Writing an image to a USB stick or SD card on Windows


The instructions are the same, regardless of whether you write the image to a USB stick, or to an SD card.

If you are writing to an SD card, you can use your computer’s built-in SD card reader (if it has one), or use a USB adapter.

To write the image:

  • Download Disk Imager from sourceforge.net/projects/win32diskimages/files/ and extract that ZIP file to a new folder. Open up that folder, then double-click Win32DiskImager in the folder.

  • Insert your USB stick or SD card. Note the drive letter that Windows assigns to your stick or card.


    Make sure you get the device name right, otherwise you might accidentally destroy the data on some other hard drive!


    Also make sure your USB stick or SD card does not contain any valuable data; it will be mercilessly overwritten.

  • In Disk Imager, select the image file you downloaded, and the drive letter you noted earlier. Click “Write”. This may take 10min or longer, depending on the speed of your USB stick or SD card, so be patient.

  • When done, for good measure wait for a little bit. Rumor has it some flash drives keep writing for some time after the OS thinks they are done. If that is true for your device, and you remove the device prematurely, you may end up with a corrupted image without a good way of telling that it happened.

Thanks to the Ubuntu project whose description helped when creating this page.