Rufus is one of the most popular Windows utilities for making bootable USB sticks. However, if you want to generate a bootable USB for Linux or macOS, Rufus is not available on these operating systems. Sometimes, Rufus fails to function and is unable to build a bootable USB. Furthermore, you may look for other functionality that Rufus does not provide. Don’t be concerned. Rufus is not the only program available for making bootable USB sticks. There are a few additional top Rufus alternatives that you may utilize on Linux operating systems. Today, we’ll talk about open source or free tools for generating bootable discs on Linux, Windows, and macOS.
Best Rufus Alternatives for Windows, Linux and macOS
In this section, we’ve selected some Rufus alternatives that run quickly and don’t slow down the system. Apart from that, we have highlighted software for Windows, Linux, Ubuntu, and macOS. Furthermore, we chose the programs so that you may build macOS bootable discs from a Windows system and vice versa. Similarly, you may make a Windows bootable disc from a Linux workstation. So, next time you face problems like Rufus for Linux not available, use these best alternatives on your system.
1. Universal USB Installer
Universal USB Installer is a simple software for installing an operating system onto a USB device with the following features:
- You can store user files after rebooting by enabling a persistent storage configuration.
- For a clean installation, it may format fat32 flash drives.
- Universal USB works faster compared to other utilities that use the DD command.
- On completing the procedure, you can get back the lost disc space.
- It has an easy-to-use UI and is more effective than Rufus.
- This is an excellent program for flashing Windows and Linux images.
- The disadvantage of this tool is that it is not available for macOS.
- Another drawback is you cannot install several distributions to the same disc using this tool.
2. YUMI (Your Universal Multiboot Installer)
YUMI, expanded as Your Universal Multiboot Installer, is a multiboot USB builder that allows you to generate multiboot bootable USB flash sticks along with other characteristics listed below:
- This tool contains several operating systems, antivirus programs, penetration testing tools, and other software.
- This tool utilizes syslinux to boot extracted distributions saved on a USB flash drive.
- Also, you can revert to grub boot multiple ISO files from USB, if necessary.
- This software is one of the best Rufus alternatives because it retains every content in a separate multiboot folder.
- Though it works similar to Universal USB Installer, it allows you to utilize the USB’s remaining storage space.
- In addition, it allows you to install different operating systems on a single USB stick.
- It allows you to use Linux and Windows ISO files to build a bootable USB stick.
- Similar to Universal USB Installer, it supports Windows and Linux system images and uses the syslinux bootloader instead of grub to boot ISO files from USB ports.
Also Read: How to Create Bootable Windows 11 USB Drive
Etcher is a comprehensive software that works with all popular operating systems and consists of the following features:
- This tool is available on macOS with a basic interface.
- It supports ISO, DMG, and IMG system images.
- You can validate the system images and removable drive before flashing using the Image Validation feature.
- You will easily save time since you don’t have to write pictures on corrupt USB drives.
- The tool is open source and entirely free.
- Though the tool is quick in flashing pictures, it is not on par with Rufus, which is the only drawback
FlashBoot is an excellent utility for installing or reinstalling Windows from scratch and is considered one of the best for the following reasons:
- The tool is available in two versions: Free and Pro ($29.95).
- Using the Free edition, you can make a fresh bootable Windows copy on a USB drive, but you can clone an existing system using the Pro version.
- As a result, reinstalling everything on a new computer saves time because no data, settings, or programs are lost.
- This tool also serves as a portable Windows backup.
- You can use these best alternatives entry to do your work with ease.
- It supports a variety of Windows versions and is self-contained.
- It supports custom content and EXE files.
Next on the list of Rufus alternatives is Easy2Boot, or E2B, which has over a million downloads with the following features:
- It supports three bootable menu systems: the original E2B solution as Easy2Boot, agFM, a boot option for Legacy/MBR and UEFI32/UEFI64 with Secure boot bypass, and Ventoy for E2B, which is based on Ventoy.
- Compared to other tools, E2B is successful in booting recent Linux ISO images.
- E2B uses its algorithm to flash bootable discs faster and update new Linux than other software.
- Additionally, the tool is free and allows you to create bootable Windows and Mac OSX images.
- The Menu system of this tool uses NTFS and grub4dos+scripts.
