Rufus is a solution that is used to create and format bootable USB flash drives, like USB keys, pen drives memory sticks etc.
Rufus is especially useful for situations where you need to work on systems that do not have an operating system installed.
It can also be used for running low-level utilities, flashing a bios and creating media to be installed from a USB drive. For example, installing an OS to Raspberry Pi can be done with Rufus.
Rufus may be a small utility, however, according to their website, it is two times faster than Universal USB Installer, UNetbootin and Windows 7 USB download tool.
The main downside to Rufus however is that it works only on Windows operating systems. Moreover, people might be looking for extra features and have other options as well for Linux or MAC OS computers.
If you want to create USB bootable media, then you must check out the following popular Rufus alternative solutions so you can compare their features and choose the one that best fits your needs.
Note that the list below is in no particular order.
Table of Contents
PowerISO is a powerful utility that enables you to create media on CDs, DVDs, and Bds, and you can extract, open, create, burn, compress, edit, split, encrypt and convert ISO files.
PowerISO can process CD, DVD and BD files in practically in any format, and you can do anything you need with your disk image files or ISO files.
This tool even allows you to burn and rip audio CDs in all popular formats, such as MP3, APE, FLAC, BIN and WMA.
With PowerISO, you can mount your ISO files to virtual drives. You can convert all ISO files to image formats and vice versa.
Moreover, it is also a good Rufus alternative because you can easily create bootable USB drives with it in addition to the other features.
UNetbootin is a tool that enables you to format and create live USB bootable drives for Ubuntu as well as other Linux distributions without needing to burn files on CDs.
This program offers two choices. You can either download a Linux distribution straight out of the box, or you can use your own ISO file. UNetbootin provides support for the following distributions:
- Arch Linux
- Linux Mint
- Damn Small Linux
- Sabayon Linux
- Frugalware Linux
- Puppy Linux
UNetbootin also enables you to install other distributions as this tool provides support for them as well.
If you need to create a Multisystem Bootable USB drive, then YUMI is just the tool you need. YUMI (Your Universal Multiboot Installer) enables you to create Multisystem Bootable USB drives.
With this utility, you can effortlessly create a Multiboot drive containing many ISO files. You can use YUMI to boot Windows and Linux Installers, Linux Operating Systems, antivirus utilities, backup, diagnostic tools, disc cloning, penetration testing, and a whole lot more.
Along with using your bootable drive to store bootable files, YUMI also allows you to use your drive for normal storage purposes. Additionally, you can install Linux from a flash drive onto a hard drive.
balenaEtcher allows you to flash operating systems effortlessly and flawlessly to USB drives and SD cards.
balenaEtcher has validated flashing capability which will keep you from flashing media to corrupted drives and wasting time.
Additionally, selecting the drive you want to work with is simple, enabling you to completely avoid accidentally wiping your whole drive clean.
The interface for this utility is visually appealing, and this tool is open sourced. Many love and recommend balenaEtcher because it works across platforms, making it available for everyone to use.
Universal USB Installer is a utility that enables you to create Live Linux Bootable USB drives. This tool enables you to make a USB Bootable drive from a Linux distribution, Windows Installer, Antivirus Scanner, Disk Cloning Software, Windows To Go or any System utility that can be put on flash drives.
Universal USB Installer is simple to use. All that you need to do is choose the distribution from the list, Find the ISO file that you want, select the flash drive that you want to target and then select Create.
Once you have finished following these steps, you will have a flash Drive that you can run that contains the operating system or tool that you have selected.
The Universal USB Installer enables you to use your flash drive as a traditional storage device as this tool does not rewrite the file system.
If you want to add multiple distributions and tools, then Universal USB Installer is not the tool you need as Universal USB Installer does not allow you to boot multiple ISO files from the same flash drive.
RMPrepUSB is a Windows 32-bit tool that you can use to partition and format a USB drive. The RMPrepUSB tool will enable you to do the following:
- Clear any read-only drive flags that may be present
- Install or repair boot code
- Test for false size drives
- Format SD cards as FAT32 which will allow them to run up to ten percent faster
- Fix a variety of USB boot issues
- Includes the RMPartUSB.exe command line utility
- Contains a sector editor
- Can run a 32-bit MBR Emulator which can boot from a USB drive with complete write access
WonderISO is a full-spectrum ISO burner tool that will enable you to extract, burn, edit and create ISO image files.
