Create Windows To Go Without the Enterprise Edition

Windows To Go feature of Windows 10/8.1/8 is very convenient, but it requires Enterprise license, certified USB thumbdrive, and USB 3.0 ports on your PC.

With FlashBoot, you can use Windows To Go feature on non-Enterprise Edition of Windows, or with non-certified USB thumbdrives, including USB 2.0 hardware.

Contents

1. About Windows To Go

Windows To Go (W2G) is a feature in Windows 10/8.1/8 Enterprise Editions that allows Windows to boot and run from mass storage devices such as USB thumbdrives and external USB hard disk drives.

Using this feature, fully-functional Windows operating system can be run from USB thumbdrive. So, Windows not just installs from USB thumbdrive to your internal HDD, but boots from USB thumbdrive and works in full-featured mode.

2. Intended Audience

This article is for everyone who wants to use Windows To Go feature on non-Enterprise Edition of Windows 10/8.1/8, or with non-certified USB thumbdrives.

3. Things you will need

  • USB thumbdrive or USB HDD (minimum size is 16 Gb, 32 Gb recommended).
  • A copy of a Windows 10/8.1/8 installation disc or ISO file (any edition).
  • Downloaded and installed software called FlashBoot. FlashBoot is a shareware for $29.95, but it has 30-day trial period, so you can make sure yourself that it works as intended, without spending a dime.
  • Optional requrement: USB 3.0 storage device and computer with USB 3.0 ports. (USB 2.0 will work too, but USB 3.0 provides better speed and overall better user experience.)

4. Using FlashBoot to install Windows To Go on the USB thumbdrive

FlashBoot itself can be run under any version of Windows, starting from Windows XP, not necessarily under the version of Windows being installed to the target USB thumbdrive or USB HDD.

1) Run FlashBoot, click Next

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Starting FlashBoot
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Starting FlashBoot


2) Choose CD -> USB in Main Menu

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Bootable CD to USB Conversion
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Bootable CD to USB Conversion


3) Choose CD/DVD drive or image file and click Next

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Choosing Windows Installation CD or ISO Image File
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Choosing Windows Installation CD or ISO Image File


4) Choose "Install fully-functional Windows 8/8.1/10 to USB thumbdrive" from the scenario list and click Next

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Install Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition thumbdrive
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Install Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition thumbdrive


5) Choose target USB disk (flash, HDD) and click Next

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Choose target USB thumbdrive or USB HDD
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Choose target USB thumbdrive or USB HDD


6) Enter volume label or leave it as is and click Next

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Enter volume label for Windows to Go USB thumbdrive
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Enter volume label for Windows to Go USB thumbdrive


7) Check summary information and click Next

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Summary information
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Summary information


8) Wait for process completion

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Installing Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition thumbdrive
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - Installing Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition thumbdrive


9) USB disk is ready for use. Click OK to exit

Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - FlashBoot done
Windows To Go without Enterprise Edition - FlashBoot done