10 Best Rufus Alternatives For Windows, Linux, And MacOS

Chances are that if you’ve come here looking for the best Rufus alternatives, you need similar tools for platforms other than Windows, like Linux and macOS. Howsoever fast and reliable Rufus may be, it’s quite unfortunate that it’s only available on Windows. The free and open source application has been a go-to choice for those wanting to create USB flash drives or Live USBs. It supports bootable ISO image files, as well as raw disk image files. It comes particularly handy when your operating system suddenly crashes and you need to reinstall it using the USB slot. As we said, the limitation of Rufus is that it’s only available on Windows, so here we’ve gathered a list of the Rufus app alternatives that can be accessed on Linux and macOS, apart from Windows.

Best Rufus alternatives in 2021:

1 – UNetbootin 6 – WoeUSB
2 – YUMI 7 – Easy2Boot
3 – Diskmaker X 8 – TransMac
4 – balenaEtcher 9 – PowerISO
5 – Ventoy 10 – Win32 Disk Imager

If you’re looking alternatives for Rufus, you will find them aplenty and this makes it hard to narrow down on just one. This is why we’re giving you pros and cons lists for all the options we’ve selected. Interestingly, we’ve also included a few options that let you create bootable USB drives for macOS using a Windows machine and vice versa. This versatility can come in really handy during crunch situations when you’re forced to work with the exact software you have at your disposal. So do keep an eye out for such programs. That said, here’s your complete guide to software like Rufus for Windows, Linux, and macOS.

Best Rufus Alternatives

1 – UNetbootin

Don’t be dissuaded by this application’s dated interface. UNetbootin is a feature-rich alternative to Rufus that does its job with speed and finesse. The best part about UNetbootin is that it doesn’t format your USB drive or external hard drive, so you can retain whatever data you have on them. UNetbootin is mainly used by those wishing to create a bootable USB drive for Linux distributions. Its menu itself lets you choose from popular distributions like Ubuntu, Fedora, openSUSE, CentOS, Gentoo, and more. It can even load a variety of system utilities, such as Ophcrack, BackTrack. You can download UNetbootin right now for Windows, Linux, and macOS.

UNetbootin
Pros:

• Robust Linux distro support
• Speedy flashing speed, just like Rufus
• Cross-platform

Cons:

• Uninstaller not supported
• Platform Availability: Windows, macOS, and Linux
• Install: Website (Free)

2 – YUMI

YUMI stands for ‘Your Universal Multiboot Installer’ and can be used for quickly creating a multiboot USB drive containing multiple bootable ISO files. You can use this media creation tool for booting Live Linux operating systems, Linux and Windows installers, antivirus utilities, disc cloning, getting backups, penetration testing, using diagnostic tools, and much more. And its multiboot nature means this Rufus alternative can be employed to create an all-in-one, multi-use diagnostic USB repair kit. YUMI stores all its files inside a separate ‘Multiboot’ folder that allows you to utilize the rest of the drive for storing other things. YUMI is available only on Windows and there are no versions planned for other operating systems.

YUMI
Pros:

• Multiboot USB creator
• Support for storing other files

Cons:

• Windows only
• Platform Availability: Windows
• Install: Website (Free)

3 – Diskmaker X

This is the finest alternative to Rufus for Mac users. Diskmaker X is meant to be used for making macOS bootable USB drives using macOS machines. Once you install and get it running, it tries to find the install file on its own using Spotlight. Diskmaker X then gives you the option of creating a bootable USB drive to complete the process. The process is so simple that you can do it with a few clicks. Unfortunately, though, this alternative to Rufus is not compatible with Big Sur, the latest macOS version that was released by Apple last year. The makers of this Rufus for Mac software have mentioned that there’s no possibility of it being compatible with the said version as well. Let’s hope the same won’t be the case with future versions of the operating system.

Diskmaker X
Pros:

• Best Rufus alternative for Mac
• Simple process

Cons:

• Not compatible with macOS Big Sur
• Platform Availability: macOS
• Install: Website (Free)

4 – balenaEtcher

Previously known as Etcher, this is a free and open source Rufus alternative that can be used for writing image files such as ISO and IMG, as well as zipped folders onto storage media to create live SD cards and USB flash drives. It’s truly cross-platform in nature, being available on Windows, Linux, and macOS. Etcher prides itself on its polished user interface and its Validated Burning feature, which thoroughly checks for corrupted cards or drives before working with them. Etcher also happens to be very hard drive-friendly, as it makes drive selection obvious to avoid wiping your entire hard drive. Etcher really is one of the best alternative to Rufus you can download right now for Windows, Linux, and Mac.

balenaEtcher
Pros:

• Beautiful user interface
• Validated Burning
• Fast flashing speed

Cons:

• Relatively large in size
• Platform Availability: Windows, Linux, and macOS
• Install: Website (Free)

5 – Ventoy

Ventoy is a magnificent Rufus alternative that not only supports multiboot but also lets you create bootable USB drives by just copy-pasting ISO files. This USB formatting tool even supports WIM, IMG, VHD(x), and EFI files. And it’s incredibly fast at doing its job, which is an added bonus. Ventoy supports both MBR and GPT partition styles on Windows and Linux and provides a native boot menu style for legacy and UEFI specifications. This universal USB installer is available for Windows and Linux platforms and is constantly updated with new features that allow it to compete well with the other looking alternatives for Rufus available out there.