- You can use Easy2Boot v2 to add a second partition that runs agFM grub2 for UEFI-booting.
- You don’t have to reformat your E2B USB drive when upgrading it to the newest version.
- It takes less time to copy a single huge ISO file to a USB device than to copy separate hundreds of smaller files from the ISO.
- In addition to these features, you can expand the USB drive with your documents, programs, portable apps, etc.
- This tool supports ISO and payload file-formats number over 340 and devices including USB HDD/SSD drives and USB Flash drives (NTFS is recommended).
Ventoy is the best alternative when you face the Rufus for Linux not available issue. It has the following features:
- It comprises ISO, WIM, IMG, VHD, and EFI format flashing image files and can copy them to the USB device.
- Using this tool, you can aim at devices like USB, Local Disk, SSD, and SD cards.
- Furthermore, it provides various features, such as persistence support and UEFI Secure Boot.
- It is compatible with numerous Linux, Windows, ChromeOS, and Unix systems because it has been tested with over 700 ISO files.
- It utilizes the image file(s) directly rather than extracting them to the USB device.
- You can store multiple ISO images on a single device and choose which image to boot.
- It supports and works on various boot technologies, including persistence, x86 Legacy BIOS, MBR and GPT partition types, and different UEFI boot techniques.
- More importantly, you can utilize ISO files bigger than 4 GB.
7. Deepin Boot Maker
Deepin, developed by the Deepin Technology Team, creates deepin OS boot discs in USB devices for various functions, making it one of best Rufus alternatives.
- It is a Linux operating system and is a widely used Linux distribution among Chinese computer users.
- It only supports Deepin OS versions for installation.
- To use this tool, you must first download the Deepin ISO.
- Along with this tool, the development team provides other tools, such as installer, store, driver manager, and a few more.
- These tools have been tested, and you can access them within the Deepin ecosystem.
- It supports Windows Hello and is available in multiple languages.
8. Win32 Disk Imager
Another on the list is the popular Windows-specific software called Win32 Disk Imager, with the following features:
- The tool has version 0.9 that can flash ancient operating systems like Windows XP and Vista.
- This tool is also compatible with recent operating systems, such as Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, and Ubuntu.
- In addition to this, this tool supports UEFI boot functionality for the NTFS and FAT32 file systems.
- The tool is effective for flashing low-level utilities.
- This Windows tool requires more time than Rufus to make a bootable drive.
- Another drawback is that the tool is not compatible with desktop operating systems.
Also Read: How to Boot Windows 10 into Recovery Mode
One of the simple and excellent too on the list of Rufus alternatives for Windows is RMPrepUSB which has the following aspects:
- This tool is another option to install Windows, Linux distributions like Ubuntu, Linux Mint, or other well-known Linux distributions using custom installation discs designed by you.
- Also, this tool provides rapid testing, partitioning, formatting, boot manager installation, and many other tasks.
- Additionally, you can create multiboot USBs and test them using RMPrepUSB.
- The tool is efficient and portable.
- You can install or fix the boot code
- Also, you can delete the read-only and write-protect drive flags.
- When formatted as FAT32, SD cards can perform up to 10% quicker.
- More importantly, you can inspect drives for fake sizes.
- Also, you can run QEMU in 32-bit MBR mode with full write access to boot from a USB disc.
10. LinuxLive USB Creator
Next on the list is the free and open-source LiveLinux USB Creator program for Windows.
- This tool allows you to create a bootable, portable, and virtualized USB stick that runs your chosen Linux distribution.
- It is compatible with several Linux distributions.
- Also, this features an automated integrity check tool to look for damaged ISO files automatically.
- You can test Linux distributions without having to restart the Windows computer using the integrated virtualization feature.
- Additionally, you can make live Linux persistent USBs with LiveLinux USB creator.
- The SmartClean feature helps you to remove any prior live USB installation completely.
- Another notable feature is SmartDownload, which downloads any Linux distribution quickly.
- You can use the remaining USB capacity for storage, making it one of the best Rufus alternatives.
- This tool is simple and efficient.
- The feature Portable VirtualBox allows you to run Linux inside Windows natively.
- Also, you can mark newly created files as hidden.
- The most significant advantage is installing it without causing harm, such as formatting the device.
