How to Make Windows 11 Bootable USB on macOS
Windows 11 is the next big release of Microsoft Windows operating system. From what we have learnt, a lot of new features has been introduced and we have seen many possible feedback about Windows 11. If you are the one who want to experience the new features of Windows 11, then this post will be a great help.
However, this is dedicated to Mac users as the procedure is much more complicated than a Windows PC. The reason is that there are much less tools available for this task. Please check out the details here and make your own Windows 11 bootable USB on a Mac.
Check System Information
This is the most important thing you should check out. Make sure the PC or Mac you are going to install Windows 11 meets the minimal system requirements of Windows 11. Below is the screenshot for Windows 11 system requirements:
Note: If TMP 2.0 is missing on your device, please don’t worry. There are a couple of tricks to bypass it.
If your computer is fully compatible with Windows 11, then go ahead and create a Windows 11 bootable USB drive for installation.
Download Windows 11 ISO from Microsoft
[Updates on Oct 8, 2021] Windows 11 is now officially available on Microsoft website. You can directly download Windows 11 ISO from Microsoft.com.
First, head over to Windows 11 download page:
Scroll down the page and move to Download Windows 11 Disk Image (ISO) section. Click Download button and choose a product language.
After that, Windows 11 64-bit download link will be shown on screen. The file (Win11_English_x64.iso) is 5.1 GB and it takes a while for full download. Please note this download link will expire in 24 hours since the time of creation.
Enroll Windows Insider Program and Download latest Windows 11 ISO (Optional)
Until the time we are writing the post, Microsoft still doesn’t provide the direct download of Windows 11 ISO. The only available way recommended by Microsoft is through Windows Insider Program, the first place to check and test new product release of Microsoft products. It is totally free and easy to get started.
To get Windows 11 ISO from Microsoft website, please go to Windows Insider page (https://insider.windows.com/en-us/getting-started) and sign in with a Microsoft account. Click the Register button to enroll into this campaign.
After that, move to Flight tab and click download a Windows Insider Preview ISO link to download page.
You will redirected to a new page (Windows Insider Preview Downloads). At this time, you need to scroll down the page and locate Select edition menu, from where you can pick up a Windows 11 ISO for Insider Build. Here is an example:
Click the Confirm button after selecting an edition. Next, choose a language for Windows 11 installation. Wait a few seconds and you will be presented with a 64-bit Download link, which is only valid for 24 hours. Please click the download link as soon as possible.
It should take a while for downloading as the file is nearly 5GB. The file name is like this: Windows11_InsiderPreview_Client_x64_en-us_22454.iso
You can also download Windows 11 ISO from other sources but the above one is most recommended as the ISO file is clean and no hidden risk.
Make Windows 11 Bootable USB on macOS
You have completed half of the task once you got a Windows 11 ISO successfully. Now, it is the time to create a Windows 11 bootable USB on Mac. We are going to share three different ways to do this: Boot Camp Assistant, Terminal and UUByte ISO Editor for Mac.
The first one is a commercial app that works more smoothly and have less errors. Mostly importantly, you can use it on all modern macOS and also support Macs powered by Intel and Apple Silicon Chip. The last two are built-in system apps available on all macOS but they have some big pitfalls. Please pick the right one according to your own situation.
UUByte ISO Editor: The Easy Way to Create Windows 11 Bootable USB on Mac
The last two methods are totally free but you have to spend extra time dealing with errors and commands. If you are willing to pay for some money, then UUByte ISO Editor for Mac makes this task much more easier. This app has broad support for different Mac models and macOS versions. And you will get a Windows 11 installer USB within five clicks.
This is a more safe and time-saving approach. However, if you prefer a complete free method, then go with Boot Camp Assistant or Terminal app in the coming sections.
To get started, please download the installation dmg from this link:
Launch ISO Editor app on your Mac and hit the Burn button.
At the new page, add Windows 11 ISO and choose USB drive from drop-down list. The other settings can be left with default values.
Finally, click the Burn button at the bottom to copying Windows 11 ISO to USB. This will be done in 4 four minutes on a USB 3.0 drive.
- Not free.
Boot Camp Assistant: Stock App to Create Windows 11 Bootable USB on Mac
Boot Camp Assistant should be our first choice when Windows 11 ISO file is less than 4.5GB (install.wim less than 4 GB). It is the stock app for installing Windows on Mac and creating bootable USB from Windows ISO.
However, you may experience several issues with this app and most importantly, creating Windows bootable USB feature is no longer available in macOS Big Sur and it does not support Apple Silicon Mac as well.
If you are using an Intel Mac with Catalina or previous version, then it is good to go.
Now, open Boot Camp Assistant app from Application folder and wait for initial cleanup of old time machine backups. Next, select Create a Windows 11 or later install disk to proceed.
Next, import Windows 11 ISO into Boot Camp app and choose the right USB drive where Windows 11 OS files will be copied to. Finally, click Continue button to start burning Windows 11 ISO to USB drive. That’s all!
- This feature is disabled in macOS Big Sur.
- Can not run on M1 Mac
Terminal: The Tricky Way to Make Windows 11 Bootable USB on Mac
There is no restrictions when it comes to create Windows 11 bootable USB on Mac using Terminal app. It is a command-line app and only supports text commands. You can complete the task in the same way on all Macs.
First, identify the USB drive connected to Mac:
In our example, the USB drive is /dev/disk3.
Next, format USB drive and create a new partition to hold Windows 11 OS. WIN11 is the new volume name of USB drive.
diskutil eraseDisk MS-DOS WIN11 disk3
Now, mount Windows 11 ISO on Mac so you can copy files from it. My Windows 11 ISO file in saved in Desktop folder. You should change the path name accordingly.
hdiutil mount ~/Desktop/Windows_11_DEV_EN.iso
Find the volume name for USB drive and Windows 11 ISO, which will be used for next command.
WIN11 is the volume name of connected USB and CCCOMA_X64FRE_EN-US_DV9 is the name of mounted Windows 11 ISO.
The last step is to copy Windows 11 OS files from mounted volume to USB drive with a progress bar.
rsync -avh — progress /Volumes/CCCOMA_X64FRE_EN-US_DV9/* /Volumes/WIN11/
- Not user friendly for beginners.
- Copying process is quite slow.
- More risky than other methods because of disk formatting command.
One of the above methods should work for you. Make your own decision based on the Mac specs and macOS version. After creating Windows 11 bootable USB, the next step is to boot from it and install Windows 11 on a PC.