How to Build a Windows To Go USB Drive


Windows To Go is a new feature of Windows 8 that allows a full featured version of Windows to boot from a USB drive. 

To begin you will need the following:

Creating the Windows 8 To Go USB Device:

  1. Run Diskpart
  2. List Disk
  3. Select Disk 1 (Replace 1 with number reflecting your USB Drive)
  4. Clean 
  5. Create partition primary

  6. Active

  7. format fs=ntfs quick

  8. Assign

Exit Diskpart by typing Exit.

  1. Now double click the Windows 8 ISO you downloaded to mount it in Windows 8.  Browse to the ISO files in Windows Explorer and copy sourcesinstall.wim to the same folder as you copied Imagex.exe.

Identify the drive letter assigned to your USB drive by Windows Explorer and run the following command from the folder that contains Imagex.exe and install.wim:

  1. imagex.exe /apply install.wim 1 d:
  2. Replace d with the drive letter of your USB drive.)

  3. Once the image has applied you need to setup the boot record on the USB Drive. At the administrative level command prompt run:

    bcdboot.exe d:windows /s d: /f ALL

    (Replace d with the drive letter of your USB drive.)

After the command has completed running you are ready to use your new Windows To Go USB device.

Author: Jas Dhaliwal

Jas Dhaliwal is a highly experienced International Social Media Strategist. He specializes in building and engaging with social communities across the web. Born and bred in London, he is passionate about technology and social anthropology. You can follow @Jas on Twitter