vaheeD khoshnouD

linux, mikrotik, macosx

How to burn a .iso to a USB device with dd

Written by vaheeD on February 5, 2014
5.00 avg. rating (93% score) - 1 vote

BIOS and UEFI Bootable USB

Using dd

Note: This method is recommended due to its simplicity.
Warning: This will irrevocably destroy all data on /dev/sdx.

In GNU/Linux

Tip: Check that the USB flash installation media is not mounted with lsblk.


Note: Use /dev/sdx instead of /dev/sdx1, and adjust x to reflect the targeted device.


# dd bs=4M if=/path/to/archlinux.iso of=/dev/sdx && sync

In Mac OS X

To be able to use dd on your USB device on a Mac you have to do some special maneuvers. First of all insert your usb device, OS X will automount it, and in run:

$ diskutil list

Figure out what your USB device is called with mount or sudo dmesg | tail (e.g. /dev/disk1) and unmount the partitions on the device (i.e., /dev/disk1s1) while keeping the device proper (i.e., /dev/disk1):

$ diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk1

Now we can continue in accordance with the instructions above (but use bs=8192 if you are using the OS X dd, the number comes from 1024*8).

dd if=image.iso of=/dev/disk1 bs=8192
20480+0 records in
20480+0 records out
167772160 bytes transferred in 220.016918 secs (762542 bytes/sec)

It is probably a good idea to eject your drive before physical removal at this point:

$ diskutil eject /dev/disk1

5.00 avg. rating (93% score) - 1 vote