Also Read: How to Change Windows 10 Boot Logo
This Windows-based software is named PowerISO and includes a tonne of other handy capabilities, as listed below:
- Using this tool, you can mount discs, create virtual drives, edit, compress, extract, and convert ISO files.
- The tool also offers other features, such as context menus and shell integration.
- The tool supports every CD, DVD, and BD-ROM image file format, including ISO, BIN, NRG, CDI, DAA, and others.
- Overall, PowerISO is among the top Rufus alternatives for flashing Windows OS.
- The tool performs quicker compared to Rufus.
UNetbootin is one of the best Rufus alternatives available for Windows, Linux, and macOS. As Rufus for Linux is not available, you can use this tool as an alternative. This tool has the following characteristics:
- This open-source software can be used to install OS systems on bare metal PCs.
- This tool uses a USB stick that has been formatted in FAT32 rather than a DVD.
- This tool is available in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions.
- You can immediately download the most recent ISO image of each operating system.
- Simultaneously, you can create bootable USB devices for different Linux distributions and BSD operating systems, including CentOS, Kubuntu, Debian, Elive, DreamLinux, CloneZilla, OpenSUSE, LinuxMint, FreeBSD, NetBSD, Fedora, Gentoo, Puppy Linux, Arch Linux, Zenwalk, and many others.
- You can use the ISO image directly in the tool.
- Apart from this, the software supports many recovery and administration tools, such as Backtracks, Ophcrack, Dr. Web Antivirus, System Recovery CD, Parted Magic, and Kaspersky Rescue Disk.
- The tool performs at a faster pace when flashing images.
Also Read: How to Convert IMG to ISO
13. Media Creation Tool by Windows
This software in our list designed by Microsoft expressly for the smooth installation of Windows 10 on PCs is the Media Creation Tool.
- You can download Windows 10 installation tool from the Microsoft website, and an automatically create bootable USB drive from the tool.
- The tool finds the appropriate configuration and downloads the most recent Windows 10 ISO image based on the architecture of your PC without any manual intervention.
- The only drawback is that it requires a little longer to make a bootable USB device than Rufus.
- It is quite faster and more user-friendly.
- It does not affect the performance of the system.
14. Diskmaker X
For users of macOS, Diskmaker X is among the most acceptable Rufus alternatives and has the following features:
- You can easily create a bootable macOS image and store it on a USB stick.
- The process is simple. The Spotlight feature locates the installation file. It detects the USB disc, flashes the system image, runs the program quickly, and generally functions as intended.
- In addition to this, Diskmaker X supports Mojave. Simply put, this software is the one to choose if you’re seeking a Rufus substitute for macOS.
Also Read: 20 Best Lightweight Linux Distros of 2022
15. Raspberry Pi Imager
Raspberry Pi Imager is the official imager software created by the Raspberry Pi foundation. It is also another alternative for Linux users as Rufus for Linux is not available. It consist of various features that are listed below:
- This program is compatible with Windows, Linux, and Mac operating systems.
- You can install Raspberry Pi OS, explicitly built for Linux operating system, using Raspberry Pi Imager.
- This operating system stored on SD cards acts as a bootable disc to connect to their Raspberry Pi device.
- You can choose image files from a disc or download them from the Internet to download a list of compatible Linux distributions.
- In addition, it can be formatted as FAT32 or install additional applications like EEPROM recovery.
- This tool develops a graphical user interface to create a bootable SD card.
- The tool also allows you to flash custom OS images.
Dd is a command-line utility for Linux or Mac users. It is an alternative for Linux users as Rufus for Linux is not available. It is possibly the most effective tool on our list, consisting of the following features:
- Dd, expanded as disc destroyer, allows you to duplicate the image of one disc onto another.
- This tool operates by setting the locations of the input and output drives.
- You can also use this tool to perform various tasks, such as data conversions, block device wiping, hard drive backups, compression, and block skipping.
- This command-line tool is available on Ubuntu and any macOS version by default.
- Always double-check the right input and output locations and hash integrity of the downloaded ISO file to avoid damaging the target disc. Once confirmed, proceed as follows to start the flash process:
- This tool can read and/or write directly from/to various files.
- You can perform data conversion, such as converting ASCII to EBCDIC encoding.
