If you want do a clean install of Windows 11 on your PC, a good way to do this is to create a bootable USB drive. Although you can use Microsoft’s media creation tool (not available until Windows 11 GA is released), today we will see a different approach with the free Rufus utility.

Download your Windows 11 ISO

To download the Windows 11 ISO, go to this Microsoft Insider page. For best results, select the Beta channel version. The Dev channel will be much less stable.

Create a bootable Windows 11 flash drive with Rufus

To get started, download and install the Rufus utility on a Windows 10 PC.

During the Rufus installation process, it will ask if you want to download the latest update. Click on Download.

When Rufus starts, in Device, select your USB flash drive. Then click the button To select right. Next, select the Windows 11 ISO file that you downloaded.

Now for the “Image Option”, set the drop down menu to Windows standard installation. Set the “Partition Scheme” as GPT. In the “Volume Label” field, type a name for the drive.

For the rest of the fields, keep them as they are. When you are ready, click the button Start.

When the warning appears that all data on the flash drive will be erased, click the OK button.

And wait while your bootable USB drive is created. You will see a progress bar in the section “StateWhile it is done.

Note: If you get the following message about disabling Secure Boot, you can ignore it and proceed with the installation as you normally would. To learn more about this, read our article on how to perform a clean install of Windows 11.


This is all that needs to be done to create a bootable Windows 11 USB drive. Now you are ready to install it on a new PC. At the time of writing this article, we are still in the Windows Insider builds, or “beta.” Therefore, make sure to install it on a secondary PC.

But the process of creating a bootable USB drive with Rufus and the clean installation process will be essentially the same when Windows 11 is generally available.

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