How to Create Windows 10 Recovery USB Drive

Have you received the dreaded “No bootable device found” message or a similar one on boot? My wife recently received this message on her PC. Windows 10 would not load. This usually means your hard drive has failed or your PC Master Boot Record (MBR) is corrupt. In her case, the hard drive had failed. We got no warning the hard drive was failing, it died immediately.

Have you received the dreaded “No bootable device found” message or a similar one on boot? My wife recently received this message on her PC. Windows 10 would not load. This usually means your hard drive has failed or your PC Master Boot Record (MBR) is corrupt. In her case, the hard drive had failed. We got no warning the hard drive was failing, it died immediately.

Let’s explore how to create a Windows 10 recovery USB drive to reset your computer to load Windows 10 or reinstall the operating system..

You should create this USB recovery drive after each major upgrade of Windows 10; which is usually every 6 months.

Related

How to Fix a Detected Hard Disk Problem

How to Check Your Hard Drive Status

Microsoft File Recovery Tool for Windows 10

This is for devices running Windows 10

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Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

What is a Windows 10 Recovery Drive

If you do not have a USB drive to create Windows 10 recovery disk, you can use a CD or DVD to create s system repair disc. Both types of Windows 10 recovery media allow you to use Windows recovery options even when your computer fails to boot. If you cannot restore your computer, Windows 10 boot repair disk also gives you a chance to reinstall Windows 10.

We will be using the built-in Recovery Media Creator.

You may be concerned about the Windows 10 recovery USB size. While creating a recovery drive, the program will copy a lot of files to the USB drive, so you need to prepare a flash drive that has at least 16 GB capacity (32 GB is preferred) and ensure it’s empty, because all the data on the USB drive will be deleted in this process. If the drive is new, it will be formatted during the recovery creation process.

Create the Recovery Drive

First, connect the USB drive to your computer, and then type “recovery drive” into the Cortana search box. In the listed results, select Recovery Drive app. Refer to below image:

Recovery Drive 1
Start the Recovery Drive app

In the pop-up window that appears, check the option Back up system files to the recovery drive and click Next. See below image:

Recovery Drive 2
The create a Recovery Drive dialog

Now, select the USB flash drive you prepared, and click Next to continue. See following image:

Recovery Drive 3
Selecting your USB device

On the next screen, click Create the recovery drive link to begin creating your Windows 10 recovery USB drive. Refer to below image:

Recovery Drive 4
A warning message that the contents of the USB will be deleted

After finishing this process, you may see an option Delete the recovery partition from your PC. If you have a Windows recovery partition on your PC, you can click it to delete the recovery partition and free up some space on your computer.

When your computer fails to boot, you can use this recovery USB drive to restore Windows 10 to a new hard drive. After installing a new hard drive, power up your computer, change boot order in BIOS to boot your system from the USB drive and follow on-screen instructions to finish the restoration.

Restoring Windows

The recovery drive created by Recovery Media Creator will not work across different versions of Windows. In other words, you cannot use a Windows 8 recovery disk to restore Windows 10, nor can you use a recovery drive made by Windows 10 64-bit to boot a 32-bit computer. That is to say, you cannot create a Windows 10 recovery USB disk from another computer to use for your computer with the built in tool.

Sometimes, you are not allowed to create recovery disk in Windows 10 and the built-in tool says, “We can’t create the recovery drive. A problem occurred while creating the recovery drive”.

Recovery Drive 5
The Recovery Drive problem dialog

If Windows fails to create a recovery drive with the error “We can’t create the recovery drive”, you should first check whether your USB drive is well connected and can be recognized by Windows. If that is not the case, you can simply download the Windows 10 recovery disk ISO file and burn it to your USB flash drive or CD/DVD.

That’s all on how to create Windows 10 recovery disk on a USB drive. As mentioned earlier, you should do this after each major upgrade of Windows 10.

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