Also Read: How to Install GCC on Ubuntu
17. MultiBoot USB
Another on the list of best Rufus alternatives is MultiBoot USB, with the following characteristics:
- This tool can install several Linux distributions on a single USB device.
- It is available for Windows and Linux platforms.
- The tool starts to add ISO files to the disc as soon as it identifies them.
- This program does not format your USB disc upon installation.
- The unique feature of this tool is testing live boots with the integrated QEMU emulator, which tests the bootable device without restarting your device.
- Syslinux and GRUB bootloaders are both supported for installation.
- The operating systems are unaffected even when installing or uninstalling other OS on the same device.
- Because Linux and Windows share the same code base, development is kept to a minimum.
- It can be used, redistributed, and modified by users because it is open-source software.
18. Windows USB/DVD Tool
Next on the list is the Windows USB/DVD Tool offered by Microsoft, which is one of the best on the list for the following reasons:
- This free and compact program is used to make bootable installation media for the Windows operating system.
- It is a Microsoft-approved program for Windows that may be used to create installation discs for Windows 10, 8, or 7.
- It is an easy-to-use program for creating bootable USB drives.
- It doesn’t consume a lot of RAM of the system.
For Ubuntu and other Linux distributions, WoeUSB is the best alternative among the others due to the following reasons:
- You may use the Linux operating system to produce a Windows USB installer.
- WoeUSB and WoeUSBGUI are the available apps in the bundle.
- WoeUSB is an easy-to-use command-line tool.
- This tool uses Linux commands to make a bootable Windows installation USB device from an ISO image.
- Based on WxWidgets, WoeUSBGUI is a graphical user interface for WoeUSB.
- All Windows images are supported by this open-source tool, but it is limited to Linux operating systems.
- This tool flashes images at a faster pace.
20. Windows 7 USB Tool
Windows 7 USB Tool is one of the best Rufus alternatives for Windows 7, 8, and XP, consisting of the following features:
- As the name implies, this application enables you to create a Windows bootable disc for Windows 7, 8, and XP.
- The process is simple, where you have to select the ISO image and the removable storage media.
- Windows USB Tool flashes system pictures quickly due to its lightness.
Also Read: Fix Windows 10 Won’t Boot From USB
21. Fedora Media Writer
The Fedora group developed Fedora Media Writer as an open-source alternative to Rufus for Linux systems. As Rufus for Linux is not available, you can use this tool instead.
- It is mainly used for flashing Fedora Distros and spins on a USB stick.
- Additionally, this bootable media maker tool provides an additional custom option.
- In addition to Fedora, it is also available for Linux, Windows, and macOS
- Using the Flatpak universal package manager, this USB media generator may be installed on Linux distributions outside Fedora.
- You can download the photos and save them to a USB flash disc.
- Also, any other ISO images (non-Fedora) can be written on a USB stick.
- You can format a USB stick and recover a flash drive.
If you find the Rufus for Linux not available issue, you can use these best alternatives entry; in such a case, TransMac is a good option.
- TransMac will format the disc in the APFS file format once the bootable USB drive is inserted.
- Due to the DMG image’s encryption and the other file system, the flashing procedure takes a little longer.
- You may create a macOS bootable disc on a Windows system, and the software generally functions.
- The drawbacks of this tool are the performance is a little slower compared to Rufus, and it’s rather costly.
- The Apple File System is supported.
Also Read: How to Boot Mac in Safe Mode
23. SUSE Image Writer
Last on the list of Rufus alternatives is SUSE Studio ImageWriter with the following aspects:
- It is an approved Live USB generating tool for SUSE and OpenSUSE Linux distributions.
- RPM packages for Redhat and CentOS are available on its website.
- You may also use it to make ISO USB sticks for Ubuntu and other Linux distributions as Rufus for Linux is not available.
- You can simply drag and drop the ISO image, making the process simple.
- This software comes with a disk imaging tool.
- UEFI support is available with the conversion from USB to FAT and NTFS formats.
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Rufus has always been the best option for Windows users when USB bootable drives are to be created but seeing the need and vast usability of other platforms with Windows. There have to be competitive Rufus alternatives. Hence, we tried to mention some of them in the above article. Please share your valuable feedback in the comment section below and your experiences with any of these or any other tool we couldn’t cover here. We are, as always, just fingertips away from being reached to solve further problems and queries experienced by you regarding the topic.