How To Create A Bootable openSUSE USB Drive

This guide will show you how to create a bootable openSUSE USB drive using Windows.

Once the USB drive has been created you will be able to try all of the features of openSUSE. The USB drive can also be used to replace all versions of Windows with openSUSE and you will be able to dual boot Windows with openSUSE, however, the installation guides will be covered in a separate article.

The steps for creating an openSUSE USB drive are as follows:

  1. Download openSUSE
  2. Download ImageUSB from Passmark software
  3. Create the openSUSE USB drive using ImageUSB

How To Download A Live Version Of openSUSE

Screenshot of download page
openSUSE Live ISO.


The main download is a 4.7 gigabyte DVD ISO which is a bit overkill for just trying openSUSE.

Fortunately, there are a number of live ISO options available. To view them click on the link that reads click here to display these alternate versions.

The two main live ISOs available are for GNOME and KDE.

It is up to you which one you decide to choose.

This series has a lot of GNOME based articles so it might be preferable to choose the GNOME version

A list of choices will now appear with various download methods such as bittorrent, direct link, metalink or pick mirror.

You can also choose between a 32-bit or 64-bit version of openSUSE.

If you choose the default options you will get a 64-bit version downloaded via a direct link.

How To Download ImageUSB To Create An openSUSE USB Drive

Screenshot of download ImageUSB
Use ImageUSB To Create openSUSE USB.

To be able to create a bootable openSUSE USB drive using Windows you will need to download the software ImageUSB from Passmark Software.

The software is free to use.

How To Create An openSUSE USB Using ImageUSB

Screen shot of writing an image to USB
Create openSUSE USB.

Insert a blank USB drive into a USB port on your computer.

To run ImageUSB double click on the zip file downloaded in the previous step and run the file ImageUSB.exe.

The ImageUSB drive is easy to follow and requires 4 simple steps:

  1. Choose your USB drive
  2. Select the action to be performed
  3. Select the image
  4. Write the image to the USB drive

In step 1 check the box next to the drive you wish to write the openSUSE USB to.

Step 2 has a number of options which include:

  • Write image to USB drive
  • Create image from USB drive
  • Zero the USB drive
  • Format the USB drive

If you have inserted a blank USB drive you should choose the option to write an image to the USB drive. If you haven't, choose the format the USB drive option.

Note that if you have a USB drive with an image on it already, you can use the Create image from USB drive option to turn the USB back to an ISO.

Click the Browse button in step 3 and locate the openSUSE ISO image you downloaded earlier.

Finally, click the Write button to copy the image to the USB drive.

A warning will appear with the details of the drive you have chosen and the image that will be copied to the USB drive.

If you have chosen the correct options and you are happy to continue click the Yes button.

The software likes to make doubly sure that you chose the correct options so another popup appears asking whether you are really sure you want to continue.

Click Yes.

After a very short period of time, the USB drive will be created.

If you are using a computer with a standard BIOS you should be able to reboot your computer and boot straight into openSUSE. (As long as the boot order has a USB drive before the hard drive).

If you are using a computer with UEFI you will be able to boot into openSUSE by holding down the shift key and rebooting your computer. A UEFI boot menu will appear with an option to Use a device. When the sub-menu appears, choose the EFI USB Device.

openSUSE will now begin to boot. It takes a fair amount of time to do so and patience is required.