How to run Windows 8 from USB drive

Windows 8 Operating System packed with lot of features and yet it manages to consume the conservative amount of resources and uses less amount of disk space to install itself including the metro UI. This let you to take advantage to run Windows 8 from the USB drive. Here we are going to explain how to runs the Windows 8 operating system independently on any PC which doesn’t installed currently.

For this you need few pre-requirements,

  • USB drive with at least 32 GB storage space.
  • Windows 8 ISO file.
  • Windows Automated Installation Kit
  • PC running on Windows 7.

How to run Windows 8 from USB drive

  • Open command prompt as an administrator on your PC and then paste below command and hit Enter.


  • Now enter LIST DISK command and this will display the list of drives on your PC. Check for the USB drive in the list.
  • Now enter the SELECT DISK X command, replace X with the number at far left of listing of your USB drive.
  • Now copy and paste the below commands
  • Now quick format the drive using below command
    format fs=ntfs quick
  • Once the partition is created then you need to set it as active partition using
  • Finally enter command

That’s it you have formatted the USB stick for the Windows 8 installation.

How to install

  • Mount Windows 8 ISO image or insert the Windows 8 disc into drive. Let it be either disc or USB stick whatever you have.
  • Now search through the DVD or the ISO image and find install.wim file. If you search it through the search bar on upper right corner it could be found easily.
  • Copy this file to place on your drive.
  • You need to install the latest version of .NET framework, you can download it from the Microsoft official website.
  • Download and install Automated Installation Kit from here.
  • Enter the following command in the command line
    imagex.exe /mount path x:

You need to replace path in above command with the path which you have copied install.wim and replace X with USB drive letter.

  • Now copy and paste the below command in the command line
    imagex.exe /apply install.wim 1 x:
    bcdboot.exe x:windows /s x: /f ALL
  • Above command will allow the PC to create the boot configuration for USB drive.

That’s it, set your USB drive in the BIOS as the primary boot device and start rig up. For the first time you boot from USB drive it might ask for product key. If you have product key enter it and enjoy.

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