Make Windows 10, Windows 8.1 Enterprise portable without any additional software needed.

If you are interested in creating a bootable USB, you may have come across tutorials from on creating USB bootables, such as the instructions for creating a bootable USB with Hiren’s BootCD quickly or how to create a USB boot with Rufus to install Windows. Today, we will introduce another method for creating a bootable USB, which is even more powerful than a regular boot. Specifically, we will discuss creating a packaged version of Windows called Windows Portable, which can be used as soon as it boots up. To create this version of Windows, you don’t need to use any additional software thanks to the Windows To Go feature. However, it’s important to note that this feature is only available in Windows 8.1 Enterprise and Windows 10 Enterprise.

Without going into further detail, let’s explore the concept of Windows To Go and the capabilities of the Windows version created using this tool.

What is Windows To Go?

Windows To Go is a feature available in the Enterprise editions of Windows 8.1 and Windows 10. It enables the creation of a portable version of Windows that can be easily launched and used on computers that already have Windows 7 or Windows 8 installed, without the need for installation. This feature is particularly useful in scenarios where a corporate version of Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 is created and distributed to employees, allowing them to access and utilize company tools and utilities without making significant changes to their personal devices. Additionally, individual users can create a portable version of Windows running on Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 and utilize it on their home computers that have Windows 7 installed.

The WTG workspace, which is the Win version built with Windows To Go, is compatible with desktop computers, laptops, and tablets. You have the ability to:

  • Sign in to the company domain.
  • Connect to the corporate network remotely via VPN.
  • Install applications.
  • Access to server-attached removable storage devices (such as card readers).

WTG workspace is a solution for working with any server (desktop, laptop, tablet) that allows booting from a USB drive (Boot To USB Hard Disk Drive). When the WTG workspace is plugged into a USB port on the server, it remains separate from the server’s hard drive, ensuring there is no risk of intrusion or infection from the drive. Users have the flexibility to switch between the WTG workspace and the server hard drive by inserting or removing the WTG workspace during reboot.

Note: In order to create a Windows To Go (WTG) workspace, a USB 3.0 is necessary. Nevertheless, it can also be plugged into USB 3.x and USB 2.x ports on the host machine.

Create Windows To Go workspace

To create a WTG workspace, follow these steps:

1. Open the Control Panel on Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 (Enterprise edition only).

2. Locate the Windows To Go Creator tool within the Control Panel.

3. Launch the Windows To Go Creator tool.

4. Follow the on-screen instructions to specify the desired drive for the WTG workspace and the Windows image to be used.

5. Customize any additional settings as needed.

6. Wait for the tool to complete the creation of the WTG workspace.

By following these steps, you can successfully create a WTG workspace using the Windows To Go Creator tool available in the Control Panel of Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 (Enterprise edition only).

1. Open Control Panel on your computer that is running Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 Enterprise edition.
2. Locate and click on the “Windows To Go” option in Control Panel.
3. Connect a USB drive with sufficient capacity and ensure that there is no important data on it.
4. In the “Windows To Go” interface, choose the connected USB drive from the list of available drives.
5. Select the option to “Create a Windows To Go Workspace”.
6. You will then be prompted to select the Windows installation DVD or ISO file to create the WTG workspace. Choose the ISO file or Windows installation disc from your computer.
7. Enter the required language and user configuration details for the WTG workspace.
8. Click on the “Create” button.

Creating a WTG workspace is a time-consuming process, but once it is completed, you can utilize the WTG workspace from the USB drive to access the Windows environment on different computers.

Step 1: Download the Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 ISO file onto the server (host).

Step 2: Click the right mouse button on the downloaded ISO file and select “Mount”. The ISO file will then be displayed as a drive on the server.

Mount ISO file on Windows 10

Step 3: Open the Control Panel on the host computer and select “Windows To Go”.

Access to Windows To Go on Windows 10

Step 4: Connect the USB to the server.

Step 5: Choose the desired USB device > Click on Continue.

Select the USB you want to use to create Windows portable

Step 6: Choose the mounted ISO file and click Next. If the ISO file is not located, click on Add search location to select the file and then proceed with Next.

Select the ISO file you want to create Win portable

Step 7: When prompted with the “Set BitLocker password (optional)” screen, check the box that says “Use BitLocker with Windows To Go workspace” if you wish to secure the drive with BitLocker drive encryption. Follow the provided instructions to input and confirm your BitLocker password.

Enter BitLocker password if necessary

Step 8: Select “Create” on the Ready to create Windows to Go space screen to create a WTG workspace.

Click Create to create Windows portable

Step 9: Please be patient and wait for the system to create the WTG workspace. The process should take less than 1 hour.

Step 10: When you reach the Choose a boot option screen, choose an option. If you select Yes, Windows Boot Manager will automatically launch Windows To Go when it is connected to the server.

Boot option

Please note that if you wish to modify the startup selection after creating the Windows To Go workspace, you can follow these steps on the Start screen of Windows 8.1 (or Windows 10): Enter “Change Windows To Go startup options” in the search bar, click on Settings, modify the search scope to include system settings, and finally click on “Change Windows To Go startup options” to initiate the process.

Change boot order after creating WTG workspace


Step 11: Once the licensing process is finished, click on Save and restart the host machine to boot into the WTG workspace.

We can observe that this method of making Windows portable is similar to installing Windows on a USB device for convenient usage on different computers. It provides faster accessibility and allows users to carry Windows with them to employ at any given time.