Want to reinstall Windows or install Linux on your computer? Try these tools.
So you've decided to give Linux a shot, and you've found a distribution that suits you. Or maybe you want to reinstall Windows because it's running slow, infected with viruses, or won't boot. No matter what kind of trouble your computer is having, here's a list of tools to do a clean install of Windows or Linux on your computer.
So, first thing first, if you want to install Windows 10, you can grab the ISO file on the Microsoft website and buy a license from there too. And if you want to install a Linux distribution, I invite you to take a look at the various distributions that exist or to take this simple test in order to choose the one that fits your needs the most. You can then download the ISO image of your choice on the distro's official website.
First, you may need to format or edit the partitions on your disk. GParted is probably the most reliable and well-known tool to do that on Linux. It's a GTK+ front-end to GNU Parted and the official GNOME Partition Editor application. It is used for creating, deleting, resizing, moving, checking, and copying partitions and the file systems on them. This is useful for creating space for new operating systems, reorganizing disk usage, copying data residing on hard disks, and mirroring one partition with another (disk imaging).
If you're already on Windows, you might want to try MiniTool Partition Wizard, which seems to be the best alternative to GParted. It's a partition manager software that supports 32/64 bit Windows Operating System and offers a free and paid version.
dd is a command-line utility for Unix and Unix-like operating systems whose primary purpose is to convert and copy files. Thus, you can easily use this command in your terminal to make a bootable USB flash drive from an ISO file.
If you want to use a tool with a GUI, Etcher is probably your best choice. It works on Windows, macOS and Linux, has a nice user interface, and is pretty fast as well. The program burns images only and can’t compete with more versatile products, but does at least warn you of this. We chose a Windows image, for instance, and Etcher warned us that extra processing was required to make the image bootable, and we should use a tool like Rufus instead. So, it's a great little tool for burning Linux images but if you're trying to burn a Windows 10 image on a USB flash drive, you might want to use Rufus (Windows), Boot Camp (macOS) or WinUSB (Linux) instead.
If WinUSB doesn't work for you, take a look at this subject, it might help you.
Like said above, Rufus is a small utility that helps format and create bootable USB flash drives. It's a great solution if you're on Windows and want to burn a Windows ISO image on a USB flash drive.
On the other hand, Boot Camp is your best choice if you're on a macOS system. It allows you to create a bootable Windows (7, 8 or 10) USB flash drive easily that works on any computer.
Finally, if you're on Linux and want to install Windows on a computer, you should try WinUSB, which is – as its name implies – a tool that enables you to create your own USB stick Windows installer from an ISO image or a real DVD.
To resume, if you're on a macOS, Windows, or Linux computer and want to install Linux, use the
dd command line or Etcher. And if you want to install Windows, use Rufus, Boot Camp, or WinUSB depending on the OS you're on.
If you've successfully installed/reinstalled Windows on your computer, you can save time by using Ninite to install your favorite software easily and quickly.
On macOS, you can use Get Mac Apps – which is pretty great – to install multiple macOS apps automatically with one command.
On Linux, there is no real alternative to Ninite but you can use apt-get (or another package manager like pacman or rpm) to install multiple software at once from the command line.
With these tools, you should be able to easily install Linux or Windows on your computer, no matter what operating system you're using. If you think we missed an important tool or some information about a tool we listed, feel free to tell us, we're not perfect!
PS: I haven't mentioned UNetbootin in this list because many users – myself included – are having trouble creating a bootable USB flash drive with this tool recently (just look at the reviews on the UNetbootin's HyperVTX page).
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