By Lily / Last update May 18, 2021

Need to create bootable USB Windows Server 2008 R2

When your Windows Sever 2008 R2 computer crashes and cannot boot as normal, you can make a bootable USB Windows Server 2008 using ISO files. That can work as a recovery disk to help you restore your operating system, and then the computer can start up successfully.

Two ways to create Windows Server bootable USB drive

Now, we would like to share two different ways to create Windows Server 2008/2012/2016/2019 bootable USB drive for system recovery.

Way 1. With Windows USB/DVD Download Tool

To create bootable USB Windows Server 2008 R2 from ISO files, you can make use of Windows USB/DVD Tool provided by Microsoft. Just take these steps listed as below.

Warning: all data on the USB drive will be erased in the process of copying ISO files to it, so please make a backup if necessary.

Step 1. Download Windows USB/DVD Download Tool from Microsoft official website onto a working computer if your current computer fails to boot. Also download the .NET framework 2.0so that you can run Windows USB/DVD Download Tool successfully.

Step 2. Launch this tool. Select (Windows Server 2008) ISO files under "Source file" and click "Next".

Choose Source File

Step 3. Choose media type, USB device or DVD. Here we select "USB device".

Choose USB Device

Step 4. Now, select the USB drive you plan to use for creating Windows Server 2008 bootable drive. Then hit on "Begin copying".

Begin Copying

After everythingis done, you can insert this bootable USB drive into the computer with boot issues. To restore the Windows Server 2008 from a backup on the machine, perform the following steps:

Step 1. Boot the Server computer from the created bootable USB drive and press any key when prompted.

Step 2. Choose the proper language options, time and currency format, and keyboard layout and click "Next".

Step 3. Click "Repair your computer" on the "Install Windows" screen.

Step 4. Select "Restore your computer using a system image that you created earlier". And click "Next".

Restore System

Step 5. Select a system image backup and click "Next".

The most recent image is selected by default. But you can select another one by clicking "Select a system image". Then follow the prompts to restore your computer to an earlier state and get rid of boot problems.

However, the Windows Server 2008 R2 bootable recovery disk made by Windows USB/DVD Download Tool and system image can only work for restoring Windows Server 2008 R2. It won’t work across different versions of Windows Server. In other words, you cannot use a Windows Server 2008 recovery disk to restore Windows Server 2012, or use a Windows Server 2008 32-bit to repair a 64-bit computer for recovery.

Way 2. An advanced tool to make a bootable Windows Server USB

To avoid limitations of Windows USB/DVD Download Tool, here we would like to share you with an advanced tool called AOMEI Backupper Server. It can help you to make a versatile bootable Windows Server USB drive, with which you can easily restore all Windows Server OSes including 2003, 2008 (R2), 2011, 2012 (R2), 2016 and 2019.

Like the Windows USB/DVD Download Tool, the precondition for a successfully recovery is you have a Windows Server image backup. AOMEI Backupper Server system recovery is based on AOMEI Backupper system backup. So you must have at least one system image made by AOMEI Backupper. If you don’t have one and your current system is corrupted, you can create one on another working computer which runs the OS you prefer and then perform a “Universal Restore”.

Steps to create bootable USB Windows Server 2008 R2:

Step 1. Connect an empty USB drive to a working computer, download AOMEI Backupper Server Free Trial onto the computer.

Free Trial Win Server and PC
Secure Download

Step 2. Install and run AOMEI Backupper Server, select "Tools" and then "Create Bootable Media".

Create Bootable Meida

Step 3. Select Bootable Disc Type between "Linux" and "Windows PE". To create bootable USB Windows Server drive, go for the second one.

Winpe

Step 4. Now select bootable media. Here we choose "USB Boot Device" and click Next.

Choose Bootable Media

Note: If you plan to create bootable USB Windows Server 2008 R2 from ISO, choose "Export ISO files", but you need to burn ISO files to CD/VD via a burning tool after completion. Kind of complicated.

After the bootable Windows Server recovery disk is made, plug it into the computer with failing Windows Server and boot the machine from it.

To restore your Windows Server 2008 (R2), 2011, 2012 (R2), 2016 and 2019, do as follow:

Step 1. When you log in, you will be in the main console of AOMEI Backupper Server, click "Restore" and "Select Image File" to find your system image.

Select Image File Winpe

Step 2. In this screen, tick "Restore this system backup" and click "Next".

Restore Entire Backup

Step 3. Select destination location for the system image if needed, then click "Next".

Select Destination

Step 4. Preview the pending operation and tick "Universal Restore" to ensure secure boot after restoring. Then, click "Start Restore" if there is no mistake.

Preview Restore

✍Notes:

▸If the destination disk is an SSD drive, you can tick "SSD Alignment", which can boost its reading and writing performance.

▸ If the target disk is larger, click "Edit Partitions" to adjust the size of destination disk.

▸During a system restore, the program will prompt you to restart the computer, and then the restore operation will be completed under Restart mode.

Conclusion

Compared with Windows USB/DVD Download Tool, AOMEI Backupper Server is more flexible in helping to create bootable USB Windows Server 2008 R2 from ISO and perform Windows Server operating system recovery. Besides, it can also be used to create Windows 10/8/7/XP/Vista bootable USB for easy system recovery.