How to install Windows 11 from USB or DVD

Windows 11 installation on laptop

Written by: Jay H.

Windows 11 is Microsoft’s latest operating system, sporting shiny new looks and features. If you’re thinking of upgrading to Windows 11 and can’t install it via Windows Update or want to install it on a new system, you can do so in a few steps. Here’s how to install Windows 11 from a USB or DVD.

Requirements for Windows 11

Before you install Windows 11, you want to ensure your device is compatible with the operating system. You can read the Windows 11 minimum system requirements or download and run the PC Health Check app here. If you use PC Health Check, it will scan your device and determine whether or not your device meets the requirements.

If your PC works with Windows 11, you can download the latest ISO version of the operating system directly from Microsoft. Once you have that file, we will need to create a bootable USB using a tool such as Rufus. Navigate to the website and download the latest version under the Downloads section.

Creating a bootable USB device

Once you’ve launched Rufus, select the USB device you want to boot from under Device. Then, ensure that Disk or ISO image is selected under Boot selection and click Select. Browse through your files and select the ISO file we downloaded from the Microsoft website and press Open.

Select Disk or ISO image in Rufus to create bootable USB

Rufus should automatically adjust its settings based on the file you’ve uploaded that suits most computers. Once you’ve finished, press Start and wait for Rufus to create the bootable drive. Once done, click Finish on the new screen.

Installing Windows 11 from a USB or DVD

Let’s install Windows 11 on the target PC. If you’re upgrading a computer from Windows 10, you’ll need to open your Windows settings and click on Update & Security. Then, on the left-hand menu, select Recovery. Under Advanced startup, select Restart now. Your device will restart and you should see a screen that says Choose an option. Click Use a device, then choose the bootable drive we previously created. Your computer will then restart and boot from the device you’ve selected.

If you instead need to boot from a USB drive using your BIOS/UEFI boot menu, you’ll need to power on or restart your PC. When you see the BIOS/UEFI screen, you’ll need certain keys to get into the boot menu. Usually, most PC manufacturers use F12, F11, F9, or F8 for this purpose, but if you’re uncertain, you can find out by googling your motherboard manufacturer’s boot menu keys or checking your computer’s documentation.

Once the boot menu appears on the screen, select the bootable drive we previously created. Your computer will then boot from this device.

You should then see a message that says Press any key to boot from CD or DVD, so press any key on your keyboard. The Windows 11 setup wizard should then start, and you’ll have to set your preferred option for language, time and currency formats, and keyboard input settings. Once you’ve finished, click Next, then click Install now on the new page.

Windows 11 setup screen

Windows will ask you to activate it by entering a product key, but you can select I don’t have a product key and use Windows 11 without activating it if you don’t have one.

Activate Windows 11 screen

On the next screen, you can choose which version of Windows you want to install. If you’re a home user, select Home or Pro (we recommend Pro). Educational users should use Education, and organizations should use Enterprise. Select Next, then accept the license terms on the next page.

Select which version of Windows 11 to install screen

Next, you’ll have to decide whether you want to upgrade Windows and keep your files or install Windows on a new computer. If you want to keep your data and files, select Upgrade. Otherwise, for a clean installation, choose Custom.

Windows 11 installation type screen

You’ll then be able to choose where you want Windows to install your partition. Select the appropriate drive and click Next. You can also delete, format, and create new partitions manually if you choose to do so.

Windows 11 partition page

Finally, the actual Windows 11 installation will commence. It may take a while for the operating system to install, especially if you’re computer is older or is using a hard disk drive. Once finished, Windows will automatically restart after 10 seconds, or you can click Restart now.

After starting up, you’ll then be able to customize Windows 11. Go through each step and select the appropriate option and add or create a Microsoft account. Once you’ve finished, you can finally start using Windows 11! Congratulations on the successful installation.

If you run into any trouble with your Windows 11 installation, please reach out to us today. An experienced support technician is ready to help.Protected by Copyscape

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