How Big Is a Windows 11 Recovery USB?

I want to create a Windows 11 recovery USB flash drive, but I don't know how big a Windows 11 recovery USB is. And I prepared two blank USBs, one 16 GB and one 32 GB. Which one should I use?

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Rel· Answered on Jul 20, 2023

Hello, I suggest you use a 32 GB blank USB as the Windows 11 recovery drive.

According to Microsoft's official statement, at least 16 GB of space is required to create a recovery USB drive. However, the size of the USB flash drive required to create the Windows 11 recovery drive varies from 1 GB to 32 GB. The specific size of the USB depends on whether the user chooses to back up the system files to the recovery drive.

In other words, if the recovery drive contains system files, its size range will be 16GB-32GB. If you don't want your recovery drive to contain system files, your USB may only be 1GB.

It is worth knowing that the existence of system files is very important for recovering the drive. Although a normal USB recovery drive without system file backup is sufficient to start any Windows 11 computer and access the Windows troubleshooting tool, without system files, it cannot help you reinstall Windows 11.

Therefore, if the purpose of creating the recovery drive includes reinstalling the system, you'd better use a 32 GB blank USB as the carrier.

After successfully creating the Windows 11 recovery USB, please do not forget to back up your personal files and various application data. The recovery drive will not contain your original personal data, which will be lost as you reinstall the system. 

So, if you have some extremely important files, be sure to back them up regularly. EaseUS Todo Backup is an efficient backup software that can automatically back up files to external hard drives or the cloud space it provides for free. You can use it to build a backup solution for your data before you create a recovery USB.

Related article: How to Create a Windows 11/10 Recovery USB for Another Computer


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