How to Install a Recovery Disk Without a CD-ROM Drive on a Netbook

Written by quinn marshall
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How to Install a Recovery Disk Without a CD-ROM Drive on a Netbook
All the CDs in the world won't help if you don't have a CD drive. (Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images)

Netbooks have many advantages, such as portability and low energy consumption. However, they also have one major disadvantage; most of them lack an optical drive. Although most programs, music and movies can be downloaded from the Internet, operating system and recovery disks are shipped with the netbook on either a CD or DVD. If your netbook becomes corrupted--and you don't have a USB CD/DVD drive--you can run the recovery disc from a flash drive.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Things you need

  • 4GB USB memory stick
  • Computer with CD-ROM drive

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  1. 1

    Borrow a computer with a CD-ROM drive. Insert the recovery disc into the computer.

  2. 2

    Download WinToFlash, a program that makes a USB memory drive bootable. Install WinToFlash onto the computer with a CD drive, then plug your memory stick into one of the computer's USB ports.

  3. 3

    Launch WinToFlash. Select "Flash Stick" as the USB device type, and choose "USB-HDD" as the format type. Choose "NTFS" as the file system. Click "Select" next to "Setup Files Path" and choose the letter assigned to the computer's CD drive, such as "D:\". Click "Select" next to "USB Drive" and select the letter assigned to your flash drive, such as "E:\". Click "Create" and wait for the program to finish. Close WinToFlash and remove your flash drive.

  4. 4

    Plug the flash drive into your netbook. Turn the netbook on by pressing the power button. Enter BIOS by pressing the key indicated on the boot screen. Select "Boot Sequence" and move "USB" above "Internet HDD" using the arrow keys. Select "Save and Exit." The netbook will restart, booting from the flash drive instead of the internal hard drive. Select "Recovery Disc" from the boot menu; the name may vary depending on your disc.

  5. 5

    Follow the recovery disc prompts, to repair your netbook's operating system.

Tips and warnings

  • It is easier and less time consuming to purchase a USB CD-ROM drive. Plug the drive into a USB port on your netbook, insert the recovery disc and follow the on-screen prompts.

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