win10iot_sd_formatter_header I just finished my Windows 10 IoT SD-Formatter tool. The idea behind this is to simplify the process of formatting an SD card by using the dism.exe tools, to be able to install the current Windows 10 Preview Images on a SD card. All you have to do is to follow the 3 very easy steps, once you have downloaded the Tool.

Disclaimer: The tool is for experimental use only, and not for productive environments. Microsoft, Windows and other corresponding products are trademarks and owned and copyrighted by Microsoft Corporation.

Windows 10 IoT – SD Formatter – v1.0
Download To be able to use the tool you need:

  • Installed Microsoft .NET Framework (get it here)
  • Windows 10 Preview (virtual or physical machine), register and download the image here.

After the download simply extract the .zip to your local disk, and follow these steps:

  1. Insert your SD-card and select the corresponding drive letter: step_01
  2. Click “Select Folder” and select the folder, where you have downloaded and extracted the Windows 10 IoT Preview image. There should be a *.ffu file in it. The tool will inform you, if you have selected a wrong folder. step_02
  3. Finally, if you are sure you have the correct drive and previewimage-folder selected click the button “Format your SD Card” to start the formatting of your SD card and copying the Windows 10 IoT files on it. WAIT until the complete process has finished. step_03
  4. You are done! Now insert the SD card into your Raspberry Pi and let Windows finish it’s installation and setup process.

Let me know what do you think about the tool in the comments below and please inform me about any bugs you stumble upon. Thank you for your support.

Published by mariofraiss

Mario Fraiss is an entrepreneur, author, global networker, expert for digital processes, and startup mentor, Founder & CEO of FRAISS. He works in the digital and IT-industry for more than 17 years now and is an expert regarding the complete production and development chain of digital products, services & processes, and digital business models. He loves to share his experience, exchange, and discuss ideas.

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    1. Hi Victor,
      Yes i checked that, and in fact, it works as well, but I personally do not like to install the full Windows 10 ADK in Windows 8.1 to use only one tool out of it.

      Thank you, for your good wishes to the tool.


    1. Hi! Well, this tool is in an early stage but this should definitely not happen. Can you describe what happened? Which hard drives have you in your system? It would be great if you start cmd.exe as Administrator and post me the output of diskpart.exe and then list disk.

      Greetings and apologize for the missfunction!


      1. Same problem.
        I’ve copied your installer and the WIn 10 image on USB external drive, I’ve correctly choose the path of sd card and the tool formatted the USB external drive. I’ve loose about 1TB of stuff !!

        I’ve retried again with a USB key to check if was a my mistake, same issue. The problem was your installer.

        I’ve run the tool on WIn10 Preview environment.


      2. Hi,

        I am really sorry, about your data loss. As mentioned in the article, the tool is in a very early stage and should not be used in productive environments, but only experimental environments.

        Which kind of devices, have you used? The tool is intended to used in combination with a USB SD-card reader, not an internal SD-card reader and not an external USB-hard drive. Nevertheless I tested the tool with a small Hard-drive-partition and it worked really well.

        What is your output of diskpart.exe (run as administrator), and then the command “list disk”?

        Best regards,


      1. Hi Xzavier,

        Currently, using an internal reader is not supported. The problem is, that internal readers do not provide such a “drive”-type interface, which means, that it is not really recognized as a typical mapped drive. I’m working on this already… Follow my blog, to stay tuned.



    1. I am having the same problem.
      Using an external SD card reader on both Win7 and Win 8.1
      I can’t select the SD card(O), HD only.(CEFGH)


  1. Hi all! Thanks a lot for this Tuto!
    I just can’t undeestand where can we download the “Windows 10 Preview (virtual or physical machine)”. I am registered and I can’t understand what to download (I have two ISO but for x64 ans x32…).
    Thanks for your help!


    1. Hi Florian,

      I’m glad that you like the tutorial and that you find it useful.

      You have to differentiate between Windows 10 for your PC (which should be then the x64-Version) and for your Raspberry Pi, which should be the ARM-Version. You can download the versions there:
      1) OS for your PC:
      2) Register for Connect-Program: and then download the image here:

      I hope I could help you,



  2. Hi, Indeed, it help me well. Now I have the good “ffu” file.
    But now, installer launch “provisioning” and dos Windows is shut as soon as she arrived. After I have a “Congratulations…” windows but my SD card put in a USB-SDcard reader (correctly reconized) is still empty.
    Could you help me?

    Thanks a lot!



  3. On my desk top your list of list of drives only shows drives on the hard drive, C:-I: and does not show J: which is where the SD card is installed. Or when I put it into USB card reader and it shows up in File explorer as O: but your list still only goes to I:

    Also after using your formatter on my laptop and I check with File Explorer it shows empty and does not boot in the RPi2.


    1. Hi,

      Can you describe what happened? Which hard drives have you in your system? It would be great if you start cmd.exe as Administrator and post me the output of diskpart.exe and then list disk.

      Greetings and apologize for the missfunction!


      1. This is on my desktop which has a single 500GB hard drive that is partitioned. C:,T:, E:,F:,G:,H:,J:. C:& T: are Primary dual boot partitions.
        Then I have a card reader with I: USB, K: MS, L: CD, M: XD, N:USB, O: USB, Q: SD
        I also have 14 other USB ports that are in 2 7 port plugins plugged to the rear of then computer


  4. Hi, I have followed the instructions using the cmd line and it gets an error 2
    The system cannot find the file specified.
    it seems to copy all the files but it just won’t boot up, I get a box with colors on it and the screen goes blank. I used your tool and it does the exact same thing not booting up. any ideas? Like I said the sd card has a lot of files and folders just doesn’t boot.


  5. start_x.elf
    Windows folder
    efi folder


  6. Hi, i’m trying to use your tool, but have a 87 error : unnown par – apply-image… I think, it’s because i do it under Win7… Can you help me without upgrading to win8-win10?


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