How to Extract an ISO File to USB Flash

By Brian Gallagher

ISO files are files that can be loaded onto a CD or DVD using a variety of programs. Then, you can set your computer to boot from this CD/DVD to install the software. Many open-source operating systems are distributed as ISOs. Putting an ISO image file onto a USB flash drive can be extremely useful, especially if you want to move the image to another computer.

Things You'll Need

  • USB flash drive
  • ISO file

Step 1

Obtain a USB flash drive that exceeds the size of the ISO file you wish to transfer. Many ISO files can be greater than 2 GB in size, so a high-capacity flash drive (4 GB or greater) is necessary.

Step 2

Find the ISO file on your computer.

Step 3

Insert your flash drive into a USB port on your computer.

Step 4

Open "My Computer" ("Computer" in Windows 7) and find your flash drive in the "Devices with removable storage" section.

Step 5

Drag the ISO file from its current location to your flash drive. If you just want to copy the file to your flash drive (leave a copy on your desktop as well), right-click the ISO file and select "Copy." Then, open up your flash drive contents, right-click and select "Paste."