Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Surface Pro 3 will not boot from USB

  1. #41

    Posts : 1
    Windows 8.1/Windows 10 Preview

    I stumbled upon this thread with the same problem as everyone else with no solution. After searching and trying different methods, I have found one that works for me. To be clear, I had the Windows 10 Technical Preview running on a Surface Pro 3. Below are the steps that I took and the resources I followed:

    Note: Please read through all of this before trying anything! I am not responsible for any mishaps!!!!

    1. Create a bootable UEFI USB drive - followed steps from Create bootable USB for UEFI | Windows 8 content from Windows IT Pro . I will repeat them here.
    a. run diskpart.exe in elevated mode
    b. list disk
    c. select disk <#>
    d. clean
    e. create partition primary <size=8192>
    (the article didn't specify size, but I received an error before manually setting the size when formatting (using a 64GB USB))
    f. select partition 1
    g. active
    h. format quick fs=fat32
    i. assign
    j. exit

    2. Mount the iso and copy the files to the USB drive
    3. Turn off the Surface
    4. Hold volume down and tap the power button
    5. Boots to USB
    6. Profit!

    Turns out I found a thread with all of this in one spot after typing this! No big deal. Option 2 is nearly identical to what I found and listed before.
    UEFI Bootable USB Flash Drive - Create in Windows

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #42

    Posts : 1
    windows 8.1

    I've got the same problem
    I installed Windows 10 and then going from the usb flash
    But one of the usb works on other devices

    The only way to come through the installation of DOS Boot Windows 10 or 8

    Installation and operation of the USB stick from DOS file


    will start install windows

    Unfortunately, the English translation of Google

    I am Egyptian
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #43

    Posts : 1
    Windows 10 Tech Preview

    Do you have a SD card installed? No boot from USB..

    Heads up for anyone trying to restore from USB after installing Windows 10 Tech Preview. I had issues as well trying to restore from my Windows 8.1 USB recovery image for my SP3. I would do the hard reset and then get a Boot Manager/Configuration (BCD) error.

    An hour with Tech Support, and they told me basically to send it in for a repair/exchange.

    I was going on a trip in a couple of days, so I wanted to give it one more shot. I removed my SD card and hard reset. I was then able to boot into restore mode without issue and could restore from my USB image.

    Since I do refreshes a lot, I tried one with my SD card again, and I got the BCD error again. My SD card is fine.

    Just give this a shot if you haven't already before you start pulling your hair out. Again, MS support did not mention this, and there is nothing in ANY of the documentation to state that the SD card should be removed to do a restore.

    I did contact MS support again with my ticket number, to let them know what I did to solve my problem, and that they should update their documentation to at least have people try this...
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #44

    Posts : 1
    Windows 8.1

    I can confirm what TandemUser has reported. I came here to let people know the same thing as I saw these posts before he posted his response and came back to let everyone know. I had the same issue with booting off the usb after installing the technical preview. Turns out all I had to do was remove the sd card for it to work - nothing to do with the technical preview.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #45

    Posts : 29
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit with Media Center

    I had the same problem trying to boot from 8.0 and 8.1 on aUSB install on my Pro 1 with the SD card installed.
    After removing my SD card I was able to do a clean installof 8.1.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #46

    Posts : 1
    Windows 8.1 and 10 Pro Technical Preview

    I have a Surface Pro 3 and it would not boot to any USB device so I could upgrade to Windows 10 Pro Technical Preview. The fix for me was to name the USB drive "BOOTME".

    Found the fix here:

    (option two) USB Drive - Boot from on Surface
    Last edited by Brink; 05 Mar 2015 at 10:31. Reason: updated link for the same with more info here
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #47

    I had a similar problem, just booting from usb period on a Surface Pro 3, was trying to boot a winpe with ghost so I could make an image of the tablet (only ever had windows 8.1 installed on it). After reading all the posts, and seeing that it worked for Wilamette, I think I figured out the problem.

    Usb thumbdrive formatted with ntfs, will not boot on surface pro 3, whether secure boot is enabled or not. Just doesn't boot, period.

    Usb thumbdrive formatted with fat32, boots on Surface Pro 3, Secure boot can be on or off either way.

    To prepare the thumbdrive, run a command prompt as Adminstrator, run diskpart:
    a. > diskpart
    b. DISKPART> list disk
    c. DISKPART > select disk 2 (or whichever disk is the external drive or the USB drive)
    d. DISKPART > clean
    e. DISKPART > create partition primary
    f. DISKPART > select partition 1
    g. DISKPART > active
    h. DISKPART > format fs=fat32 quick
    i. DISKPART > assign
    j. DISKPART > exit

    Once you format it this way, copy your boot image, unzip a bootable ISO file to it, and it should work using the press and hold the volume down button, press and release the power button, then release the volume down button once the Surface logo appears.

    If your thumbdrive is very large you may need to size down the partition as Wilamette showed.
    e. DISKPART > create partition primary <size=8192>
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #48

    Posts : 1
    windows 8.1 Pro

    format your usb to fat32, not ntfs and the now your usb should boot.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #49

    Posts : 2,614
    Windows 3.1 > Windows 10

    lot of steps to format a usb stick..

    I right click usb, format, fat32

    And without adding the setup files - the usb is not bootable anyway...

    The boot files copied from the setup ISO make the USB Bootable..
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #50

    Posts : 1
    Windows 10 Tech Preview

    Surface Pro Boot from USB

    Quote Originally Posted by KYHI View Post
    lot of steps to format a usb stick..

    I right click usb, format, fat32

    And without adding the setup files - the usb is not bootable anyway...

    The boot files copied from the setup ISO make the USB Bootable..
    See this post, I have tried this and successfully booted to the USB setup using Rufus, FAT32, and GPT partitioning, not MBR.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Surface Pro 3 will not boot from USB

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