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MichaelA freeware boot manager used to create bootable USB drives

A review by Michael

Rufus is an open-source portable USB Boot Manager application, compatible with Microsoft Windows. This small utility was released on December 11, 2011, and was developed by Pete Batard. This free application allows users to create and format bootable Live USBs or USB Flash Drives which can be directly started in DOS and other systems. Initially, Rufus was created designed to replace the HP USB Disk Storage Format Tool which had the main purpose to create DOS bootable USB flash drives, but it now has multiple new functionalities.

How to use Rufus

To configure the program, it only takes a few seconds. First, users have to insert the device they want to format into the program. After that, they have to mark the desired options in terms of how they want their bootable drive to load, and the last thing they have to do is to hit the “start” button. In a few seconds, the bootable USB will be ready to use.

Main features

Supported files

Rufus can work with a variety of bootable .iso files, like Windows installation and Linux distribution .iso files, and raw disk image files (even if they are compressed).

Install a Bootloader

When needed, Rufus can install a bootloader like GRUB or SYSLINUX onto the USB Flash Drive to make it bootable.

Windows to Go

Rufus got rid of the third-party usage when a user wants to install and run Windows 10, Windows 8.1, and Windows 8 from a USB flash drive. Besides the fact that Rufus allows users to create a Windows to Go bootable media, it also gives them the option to install FreeDOS or MS-DOS onto a flash drive.

Format Flash Drives

Rufus can format flash drives such as NTFS, FAT, FAT32, exFAT, ReFS, and UDF filesystems. It can also be used to compute SHA-1, SHA-256, and MD5 hashes of the presently chosen image.

User Interface

The user interface of Rufus is simple one, and keeps everything organized by using cascading menus. It has a low learning curve for beginners and has all of its options accessible.

Dozens of supported languages

Rufus supports over 40 different languages: English, Français, Italiano, Magyar, Portugues, Svenska, and so on. Also, the developer encourages anyone who wants to translate this application in another language to send the translation onto the application’s web page.


After a few tests for loading Windows 7 x64, Ubuntu 11.10 x86, and Slackware 13.37 x86, Rufus finished first the creation of these operating systems USB installation drives from ISOs considerably faster than its competitors. It is twice as fast as Windows 7 USB download tool, UNetbootin, or the Universal USB Installer.


Rufus is a small and simple USB booter application, but at the same time offers users everything they need to format and create bootable USB flash drives. It is an excellent utility with great features, which can help you save a lot of time.

Pete Batard
User rating
0/50 ratings
Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10