The WonderISO tool is highly favored as it allows you to bypass selecting multiple settings and options, making it one of the easiest tools to use.
This utility allows you to make any USB device bootable from a Linux and windows ISO.
Since WonderISO is a stand-alone program, you will not have to install any additional components to operate it. The WonderISO program works on both Mac and Windows computers.
This option works exclusively on MAC OS computers.
DiskMaker X is an application built with AppleScript that you can use with many versions of the Mac OS to build a bootable drive from the Mac OS installer program.
This installer program is the same one that you download from Apple’s app store. Once you launch DiskMaker X, the program uses Spotlight to search for the OS installer.
When the OS installer is found, you will receive an alert that tells you that DiskMaker X can create a bootable installer disk for you.
This process can be completed in a few clicks. After the installer disk has been created, you can use it to install the OS on a reformatted hard drive without having to download the full installer.
MultiBootUSB is a utility that works on both Windows and Linux, and it is designed to create multi boot Linux distributions on removable media.
You can install as many distributions as you wish, provided you have enough room on your disk. Best of all, you can install distributions without having to erase any media already on the disk.
MultiBootUSB also provides the option to uninstall distributions. When using MultiBootUSB, you can boot ISO images directly without needing to boot your system, and you can boot up USB bootable drives without rebooting as well.
Note that the Windows version of MultiBootUSB is not a stand-alone program. You need to install MultiBootUSB after downloading it.
FlashBoot is a software utility that enables you to install an instance of the Windows operating system onto a USB storage drive, and you can boot any PC from that drive.
If you have purchased a new computer or hard drive and need to transfer an image of your operating system from the old computer or hard drive to the new one, FlashBoot enables you to do this effortlessly.
When you make the transfer, you can move all your programs, settings, documents, games and preferences to your new PC or drive.
If you also want to create a second virtual work environment that you can use while on the go, you can clone your operating system and run it from a USB thumb drive independently from your main operating system.
Ventoy is an open-source utility that can be used to create a bootable USB drive for ISO, IMG, WIM and EFI VHD(x) files.
When using Ventoy, you do not have to reformat the disk repeatedly. All you need to do with Ventoy is to copy the files directly onto the USB drive and then boot straight from the drive.
You can copy many files simultaneously. When you boot from your drive, Ventoy will provide you with a boot menu for you to choose which files you which to boot. Ventoy supports most operating systems and virtual machines.
Easy2Boot is a feature-rich utility that enables you to boot to practically any system from one USB drive. Easy2Boot includes three different menu systems, Ventoy, agFM/grubfm and E2B grub4dos.
This utility uses a generic booting method, making it a more preferred choice over Ventoy. Because Easy2Boot uses a generic booting method, there is no need to update this utility when a Linux distribution does not work.
Easy2Boot supports Secure UEFI64 booting unless it is blacklisted by UEFI DBx in BIOS. If blacklisted, secure booting is disabled temporarily, allowing all ISO files to boot.
With Easy2Boot you can create a partition image from other bootable USB drives, and you can switch to a partitioned image and boot from it.
The file types that Easy2Boot supports include WIM, ISO, IMA, FI, IMG, VHDx and HFS.
UltraISO is a utility that allows you to back up DVDs and CDs to your computer’s hard drive as ISO images, and you can make ISO images from folders and files that are already on your hard drive.
You can extract folders and files from ISO images, and you can also add folders and files to ISO images.
UltraISO also gives you the ability to copy ISO images as virtual DVD and CD drives, and you can run these programs directly from there.
You can convert up to 30 DVD and CD image file formats, allowing for the utmost flexibility. UltraISO enables you to burn folders and files to DVDs and CDs as well as create USB bootable drives just like Rufus.
- 14 Best Free Junk File Removal and System Cleaner Tools
- Top iMovie Equivalent Apps for Windows 10 PC/Laptop (Free&Paid)
- 14 Free USB – Flash Drive – SD Card – Formatter Tools for FAT, NTFS etc
- Comparison of Cryptomator vs Boxcryptor for Cloud Data Encryption
- 15 Internet Download Manager (IDM) Alternatives (free&paid)