On Microsoft's "Create Windows 10 Installation Media" page, it says that in order to create the installation media I need:

A blank USB flash drive with at least 8GB of space or blank DVD (and DVD burner) if you want to create media. We recommend using a blank USB or blank DVD, because any content on it will be deleted.

Would an 8GB MicroSD Card in a USB Reader work the same way? (Would Windows even "know" it wasn't a flash drive?)

thumb drive

I'm also a little unclear as to why an external hard drive can't be used for this purpose, but the only options in the instructions are USB flash drive or DVD-Rom (and nowadays it's easier to find a DVD drive at a garbage dump than at a store)...

  • Might depend on how the card reader identifies itself (some have multiple card slots/drives), and what today's particular version of windows install media program thinks is acceptable. So did you try it & did it work? – Xen2050 Mar 19 '18 at 5:13

Yes it’ll work just fine.

I’ve frequently used a microSD card inserted into a SD adapter inserted into a SD card reader plugged into a USB port to reinstall Windows and had no problems at all.

  • Really, it will boot & reinstall Windows directly from the card slot built-in to the laptop? – ashleedawg Mar 19 '18 at 10:13
  • 2
    I've never tried directly from the card slot built-in to the laptop. If that it specifically what you are trying to do then you might want to edit your question as you only ask about "MicroSD Card in a USB Reader". – Richard Mar 19 '18 at 10:31

Sure it'll probably work. But if this is going to be the one last holy grail chance to get the computer back up and running someday because Windows had a massive crash.

      • Then I'd buy an 8GB-16gb USB stick, make the key, label it, and put it in the safe. Done, and safe. Tasked checked off. My 2 cents.

PS - Or use DVD's or skip it and make an image after you install, and save, then back it up to a server.

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