[Guide] How to Create Portable Version of Windows 8 on USB Drive Using “Windows To Go” Feature?

One of the most impressive and most talked about features introduced in Windows 8 is "Windows To Go". "Windows To Go" is a brand new feature ever introduced in any Windows version which helps users in creating a portable live version of fully functional Windows 8 OS which is known as "Windows To Go Workspace". It saves the portable Windows 8 environment on a USB drive which can be used in any other PC to start Windows 8 immediately.

If you have this portable version of Windows 8, you don't need to install it again in any other computer system. You just need to insert the USB drive in the computer and boot the computer. That's it. You'll have a full version of Windows 8 running in that computer within seconds.

This type of portable version of Windows 8 might become very useful if you are traveling and don't have access to your personal computer. You just need to carry the USB drive with you and you can insert the USB drive in any other computer system and you are ready to work in your very own Windows 8 OS.


Although all types of USB drives should work for creating portable Windows 8 version but you should always use a USB drive having "Designed for Windows" logo on it. Regarding the host computer system which will run this portable Windows 8 version, it should pass the minimum system requirements to use Windows 7 or Windows 8 OS. If the computer system has been certified to use Windows 7 or Windows 8, it'll run this portable version of Windows 8 without any problem. Basically the host computer system must have at least 1GHz processor and 2 GB RAM.

Now the question comes how to create this portable version of Windows 8? The "Windows To Go" feature is only available in Windows 8 Enterprise edition so you'll first need the Enterprise version. Don't worry! You can download a 90-day trial version of fully functional Windows 8 Enterprise edition absolutely free using following link:

Download 90-Day Trial Version of Windows 8 Enterprise Edition Absolutely Free

Install Windows 8 Enterprise edition and then you can launch "Windows To Go" wizard from Control Panel. Follow the easy steps and you'll have a bootable USB drive in your hand which will run a portable version of Windows 8 anywhere in any PC.


Now the good news is that Microsoft is offering a free guide for creating portable Windows 8 environment using Windows To Go feature which can be downloaded using following link:

Download Free Guide to Create Portable Windows 8 Using Windows To Go Feature

Its a .docx file which can be opened in a word processor such as Microsoft Word. Its a small guide consists of 7 pages only. It helps you in learning how to create the portable Windows 8 USB drive as well as how to use it in a host computer.

Thanks to our friend Rob Margel for sharing it...


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Posted in: Windows 8 / 8.1

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  • They should have included this in Windows 7. This is possibly the only feature that has me truly interested in Windows 8.

  • VG

    ^^ lol. At least there is something that you like about Windows 8. ;)

  • The only problem is that it is only available with Windows 8 Enterprise.

  • It's good that Windows finally has this capability, though it is still unfortunately vastly inferior to Linux Live USBs. Only available on Enterprise? Requires an installation of an OS? You are only supposed to install a portable Windows 8 on a certified USB stick? Which needs to be a minimum of 32GB? I'm a Windows fanboy, but this seriously disappoints me.

  • how much usb disk space is recomended and alas the feature is only in Enterprise Edition and me having Pro version :'(

  • I assume that if we use the 90-day Enterprise edition the flash drive OS will also expire after 90 days. Please correct me if this is wrong.

  • The reason why it's only for Windows 8 Enterprise is because it is intended only for Enterprise customers. It is ideal for workplaces with many employees who move regularly from computer to computer and need to access their company files, intranet, etc. securely and to also have their own operating system that can be isolated from the computer's local operating system.

  • Seriously? Just use WinBuilder, you can have Win7 in an 8GB drive.

  • ^^ always thought WinBuilder is for boot disks only. No?

  • I'll second Someone's point. You have to EDIT the article to include the point that "TO GO" is only a part of Windows 8 Enterprise. The point should be made in the first paragraph!

    I too wish that MS had made a part of Windows 8 Pro.

  • You can also install Windows 8 using Windows 7 ISO/Download Tool for alternative.

  • hey vg , are there no 3rd party softwares to do the job . I desperately need one of them

  • @Addy, use WinBuilder. You'll need an ISO or a disc or a folder with the setup files to create ur Win XP, Vista, 7, 8 Standard/Pro live environment plus a usb to put ur windows to-go on.

  • I have a portable version of XP its not official put same idea boot xp from cd(cant save changes) or usb. Also many distros of linux are portable

  • The USB flash drive must be version 3.0. USB 2.0 devices should not work.

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