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I have a Lenovo Thinkpad that was running Mint Linux using full-disk encryption. I downloaded the Windows 10 ISO from Microsoft and used whatever Mint uses to create bootable USB devices to put the Windows 10 ISO on a Seagate Backup Plus Slim. I tried to boot from USB using the Lenovo boot menu but the computer went to the same Mint disk encryption log-in screen as usual. Inside Mint, I deleted the partitions on the hard drive and rebooted. Now when I boot it goes to the Grub rescue command prompt.

I'm guessing that either the tool I used in Mint to create a bootable USB device didn't do the trick. Or maybe the Windows 10 ISO isn't bootable unless you use Microsoft's media creation tool itself?? If that's the case, then how can I make a bootable Windows 10 USB device without using Windows in the first place?? :-)

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  • "Or maybe the Windows 10 ISO isn't bootable unless you use Microsoft's media creation tool itself?" - yes, most ISOs aren't. "how can I make a bootable Windows 10 USB device without using Windows in the first place?" - have you tried to google this? – gronostaj Nov 9 '20 at 13:34
  • I did, yes, and it looks like you do have to use a tool to make a bootable device using the Windows 10 ISO. But I thought I did that from within Mint using whatever USB creation tool it ships with. Either it failed to perform the job correctly or . . . something else I'm unaware of. I presume it's not the fault of the USB device since BIOS seems to detect it just fine. – hourback Nov 9 '20 at 13:38
  • I'm going to try recreating bootable device using a different tool. – hourback Nov 9 '20 at 13:39
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    You have to use a tool designed specifically to support Windows ISOs, like WoeUSB. – gronostaj Nov 9 '20 at 13:40
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    @JW0914 They are bootable as optical media images, which is what ISO was intended for. But they are not bootable if interpreted as a raw disk image, ie. they don't have a proper MBR, GPT or ESP. Modern Linux ISOs are oftentimes modified to be both a valid ISO and a valid disk image, so one can dd them directly to a flash drive and boot them without additional tools. Windows ISOs don't support that, which can lead to confusion for Linux folks. – gronostaj Nov 9 '20 at 15:17

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