How to put in Windows 11 and 10 on the Steam Deck

Home windows 11 and Windows 10 operate on the Steam Deck now that Valve has officially produced drivers for Microsoft’s operating method. It truly is not as simple as hitting a down load button, although. In this guideline, we are heading to clearly show you how to set up Windows on the Steam Deck, both to the inner solide-point out generate (SSD) and from a microSD card.

Home windows isn’t excellent on the Steam Deck, but setting up the OS (or booting from it with a microSD card) can assist flip the Steam Deck into a laptop computer substitute. We are likely to present you to do a whole set up to the SSD, as well as how to boot to Windows from a microSD card. The latter will retain the authentic SteamOS install intact.

Just before diving in, retain in head that Windows 11 just isn’t technically supported on the Steam Deck. Home windows 11 needs TPM, and the Steam Deck isn’t going to have that enabled. You can nonetheless install Home windows 11 with the directions beneath, but you may well not obtain Windows updates.

Jacob Roach / Electronic Developments

Boot from a microSD card or USB drive

Before basically setting up Windows on the Steam Deck, I endorse you boot from a microSD card or USB travel to start with. This is fully reversible, so you can attempt out Windows without having erasing just about anything on your Steam Deck. Windows is just not fantastic on the Steam Deck, and reinstalling SteamOS is a massive endeavor on its very own.

I’m making use of a microSD card, but any UHS-1 microSD card (examine the label) or USB 3. drive with at the very least 32GB of storage will operate. The Steam Deck supports Windows 10 and Windows 11, and the approach is the exact irrespective of which OS you use. I’m making use of Windows 10 below.

Action 1: Head to Microsoft’s website and down load the Home windows 10 media generation software. If you want to use Windows 11, down load the Windows 11 generation tool (underneath Create Windows 11 set up media).

Move 2: Down load Rufus, which is what will allow for you to develop a bootable version of Home windows on your microSD card or USB push.

Phase 3: Obtain the Windows motorists for Steam Deck from Valve. Place them all in a folder jointly on a spare USB push for accessibility afterwards.

Steam Deck drivers in a folder in Windows.

Stage 4: Open the Windows Media Development Software and find Build installation media. On the next webpage, select ISO file, and pick a position to retail outlet it on your Personal computer. Wait until the approach is carried out, and make guaranteed to keep a take note about in which you saved the ISO.

Phase 5: Plug in your microSD card or USB push and open Rufus. Be aware: Continuing in this article will erase all info on your microSD card/USB drive. In Rufus, decide on your microSD card or USB push beneath Machine. Then, decide on Pick out up coming to the Boot choice portion. Navigate to your Windows ISO that you created previously.

Under Impression choice, find Windows To Go. Then, pick MBR underneath Partition plan. Rename the travel if you want, and pick Ready to commence the flashing system.

Rufus creating a bootable Windows installer.

Action 6: The moment it really is carried out, eject the microSD card and insert it in the Steam Deck. Convert off your Steam Deck totally, and then maintain down the Volume down button as your power it on. This will enter the boot manager.

SD card hanging out of the Steam Deck.

Jacob Roach / Digital Tendencies

Action 7: Select your SD card to boot into Home windows. It will boot in portrait mode on the Steam Deck.

Windows would not truly install listed here, so continue via the set up process as usual by selecting your language, keyboard layout, and many others. A keyboard and mouse help a ton here, but you can get as a result of set up with just the touchscreen.

Stage 8: At the time you are in Home windows, head to Configurations > System > Display and locate the Screen orientation possibility. Choose Landscape to flip the monitor to the correct orientation.

Screen orientation setting on the Steam Deck.

Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

Move 9: At last, plug in your USB generate that you stored the Windows drivers on. Plug it in making use of your USB-C hub (not specifically into the Steam Deck) and put in the drivers.

Which is it. When you reboot your Steam Deck, it will go again to SteamOS, but you can constantly boot into Home windows presented you go by the boot supervisor.

You should not blend up this procedure with twin booting. The Steam Deck won’t aid dual booting at the minute, so you may require to opt for both Windows or SteamOS if you want a lasting alternative.

A USB-C hub connected to the Steam Deck.

