with Windows disks.

The other tool I needed was one to burn the Windows 7 Pro .iso to a USB stick. I normally use Etcher ( a free and open source tool available for Windows, Mac, and Linux ) to burn my .iso files with no issues at all. But when I tried to burn the downloaded Windows 7 Professional, Etcher notified me that Windows (for whatever unknown reason ) needs som especial sauce to make it bootable.

It suggested a great tool that was very easy to use.

WoeUSB, available on GitHub is also a simple open source command line interface tool that will burn the .iso file to a USB drive and make the Windows USB stick bootable.

WoeUSB, once installed, is super simple. I didn’t mind using the whole usb for this, so I just did a simple command.

sudo woeusb --device <Windows.iso file name> /dev/<usb drive identifier>

Enter your sudo password, and BOOM! It took about 15 mintues, and was ready to go.