There are at least two ways to make portable Windows 10 on USB. You can run the portable USB creator software from EaseUS, or download the ISO files to your USB. 

What Is A Windows 11/10/8/7 Portable Drive?

According to Google's search results, it can be identified that a portable Windows USB drive is a pen drive that is installed Windows system with Windows ISO and system files. It allows users to boot their computers or other PCs from the USB portable drive.

What is this for? Here is a list of advantages of a portable Windows USB drive:

Take Your System Anywhere Prevent System Error
When your computer or laptop suddenly crashes due to system failure or internal error, you can no longer boot from the PC. A portable Windows USB drive can help you reboot the PC from the USB drive, and then you can continue your work and find a solution to repair the corrupted Windows system. Windows portable USB drive allows you to take your own Windows system anywhere you need, and you can even directly boot your Windows from a USB drive on other computers. This will save your time and energy to take a laptop wherever you go on business.

Two ways to create a portable Windows 10 system on a USB will be offered in the following content. One is using a professional disk cloning software, EaseUS Todo Backup, and the other is through downloading ISO files. Before making the final decision, please check their effectiveness and difficulty. 

Methods Effectiveness Difficulty

Portable USB-creating software


High - Easily create a portable and bootable Windows USB, you can carry and use it on other devices. ⭐⭐
ISO file Medium - You need to download ISO files, and then install from the scratch ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Tip 1. How to Make Portable Windows 10 on USB Drive (with Software)

So how to effectively create such a portable Windows USB drive? For example, how to create a portable Windows USB drive for Windows 10 users? How to install and clone a Windows system to a USB drive without complex methods?

Fortunately, powerful system clone software EaseUS Todo Backup can do the job. It allows you to effectively clone and install Windows 10, 8, or 7, etc. systems to a USB drive with simple clicks. All ordinary users can do the job. You may download this software and learn how to make your Windows system bootable from a tiny USB drive now.

1 - Preparations

  • An external hard drive
  • The external hard drive cable
  • EaseUS Todo Backup

2 - Notes

  1. Check the unallocated space (enough unallocated space on the left)
  2. Check the partition style (the same with the system drive)

3 - Steps

Here is a detailed step-by-step guide to help you effectively create a portable USB system boot drive for Windows 10:

USB requirements:

1. Check how much disk space is used for the system C drive. Let's assume 40GB. Then prepare a qualified USB drive, of which the disk capacity must be larger than 40GB.

2. Do you use an empty new USB drive or an old one? Make sure that all the important data has been safely transferred because the system clone will overwrite data on it completely.

3. Correctly connect the USB drive to your machine and make sure that Windows has detected it and assigned a drive letter to it.

Follow the overall process to create a portable Windows USB drive and boot from it:

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Todo Backup. Expand the Tools menu and click "System Clone".

select system clone

Step 2. On the "System clone" window, the software will choose the system partition and boot partition by default. Just Choose the USB drive as the destination disk. Click on "Advanced options" and then "Create a portable windows USB Drive". Click "OK" and then "Next".

select system clone

Step 3. You can preview or adjust the disk layout on the destination drive. If there is no problem, click "Proceed" and the software will start immediately cloning the default system partitions of your desktop/laptop to the USB drive. After the cloning process is over, you can safely plug the USB drive out.

select system clone

Step 4. Boot from the USB drive.

  • Connect your portable USB to the computer
  • Restart the computer and press "Del" to enter BIOS
  • Set the PC to boot from the portable USB by changing the boot order in BIOS under the "Boot" tab
  • Save changes and you'll see your system booting up from the USB drive

related articles

How to Migrate Windows 10 from HDD to SSD?

You can migrate Windows 10 to SSD by means of cloning the Windows system drive partition from HDD/SSD to the new SSD.

Migrate Windows 10 from HDD to SSD

Tip 2. How to Make a Windows 10 To Go USB Drive (with ISO File)

If you don't want to use the software, you can download Windows 10 ISO file to make a portable Windows USB. To make it, you need to create Windows 10 installation media and then burn the ISO to DVD. Here are the details.

1 - Preparations

  • A copy of Rufus ( or WinToUSB
  • A USB 3.0 flash drive with at least 32 GB of storage space
  • A Windows ISO file
  • A valid license for your portable copy of Windows

2 - Steps

Step 1. You need to download and run the media creation tool.

As creating Windows 10 installation media will delete the content on USB or blank DVD, you'd better use a blank USB or blank DVD.

Step 2. On the "What do you want to do?" interface, select "Create installation media for another PC", and then select "Next".

Step 3. Choose the language, edition, and architecture (64-bit or 32-bit) for Windows 10. Select media tool you want to use:

how to create media tool with ISO files
To Burn ISO to USB in Windows 10:

Go to Rufus and download the latest version. After that, double-click the .exe file to launch Rufus and connect your USB to your computer. Then burn ISO to USB.

Step 1. Choose the USB device you want to burn the ISO file to. From the Boot selection drop-down menu, choose "Disk or ISO image (Please select)", then click "SELECT" and choose the ISO file stored on your computer.

Step 2. To ensure you can boot from the USB on both UEFI and BIOS computer, choose "MBR" under the Partition scheme, 

Step 3. Leave the other options unchanged and click "Start" to begin burning the Windows 10 ISO file to the USB drive.

how to run Windows 10 from USB

How to Run Windows 10 from a USB Drive

When you want to launch Windows 10 on a different computer, insert your USB drive into that PC. Then, follow these steps to run Windows 10 from a USB drive.

Step 1. Press the appropriate key (F2, F12, Delete, or Esc) to launch your Boot menu and choose boot from the USB drive.

run Windows 10 from USB drive

Step 2. The first time you run Windows 10 off the USB drive, you'll need to go through the normal Windows setup process. Then, activate Windows 10 with your license code. 


Both of the solutions can help you create a portable USB drive. No matter which method you choose, plan accordingly. Make sure the hardware is available wherever you're going.

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FAQ on How to Create Portable Windows 10 to USB

How do I run a portable version of Windows from a USB drive?

You can first insert your USB drive into that PC, then press the appropriate key (F2, F12, Delete, or Esc) to launch your Boot menu and choose boot from the USB drive. The first time you run Windows 10 off the USB drive, you'll need to go through the normal Windows setup process. Then, activate Windows 10 with your license code. 

Can I just put the Windows 10 ISO on USB?

No, you'll need to create a bootable USB drive using either the Media Creation Tool or Rufus. The Windows 10 ISO is a disc image that needs to be written to a USB drive in order for it to be used as installation media.

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Updated by Larissa

Larissa has rich experience in writing technical articles and is now a professional editor at EaseUS. She is good at writing articles about data recovery, disk cloning, disk partitioning, data backup, and other related knowledge. Her detailed and ultimate guides help users find effective solutions to their problems. She is fond of traveling, reading, and riding in her spare time.

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Written by Tracy King

Tracy became a member of the EaseUS content team in 2013. Being a technical writer for over 10 years, she is enthusiastic about sharing tips to assist readers in resolving complex issues in disk management, file transfer, PC & Mac performance optimization, etc., like an expert.

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