Microsoft have had the Consumer Preview of Windows 8 available for some time now to let users, reviewers and tech people have the chance to experiment with the new interface and decide what they think of the new system. As long as you have the space on your computer it’s possible to install it just fine and get to play. Of course there are many options on how to install, a clean install as the only operating system of course or a dual boot.
There are other issues too like how to install the operating system itself. If you don’t want to burn it onto a disc and you need to put it onto more than one computer and don’t want to download the ISO file on each machine it’s possible to put it onto a USB flash drive and actually install it from there.
Putting Windows 8 onto a Flash Drive
The first thing to do is of course to get the ISO of the consumer preview, this can be downloaded off the Microsoft site. Once you have this downloaded you will need a USB drive with at least 4GB of space on it, more would be better. Then you will need to download the Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool. Once these has been downloaded and installed open up the tool and select the ISO as the source file to use. You will then be asked for a media type to select, choose USB device and select the USB drive you want to install the ISO onto.
Once this has done (it will format the drive and then copy the installation files onto it) you will then be ready to use the drive to boot onto and then install the operating system on any machine. Be aware that you may need to change your boot order in the BIOS of your computer to make it boot from USB.
Once you’ve installed the Operating System and hopefully everything has gone fine you’ll then be able to play with the new user interface and try out your applications to make sure everything works and be ready for the official release. Be aware that the preview version will expire once Windows 8 is released so it’s advisable to keep your previous operating system available to move back to.