TechNet Wiki Pick for the Week: How to Deploy Windows 7 from a USB Drive

ninja - lego Each week I will be selecting an article from the TechNet Wiki.  I will be looking for articles I think are interesting and relevant to the issues around us.  Windows 7 deployment conversations are at an all time high right now.  With the Office 2010 launch just around the corner, the air cover will get deafening. 

With that in mind, I decided to select an article about deploying Windows 7 via a USB stick.  Here’s an excerpt from the beginning of the article.  It isn’t the most comprehensive article on the subject.  It doesn’t provide all of the possible ways to do the deployment.  That’s why I selected the article.  It’s ripe for improvement.  Hint: take a look at the WAIK or the MDT.

“It is possible to copy Windows 7 images to a USB flash drive and install Windows 7 onto a PC from it. This also applies to Server 2008 R2.

The simplest method is to copy the DVD files or extract an official ISO. It is also possible to use the Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) to customize an image and deploy this via USB drive.

End users could use Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool. Please ensure that the USB flash drive has a minimum capacity of 4GB.”

The remainder of the article is presented in full at

Challenge:  There are other ways to create a USB stick that allows you to install Windows 7 from it.  Update the article on how to deploy either the x86 or x64 versions of Windows 7 from the same USB stick.  Now that’s kewl.  That’s the Wiki Ninja way.

Comments (4)

  1. Jordan says:

    Couldn’t you just append the 64-bit install images into the default install.wim and change the name and put x64 on the end to differentiate?

    Seems that would be the easiest method.

  2. Keith Combs says:

    You can’t have two architectures in the same .WIM.

    You think I’m going to give you that easy of a problem?  Evil grin.

  3. Jordan says:

    This isn’t fair, Keith.

    You see, deployment really interests me and now you have piqued my curiosity, but I have work to do all day and probably can’t find time to test a few theories on this.

    Shame. 😉

  4. Keith Combs says:

    If you don’t know the answer, no worries.  Don’t spend a lot of time on it. Someone else knows the answer and hopefully they will come along and fill in the blank.

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