Capture, apply, and work with Windows images

The Windows 10 OPK includes an image file, install.wim, which contains the operating system files for your Windows edition.

Starting by deploying this image to a device, add your customizations to it, test, and incorporate those changes into your images, iterating until you're ready to put the image onto the factory floor.

File formats: WIM, FFU, VHD

To get the Windows image onto a device, you can install Windows using Windows Setup (.wim only) or a deployment script (.wim or .ffu).

Manage multiple variations of your Windows images by combining them into a single .wim file. A single .wim file can take a fraction of the drive space that multiple image files can take.

When you're ready to manufacture devices, recapture and deploy the image as an .FFU file, because FFUs are faster to apply on a factory floor. FFUs can still be modified like .WIM files, but you can only store one variation of the image at a time.

For more details about the file formats, see WIM vs. VHD vs. FFU: comparing image file formats.

Drives and partitions

Learn about setting up hard drives and partitions.


  • For WIM-based images, you can usually set up partitions during deployment, just before applying the .WIM image file.
  • For VHD and FFU-based images, you may need to do some partition setup before you capture the VHD/FFU image file. If the reference and destination drives are different sizes, you may also need to perform setup after you apply the VHD/FFU image file.

In this section

Topic Description
Hard Drives and Partitions Learn how to prepare a hard drive for a Windows installation
WIM vs. VHD vs. FFU: comparing image file formats Learn the differences of available Windows image formats
Capture and apply WIM images Capture, deploy, and modify a Windows image using WIM
Capture and apply Full Flash Update (FFU) images Capture, deploy, and modify a Windows image using FFU
Modify an image How to make changes to Windows images