Create UEFI or Legacy Bootable USB Drive for Windows 10 Setup

January 14th, 2016 by Admin Leave a reply »

New Windows 10 computers use UEFI firmware instead of the traditional BIOS. As you probably noticed when using a MBR-partitioned Windows installation USB drive on a new Windows 10 PC, UEFI will not recognize it as a boot media. UEFI-based computer can only boot from GPT-partitioned USB drive. Luckily, for backward compatibility most of the UEFI systems can also be configured to disable UEFI secure boot and instead revert to legacy BIOS boot mode. In this tutorial we’ll explain how you can easily create a UEFI or legacy bootable USB drive for Windows 10 Setup.

Requirements:

  • A USB drive (a microSD, SD card or memory stick) with the minimum capacity 4 GB
  • USB creation tool ISO2Disc
  • Windows 10 ISO image, which can be downloaded from Microsoft’s website using its Media Creation Tool

How to Create UEFI or Legacy Bootable USB Drive for Windows 10 Setup

If you have the Windows 10 ISO image on your PC, you can choose to make a Windows 10 bootable USB drive with UEFI or legacy bootloader. 64-bit UEFI PC can only boot 64-bit version of Windows 10, while 32-bit UEFI PC can boot 32-bit OS only. So if you want to install Windows 10 with UEFI mode, you have to download a correct version of Windows 10 ISO image.

Before get started, make sure you backup all important files stored in your USB drive. The process of creating a bootable USB drive will erase all data and re-partition your USB drive.

  1. Insert the USB drive into the USB port of your computer.
  2. Launch the ISO2Disc program. Click on Browse to select the Windows 10 ISO file.
  3. Now you have two options: make a bootable CD or USB drive. We’re explaining how to create a Windows 10 USB installer, so click on “Burn to USB Flash Drive” and select the drive letter of your USB disk from the list.
  4. Choose the partition style that is suitable for your target computer. If you want to install Windows 10 in UEFI mode on UEFI-based PC, choose the “GPT (required for UEFI boot)” option.

    iso2disc-uefi

    Otherwise choose “MBR (for legacy BIOS / CSM boot)” for BIOS-based PC, or UEFI computer running in legacy BIOS/CSM mode.

    iso2disc-legacy

  5. Click on Start Burn. It will now create a Windows 10 USB installer. After creating, you’ll find out that a UEFI bootable USB drive was formatted as FAT32 because NTFS is not supported for external boot media under UEFI.

Of course, there are also some other USB creation tools available on the net, such as Rufus. It also allows you to create UEFI or legacy bootable USB installation drive from Windows 10 ISO image.

rufus-uefi