Jacob Roach / Digital Developments

How to set up Windows on the Steam Deck’s SSD

If you want Windows only on the Steam Deck, you can install specifically to the SSD. You can expect to need to erase all of the data on the SSD to do so, while, which include your video games, settings, and SteamOS by itself.

It can be feasible to restore SteamOS on the Steam Deck, but it really is a little bit of a hassle. If you just want to experiment with Windows, use the method over. If you might be ready to dive into the comprehensive encounter and will not brain deleting your knowledge, proceed on.

Move 1: To start, you require to develop a Home windows set up generate. We define how to do that in our guideline on how to put in Windows 11, but the system is easy.

Down load the Home windows media generation instrument and produce an installer on your USB generate. You can expect to require a USB drive with at least 16GB of storage, but the device will wander you by way of the techniques in any other case.

Action 2: Power down your Steam Deck wholly and join your USB drive with a USB hub. While you can connect the travel straight, I strongly endorse connecting it with a USB-C hub to stay clear of any problems. A keyboard and mouse are fantastic for installation, also, and a USB-C hub will allow you to connect those people peripherals.

Move 3: Electric power on the Steam Deck though holding the Quantity down button to enter the boot supervisor. Choose your USB travel with the Home windows installer to go on.

Steam Deck's boot manager.

Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

Move 4: Like right before, Windows will boot in portrait method. Choose the Home windows edition you want and then pick Set up now. I hugely propose connecting a keyboard and mouse here. You can get by way of installation with the touchscreen, but the Steam Deck’s keyboard and the touchpads will never function.

You’ll be requested to activate Windows right after. Enter your solution critical if you have it, or decide on I will not have a product or service important to continue on.

Action 5: On the subsequent display, select Custom: install Windows only. You are going to want to delete partitions on the Steam Deck in purchase to install Windows.

Essential: This will delete all of the data on your Steam Deck, including your video games, options, and any will save/media that haven’t been uploaded to Steam Cloud. It can be probable to restore SteamOS afterwards, but you will need to have to reinstall all of your video games and reconfigure your options.

Action 6: Pick out a partition you want to delete and find Delete. I propose deciding upon the major of how at any time lots of partitions you have. The 512GB product, at the very least, comes with 8 partitions.

Step 7: Choose the partition you deleted, which should really demonstrate up as Unallocated area, and decide on Subsequent. Home windows will get started setting up on the push.

Phase 8: Just after a bit of time and an computerized reboot, you can expect to load into the ordinary Windows set up. Progress as you would earlier mentioned, deciding upon your keyboard structure, and language, and skipping the Wi-Fi part.

Windows setup on the Steam Deck.

Jacob Roach / Electronic Trends

Phase 9: Windows is set up at this stage, so all you have to have is a bit of cleanup. Head to Configurations > Process > Display screen and change Display screen Orientation to Landscape.

Seize a further USB travel with the Home windows motorists for Steam Deck, and install them as well. SteamOS is absent now, so you can expect to need to have to restore it if you want to go again.

SteamOS recovery instructions

How to get better SteamOS on the Steam Deck

If you installed Windows on the Steam Deck’s SSD and you want to go again, you can. Valve provides a Steam Deck recovery impression that will get SteamOS again in doing the job buy — delivered you might be Alright with manufacturing facility resetting your Steam Deck at the time again.

Stage 1: To start, download the SteamOS recovery impression from Valve.

Action 2: Obtain Rufus on a different Home windows Personal computer and insert a USB travel. Create the SteamOS restoration picture to the USB generate and eject it from your Computer.

Stage 3: Electric power down the Steam Deck totally and hook up the USB drive using a USB-C hub. Maintain the Quantity down button when powering on the Steam Deck to enter the boot supervisor. Pick out your USB drive from there (it ought to be “EFI USB Unit”).

Action 4: After some time, you will boot into the restoration environment. There are a couple of possibilities in this article that will endeavor to protect your information, but I endorse using the Re-graphic Steam Deck choice.

If you are coming from Home windows, you will need to manufacturing facility reset the Steam Deck to get it functioning. Trying the other solutions would not hold your online games if you’ve got already mounted Windows, and they could lead to some nasty file method conflicts.

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