Episode

Create Bootable Windows Server 2016 USB Installation Drive Step-by-step

These procedures were written and tested using Windows Server 2016 Technical Preview 5 but should work on any version of Windows Server or Windos Desktop version 8 or above. They should work on prior versions of Windows 10, Winndows 8, Windows Server 2012, Windows 7 and Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 R2. Note: this post DOES NOT use any downloadable .EXE. This is the long way. If you want to create a bootable USB with Windows 10 using the executable, see: Download Windows 10 and Create bootable USB Thumb Drive for Booting to Installation PLUS Data Migration. The USB drive I created with these instructions was used to successfully install Windows Server 2016 TP5 on bare metal with only one internal drive which was wiped during the install.

If you do not have the media, you will need to download. See https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/evalcenter/evaluate-windows-server-technical-preview for the Technical Preview. You could also download from MSDN.MICROSOFT.COM or other subscription service.

1) Double-click the ISO file to mount it (or mount the ISO) and make note of the drive letter. In my case it is drive I:

2) Put in the USB Thumb Drive Key in the computer and make note of the drive letter and the size of the disk. In my case it is D: and 32gb You will likely need at least an 8gb drive as the bits will require 4.9gb.

Attached Drives

  1. You need to run an elevated command prompt. Start | type cmd | Right-click cmd (top of menu) | Run as Administrator (accept the elevation request)

URGENT NOTE: The following commands will completely wipe out your disk without warning so make sure you select the proper disk. I strongly recommend you have a good backup before running. I also recommend you disconnect all external drives to limit possible mistakes.

4) Next you will run Diskpart to prepare the disk for the OS {question mark "?" below should be replaced with the disk number of the drive you are using}

See full blog post at Create Bootable Windows Server 2016 USB Thumb Drive for Installing OS http://itproguru.com/expert/2016/05/create-bootable-windows-server-2016-usb-thumb-drive-for-installing-os/ for commands and detailed steps

5) Now we need to copy the boot sector. You should still be in the command prompt window

See full blog post at Create Bootable Windows Server 2016 USB Thumb Drive for Installing OS http://itproguru.com/expert/2016/05/create-bootable-windows-server-2016-usb-thumb-drive-for-installing-os/ for commands and detailed steps

  1. Now we just need to copy files... (You should still be in the DOS window)

See full blog post at Create Bootable Windows Server 2016 USB Thumb Drive for Installing OS http://itproguru.com/expert/2016/05/create-bootable-windows-server-2016-usb-thumb-drive-for-installing-os/ for commands and detailed steps

  1. Once the copy finishes, you can boot to the USB drive and it will be treated like an attached DVD. Remember, you may have to tell your computer to boot to the USB device which is often done from or boot options in your BIOS / UEFI settings.

See full blog post at Create Bootable Windows Server 2016 USB Thumb Drive for Installing OS http://itproguru.com/expert/2016/05/create-bootable-windows-server-2016-usb-thumb-drive-for-installing-os/ for commands and detailed steps