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I have written an ISO file to a USB drive from Linux using dd if=file.iso of=/dev/sdb1.

This works fine, I can then read the data on Linux. Automount works, as does mounting manually (filesystem is detected as ISO9660).

However, Windows won't read the drive. It detects it but only offers to format it.

Is Windows unable to read ISO9660 filesystems on USB drives? Is there some workaround?

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What did you put on the USB drive? Is it something formatted with a Unix-style file system, or something like exFat, Fat32, or NTFS that Windows can read? – Taegost Jul 19 '13 at 13:59
The filesystem is ISO 9660, which is usually only used for data CDs/DVDs. It can also be used on USB drives, most commonly to create bootable USB drives (for Linux distro installers and such). I wanted to know if Windows could read data from a ISO9660-formatted USB drive, however it appears this is not the case. – Joe La Frite Jul 22 '13 at 12:50
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I think windows does not allow iso9660 on a usb stick which responds as mass storage device rather than a cd rom drive.

It only allows you to use a usb stick with u3 support. There are tools to overwrite such sticks to provide the iso image of your choice.


Linux supports the iso9660 file system on every device. (

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That was what I was afraid of. Thank you for your reply! – Joe La Frite Jul 22 '13 at 12:46

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