Installing Windows 7 From USB Drive

Last weekend’s project was to replace a Dell’s (Inspiron 1440) hard drive and reinstall the Windows 7. Unfortunately the DVD drive was not working.

I bought a new WD 500GB hdd for RM165 (about USD50).


Since the DVD drive was not working, I had to install Windows 7  from a USB drive. To do that, Microsoft provides a neat tool called Windows 7 USB DVD Download Tool.

1. First, convert the Windows 7 installer DVD which came with the notebook, into an .iso file. I used Corel Burn.Now utility from my Lenovo to do so (other DVD programs should be able to do the same).

Corel Burn.Now1 v2


2. Once the .iso is created, install the software from Microsoft –

Win 7 Download Tool v1


3. Run the application and select the .iso created in step 1.

Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 1


4. Insert an empty USB drive and click on ‘USB device’.

Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 2


5. You would need a USB drive with at least 4GB of free space.

Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 3


6. The USB contents will be erased – so ensure you copy all your data out before proceeding.

Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 4


7. ‘All contents of this device will be lost’ – don’t regret later.

Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 5


8. It will proceed to create a bootable USB device with the Windows 7 installer.

Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 6Win 7 Download Tool v1 - 7


I fixed the new hdd and booted from the USB drive created above (for this Dell machine, to boot from USB, I pressed F12 at the Dell boot screen and choose USB drive).

Just follow the Windows 7 installation steps as you would when installing from a DVD.

Dell Inspiron 1440 v1Old notebook with a new heart