I want to create a Windows 10 bootable USB drive (or microSD in USB) through Ubuntu without thirdy party apps.

I tried dd, but it won't work, no boot.

I also tried formatting the device as FAT32 and copying the files, but that does not work anymore as one of the files from the ISO is larger than 4gb.

The answers on How can I create a Windows bootable USB stick using Ubuntu? all use third party apps or make me copy the files, which won't work anymore

  • 3
    Officially the only way to create proprietary Windows installation media is using the proprietary "media creation tool" from Microsoft which only works on (proprietary) Windows. The question you linked contains all the info available for how to do this using Ubuntu
    – Nmath
    Jul 5 at 2:16
  • To boot in UEFI mode, you have to have install files in a FAT32 partition with esp,boot flags. It used to be that you could just extract ISO and have it boot in UEFI only mode. But Microsoft made the .wim file over 4GB and that does not fit on FAT32 partition. The Windows installer automatically splits the .wim file to make it work. Many older instructions are for the older smaller .wim file. askubuntu.com/questions/1274878/… & dedoimedo.com/computers/windows-10-usb-media-linux.html
    – oldfred
    Jul 5 at 3:32
  • 1
    How do you decide if an app is third party? Ubuntu developers did not create dd either. Third party apps make Ubuntu what it is. Jul 5 at 3:42
  • @ArchismanPanigrahi I just meant something in a PPA or downloadable. Things in apt-get should be ok, but the less dependent method would be preferable Jul 5 at 3:45
  • 1
    Did you mean "with only free software". Then change it. Jul 13 at 14:16

A simple 'Do it yourself' method

A rather simple 'Do it yourself' method is described at the following links. You can create Windows install drives that work in UEFI mode as well as in BIOS mode,

This 'Do it yourself' method is for you

  • if you have a Windows iso file that contains a file, install.wim, with a size > 4 GiB, or
  • if you don't like PPAs, or
  • if you want to 'Do it yourself' and understand the details

Implemented in mkusb version 12.5.6 and newer versions

This 'Do it yourself' method is implemented in mkusb-tow and available via mkusb version 12.5.6 (mkusb-dus) and mkusb-plug.

You get/update this new version of mkusb from the mkusb PPA via the following commands

sudo add-apt-repository universe  # this line only for standard Ubuntu

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mkusb/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install mkusb mkusb-plug

sudo apt-get install usb-pack-efi  # only for persistent live drives

To my knowledge there is no way to make the USB bootable natively

There are a lot of great apps that are free, or code one your self

Since this in the ubuntu exchange See if this helps https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/FromUSBStick#Unetbootin


On linux, you can use the dd tool on command line (for more info $ man dd) or the Disks tool to restore a given OS iso to the disk, which by default should be bootable.

For Disks aka gnome-disk-utility, search for the app, it comes preinstalled in most linux distros. Select the disk you want to make bootable (be careful not to select the current main os or any other hard drive that may contain some important stuff). From the top right menu, select Restore Disk Image and select the iso of the os to make bootable.

That should make a bootable with almost no thirdparty apps.

  • 1
    This cloning method that you describe works with most Linux distros, because they are distributed with hybrid iso files. But the current Windows iso files are not hybrid iso files, so this method does not work.
    – sudodus
    Jul 17 at 21:03
  • this does not work with Windows Jul 18 at 1:03

I could understand if my answer is not accepted but :

You should try Ventoy:

  • You install it on your USB key ( few MB )
  • Then you can alsmot any iso ( linux , Windows etc...) on the key
  • And ventoy will let you choose the iso to boot


  • 2
    The question specifically rules out 3rd party apps. Jul 17 at 1:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.