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HOW TO: Create a Bootable USB Flash Drive of Microsoft Windows Server 2012

With the announcement of Microsoft Windows Server 2012 release in a few days time, I thought I would write an article on HOW TO: Create a  Bootable USB Flash Drive of Microsoft Windows Server 2012 I have seen many internet articles on how to create a bootable copy of Windows Server, that seem very long winded and involved. This is the “Andy-method”, which is quick and easy, with free software provided by Microsoft.

This can help speed up a server installation, and does not require a blank DVD to be written with the DVD ISO that has been downloaded from Microsoft Technet or MSDN. The same procedure can be used for Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2.

Prerequisites

  • Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool
  • 4GB USB Flash or Thumb Drive (minimum)
1

Download the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool

Using an Internet browser of your choosing download the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool from HERE. Although this software product is designed to work with Windows 7, I have also tested with Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows Server 2012 to create a bootable USB flash drives of Windows Server 2008 R2 and 2012.

2

Install the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool

Double Click the Windows7-USB-DVD-tool.exe in your download folder and proceed to install the software product.

3

Start the Windows 7 USB DVD Download Tool application

Start the Windows 7 USB DVD Download Tool application by double clicking the following icon on your Desktop

  • Windows 7 USB DVD Download Tool icon

Windows 7 USB DVD Download Tool icon

4

Choose the ISO file you have downloaded

The following screen will appear, browse to the location of the Windows Server 2012 ISO file you have downloaded from Microsoft.

  • Choose ISO file

Choose ISO file

Select Next to continue,
  • ISO selected

ISO selected

5

Choose media type

Ensure the USB flash or thumb drive is connected to the computer and select USB device.

  • Choose media type

Choose media type

6

Insert USB flash or thumb drive

Select the USB flash or thumb drive you want to prepare as a bootable copy of Windows Server 2012. Please exercise caution when selecting the USB device, the device will be formatted, and all the information will be lost.

  • Insert USB device

Insert USB device

Select Begin copying

7

Creating bootable USB device

Sit back, grab a cup of coffee, whilst the USB flash or thumb drive is formatted, and the files are extracted from the ISO and copied to the flash drive.

  • Formatting….

Formatting....

  • Copying files…1%

Copying files...1%

  • Copying files…51%

Copying files...51%

  • Copying files…99%

Copying files...99%

The process takes approximately 5 minutes to complete for a 3.5GB ISO.

8

Bootable USB device created successfully

  • Status: Backup completed

Status: Backup completed

Safely Remove the USB flash or thumb drive from your computer.

You have successfully created a Windows Server 2012 bootable usb flash drive to install your operating system.

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