Ventoy
Pros:

• Multiboot functionality
• Copy-paste support
• Feature-rich

Cons:

• No macOS version
• Platform Availability: Windows, Linux
• Install: Website (Free)

6 – WoeUSB

We said earlier that this list also has cross-platform options that allow you to create bootable USB drives for one platform on another platform. WoeUSB is one such Rufus alternative. It is actually a fork of WinUSB, the generic USB driver provided by Microsoft for its operating systems, starting with Windows Vista. It can support legacy, MBR-style, and IBM PC-compatible boot modes. Plus, native UEFI booting is also supported for Windows 7 and later images. WoeUSB can be accessed as a command-line utility or through a version with a UI of its own. You can download this Rufus alternative now for Linux and start creating rescue drives for various versions of Windows.

WoeUSB
Pros:

• Linux program for creating Windows bootable USB drives

Cons:

• Only available for Linux
• Platform Availability: Linux
• Install: Website (Free)

7 – Easy2Boot

Easy2Boot is a simple and handy bootable media creation tool available for Windows and Linux operating systems. It’s unfortunate that a macOS version doesn’t exist but there are very few options available for the said operating system anyway. It’s one of the very few alternatives to Rufus for Windows and Linux since it lets you create a USB drive on either platform from the other platform. Boasting more than 2000 downloads a day, this USB installer is used by professionals, schools, and colleges all over the world. Easy2Boot even lets you boot from partition images made from ISO files, image files, or bootable USB drives for more complex ISO files. It is a great alternative to Rufus if you’re looking for a program for your Windows or Linux machine.

Easy2Boot
Pros:

• Simple and easy to use
• Fast flashing speed

Cons:

• Not available for macOS
• Platform Availability: Linux
• Install: Website (Free)

8 – TransMac

TransMac is a unique kind of Rufus alternative that lets you create a bootable USB drive for macOS using a Windows PC. However, unlike most other open source programs in this list, this one is not available for free. And it comes at a very high cost as well. It can command that cost due to the fact that there are so few utilities that allow you to do what it does. And it also possesses way more features instead of just being a simple media creation tool. These include Apple File System (APFS) volume read support, and the ability to open APFS, HFS, and HFS+ format disk drives and USB flash drive sticks. If you wish to save and restore an image of a disk or a flash drive, you can use TransMac to do so as well. Plus, there’s the added ability to create, compress, expand and split DMG files.

TransMac
Pros:

• Windows tool for creating Mac USB bootable drive
• Performs various other functions
• Simple UI

Cons:

• Expensive
• Platform Availability: Windows
• Install: Website ($59)

9 – PowerISO

This ninth utility in our list of best Rufus alternatives is primarily a powerful CD and DVD burning tool, but it does serve various other functions, one among which includes creating USB installer drives. The part of PowerISO that lets you create a bootable USB stick like Rufus is quite fast and does not overwhelm you with many advanced options. PowerISO is one of the many Rufus substitutes available for the Windows platform. It can even be used for mounting ISO files with internal virtual drives. PowerISO allows you to mount all popular disc image files to built-in virtual drives. Plus, you can also use PowerISO for burning ISO files to CDs, DVDs, or Blu-Ray discs. Being a professional tool, PowerISO comes at a price and is only available for Windows PC.

PowerISO
Pros:

• Best tool for flashing Mac, Windows and Linux drives
• Robust disc burning software
• Rich UI

Cons:

• Not free
• Platform Availability: Windows
• Install: Website ($30)

10 – Win32 Disk Imager

Available for Windows and Linux, this utility is meant for you if you want a universal USB installer for flashing low-level utilities like Raspberry Pie or any ARM-based OS onto an SD card or a USB stick. If yes, then Win32 Disk Imager is one of the best Rufus alternatives for you. It renders excellent performance on both its Windows and Linux versions. All you need to do is direct the tool towards the system image and select the device to flash on to. With its straightforward Windows and Linux UI, Win32 Disk Imager is pretty simple to use as well. It’s not available for Mac, unfortunately.

Win32 Disk Imager
Pros:

• Best media creation tool for flashing low-level utilities
• Fast flashing speed

Cons:

• Not available for macOS
• Platform Availability: Windows, Linux
• Install: Website ($30)

Alternatives To Rufus FAQs

Q. What can I use instead of Rufus?

Rufus is a free and open source universal USB installer for Windows machines that lets you format and create bootable USB drives or Live USBs. But unfortunately, it’s not available for the Linux operating system or even Mac. You can hence go through the list above, which is populated with various alternatives to Rufus that you can use on all three platforms – Windows, Linux, and macOS.

Q. Is Etcher better than Rufus?

Now known as balenaEtcher, Etcher is not just a Rufus alternative for Windows, but it’s also available on the Linux operating system and macOS. This USB installer and media creation tool grabs an attractive UI. Etcher is brilliant at what it does and it gains an advantage over Rufus by being a cross-platform alternative to Rufus. So if you’re on Linux or Mac, just Etcher it without thinking twice.

Q. Is Rufus necessary?

Rufus is not necessary but it’s a pretty important utility to have on your Windows machines. In case your Windows operating system crashes or gets corrupt, you can use Rufus or any other universal USB installer for creating a rescue USB drive that will not only save your data but also let you install the OS a new.

Q. Which is the best bootable USB creator?

Rufus is an excellent option if you’re looking for a great universal USB installer for Windows. But due to its unavailability on Linux and macOS, a lot of alternatives to Rufus have sprung up and are flourishing. You can check out any of the Rufus alternatives we’ve listed above to know their pros and cons.