Windows 7 Bootable USB using Ubuntu
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As a lot of people asked me “How do I create a bootable usb drive with Windows 7 using Ubuntu?”, I decided to make this easy step-by-step tutorial to help you. After many tests, I concluded that the most effective and simple solution is to use UNetbootin software. The main advantage is that this software is available for both Linux and Windows operating systems. So let’s start!
What you need:
- A USB Flash Drive (4GB or larger)
- .ISO file with Windows 7
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Now we have to format our USB Flash Drive to NTFS. To do that we need to install Gparted (GParted is a friendly user free partition editor for graphically managing your disk partitions). To install it in Ubuntu we will use the next command:
sudo apt-get install gparted
Also, in order to format a drive to NTFS, we need to install NTFS-3g using the next command:
sudo apt-get install ntfs-3g
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Now that we have installed all the applications we need, let’s format the USB Flash Drive as NTFS. Open Gparted and go to System >> Administration >> GParted Partition Editor. From the following drop-down list, select your USB Flash Drive.
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Due to my research, I’ve found that the newer versions of Unetbootin may cause some problems by selecting an USB Drive to format in NTFS way (!Don’t try to format it to FAT because Windows installation surely will fail). The version that I’ve already tested and it clearly works it’s Unetbootin-linux-494. (!Don’t try to install other version.)
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Now let’s open the Unetbootin file. To do it right, first we have to allow it to be executed as a program. What we have to do is to right-click on it >> select “Properties” >> select “Permissions” tab >> CHECK “Allow executing file as a program”. Now double-click the Unetbootin to open it.
The main reason that we choose to use Unetbootin-linux-494 is that you still can choose the option “Show all Drivers“, otherwise, on the newer versions Unetbootin’s developers had removed this very useful option. Now let’s open Unetbootin double-click on its icon. It will open a window with a lot of options. First of all, be sure that you had selected “Diskimage”. The next step is to browse for your ISO file, by clicking on the next three dots, selecting the Windows 7 file, saved on your computer.
After that, you have to select the USB Drive, by ticking “Show all drivers” option. By clicking on the “Drive:”, it will appear a drop-down list. Now select your USB Drive. (! In my case, as you can see, the USB Drive it’s called “/dev/sbd1”, but it’s not a rule. Obviously, your USB Drive may have a different name.) You are now very close to use your new Bootable Windows 7 USB Drive. All you have to do is to click the “OK” button and wait some minutes (it depends by your computer’s performance the time you have to wait – better computer, less time to wait).
That was all you had to do. Now you can use your new Bootable Windows 7 USB drive to install on every computer that suport booting from an USB Drive.