Consumer Preview Windows 8 Ready for USB Drive Download
Did we ever mention just how flash drive-friendly the new Windows 8 is shaping up to be? We first reported back in September the new Windows 8 was planning to develop a portable app version of the system called Windows To Go for the business sector that could be carried around on your custom USB flash drive. Microsoft didn’t give us a lot of details last fall, but now we’re getting a better picture of what Windows 8 is all about. It’s worth noting that this is only a Consumer Preview, a beta release that’s free to try, but will likely get a little more polishing.
First, here’s how to download Windows 8 to your USB flash drive (a much faster, far less messy option than burning to DVD):
- Before you start, you need to have three essentials: a USB stick that’s at least 4GB, Windows 8’s ISO file and the Windows USB/DVD download tool.
- Next, insert your USB drive, which will allow you to select “USB device” from your popup window as your media type.
- The copy process will format your USB drive (wiping it clean) and then the transfer the copies of Windows 8 files.
- Once the installation is finished, your drive is automatically bootable.
Here’s a small glimpse of what you’ll see on your Windows 8 USB drive:
- A tablet, smartphone-friendly interface. Microsoft incorporated the ability to move and slide between apps with the same touch functionality as you expect for your mobile devices. It’s colorful with big app icons that are easy on the eyes.
- With the touch workflow in mind, Microsoft says that it also translates well to the keyboard and mouse operation on your laptop or desktop.
- Free apps for the duration of the Consumer Preview, which is a great way to test how they work with the new system.
- A boost in speed. Microsoft stressed that the new overhaul will make work or play “fast and fluid” thanks in part to its ability to run four different “systems-on-a-chip.”
We want your input. What are you seeing that you like or don’t like about Windows 8 on your USB stick?