Installing Windows 7 from a USB drive is easier as you can simply make the installer USB drive for it. But what if you want to install Windows XP from USB drive? It is not so easy as like as you did for the Windows Vista, 7 or Windows 8. To install XP from a USB/Pen drive, you need to follow some advanced steps. Because, Windows XP does not have the ‘boot from USB’ drive feature. But, you can still install Windows XP from a USB or flash drive in your computer using by following this simple how-to guide (If you are facing any issue with your USB drive then read How to Fix USB problems).
Installing any operating system from a removable drive is always useful. Especially, if the CD or DVD-ROM of your computer does not work properly then this is a handy way to get your computer installed with XP.
When you insert the installer disk in your CD/DVD-ROM, the machine detects it and prompts for “Press any key to boot from cd”. By then, you can format the hard disk, make the partitions and then you can install the operating system in your system.
The same thing does not happen with you if you just copy the content of a Windows XP installer disk into a USB drive. You need to make your USB drive bootable. Here, in this article, I’ve discussed the best ways to install Windows XP from USB or flash drive step-by-step.
How To Install Windows XP from USB Flash Drive
- Firstly, download the software Win to Flash which does not need any installation. Just double-click the setup file and the following screen appears.
- Head to the ‘Task’ tab and choose your task as the following. Choose the Task type as “Transfer Windows XP/2003 setup to flash” from the drop-down. Click the ‘Create’ button.
- Click the ‘Next’ button to continue.
- Select the source path of the Windows installation disk. Or, locate the path of the copy that is dumped at your hard drive as well as the path of your USB flash/pen drive.
- Click the ‘Next’ button and wait until the bootable copy is prepared into your USB Flash drive.
Once completed, you can start installing Windows XP. It is a pretty easy to install the Windows XP from that USB drive. Just boot your computer from that USB stick. To do that follow the steps below.
How to Boot and Install XP from USB Drive
After preparing the bootable USB device (with any of the above processes), you need to boot your computer from the USB drive to start the setup process. Go through the following steps in order to boot your PC/Laptop from the removable device.
- Press the F2 key ( or the DELETE key, it varies with the brand of your computer mother board) to enter into the BIOS settings.
- Head to the “Boot” menu and set the boot preference for the Removable disk as “First”.
- Save the setup and exit by pressing the F10 key.
Now your computer should boot from the USB/pen drive.
Hope this helps to setup Windows XP in your desktops or laptops which do not have CD or DVD drive. You can just do it from a USB drive.
Related: How to Install Windows 8 from USB Stick.
Alternative Tool to Create XP Bootable USB Drive
There are several tools available like Win to Flash to install XP from the USB disk. PeToUSb, WinSetupFromUSB are such third-party tools which are pretty famous for preparing the bootable USB. The PeToUSB method is bit complicated (you can go through a longer but more reliable way to prepare bootable USB stick and install Windows XP from the removable drive – Alternative Way to Install Windows XP from USB Drive) and the Win To Flash application asks you to install an add-on (adware) into your browser. If you’re too lazy to follow the PeToUSB method or you don’t want to install any adware at your browser, the WinSetupFromUSB could be perfect for you.
WinSetupFromUSB is a tiny software developed by Ilko_t. It does not require any installation, just double-click on the EXE file to get started. For those who experienced USB booting related errors such as corrupted or missing HAL.DLL when using Win To Flash or PeToUSB, this utility is the exact solution. You can find more information about WinSetupFromUSB from here.
You can download it from this link. Once downloaded, launch the exe file and follow the onscreen instruction to prepare your pen drive so that you can install Windows XP from it.