Windows 10

Now that Windows 10 20H2 is released, otherwise known as the October 2020 Update, Microsoft has made new ISO disk images for the operating system available.

If you want to perform a clean install of the operating system on a new machine or run into a problem, it is helpful to have a copy of the latest Windows 10 media. In this article we will explain how to download the Windows 10 20H2 ISO directly from Microsoft.

For those not familiar with an ISO image, they are a sector-by-sector copy of a DVD. This ISO file can then be written, or burned, to another DVD to create a replica of the original media, mounted as a drive letter in Windows, or extracted by a program like 7-Zip to access the contained files.

Below we provide a trick that causes Microsoft's site to offer a Windows 10 20H2 ISO rather than the Media Creation Tool.

How to download a Windows 10 20H2 ISO from Microsoft

When you go to Microsoft's "Download Windows 10" page, you are given the option to update via Windows Update or to download the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool.

Below, we will provide a method that causes Microsoft to offer an ISO image file for Windows 10 20H2 instead.

To download the Windows 10 20H2 ISO, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Windows 10 download page in Chrome or the new Microsoft Edge.
  2. Click on the Chrome menu, then More Tools, and then select Developer tools, as shown below.

    Chrome developer tools

  3. Now press Ctrl + Shift + M to open the Device toolbar. This toolbar lets you force Chrome to impersonate another device such as a mobile phone or a tablet.

    Click on the menu that should show Responsive and select iPad or iPad Pro so that you have a larger screen to work with.

    Chrome emulation

  4. When you select one of these devices, you should see the screen resize to reflect the size of the device's screen. At this point, I suggest you change the zoom to 100%, as shown below.

    Change zoom level

  5. Now refresh the page in the browser by pressing the F5 key. Once the page refreshes, Microsoft's site will now offer you the Windows 10 ISO instead of the Media Creation Tool.

    Now click on the drop-down arrow under 'Select edition' and select the 'Windows 10' option under "Windows 10 October 2020 Update". Once selected, click on the Confirm button.

    Select Windows 10 October 2020 Update

  6. After a few seconds, Microsoft's site will now ask you to select the language for your ISO.

    Select Language

    Select your language and press the Confirm button again.
  7. Finally, you will be asked to either download the 32-bit or 64-bit ISO. When ready, click on one of these choices, and the respective Windows 20H2 ISO image will be downloaded.

    Select type

It should be noted that the above instructions work in any Chromium-based browser, not only Chrome or the new Edge.

How to use the Windows 10 ISO

Now that you have downloaded the ISO, you can use it to upgrade your existing Windows 10 operating system, perform a clean install of Windows 10 20H2 to a new PC, or use it to access the recovery environment for troubleshooting.

For a clean install, you must have a Windows 10 product key available.

Before using the ISO, you will want to make sure you have a spare USB drive that you can use to create bootable Windows 10 USB media.

If you do not have a spare USB drive, you can purchase a 32GB Sandisk drive for about $8.99 or a 5-pack of 64GB USB drives for $30 on Amazon.

You can then create a bootable USB drive from the ISO and use it to install the operating system.

For example, if you can no longer boot your computer due to a virus or wish to enter the Windows 10 Recovery Environment to remove a stubborn infection, you can boot your computer using the Windows 10 installation media to repair the computer.

Windows Repair

It is suggested that all users create new media from the Windows 10 ISOs as new feature updates are released.

Related Articles:

How to download a Windows 10 21H2 ISO from Microsoft

New Windows KB5009543, KB5009566 updates break L2TP VPN connections

Microsoft Defender weakness lets hackers bypass malware detection

Microsoft Azure App Service flaw exposed customer source code

Windows 10 21H2 adds ransomware protection to security baseline