ISO image files are simply a different word for ISO files. The term “image” is frequently misinterpreted to suggest that this file is a “snapshot” of a certain file or operating system that may be used to recover a computer or file.
The introduction of optical drives gave rise to ISO files (CD and DVD writers). CD and DVD drives are nearing the end of their useful lives, as many users now prefer to transfer data via USBs and/or external drives, yet the ISO file format lives on.
Although certain ISO files may contain operating systems, this is not the case for all of them. Others may contain software or file system copies/archives/snapshots.
How to ‘Open’ an ISO image or file
There are several ways to open an ISO image files. The approach you use is determined on the file’s intended purpose.
Mount ISO image
A virtual optical drive can be created using an ISO image. In the same way that a USB drive or an external drive may be mounted in Windows 10, an ISO file can be mounted so that the system believes there is an optical drive attached to it with data on it.
- Open File Explorer.
- Navigate to the ISO file you want to mount.
- Select the file and right-click it.
- Select the Mount option from the context menu.
- Once mounted, go to This PC and the file will show as an optical drive.
- Double-click the virtual optical drive and browse the files in it.
Burn ISO image
You must burn ISO images that are operating systems that are intended to be installed on a PC on a USB drive. This is due to the fact that the file must be ‘read’ by a PC that does not have a desktop operating system installed or from outside the desktop operating system.
Before you burn an ISO picture, you should be aware of the following:
- What operating system is installed on it?
- How big must the USB be in order for the ISO image to be burned and run?
- The USB’s format should be.
- When burning the ISO image, this is the partition scheme that should be used (GPT or MBR).
To burn an ISO image, you’ll need to use a third-party program. There are a few options, but Rufus is the one we recommend for Windows 10. We also suggest utilizing a USB with no other data on it. It will be formatted, and all of the information on it will be erased.
- Download and run Rufus.
- Connect the USB you want to burn the ISO image to your computer.
- In Rufus, select the image, the partition style, and the file system to use for the USB when burning the ISO image.
- Click Start.
It can take a long time to burn an ISO image. Allow Rufus to do his work without interfering.
Extract ISO image
An ISO image or ISO file is a type of archive file that can be extracted. You can extract a Windows 10 ISO file and run the Setup.exe file contained within it.
- Install an archive extraction tool like 7-Zip on your system.
- Open File Explorer and navigate to the ISO file.
- Right-click the ISO file and select the unarchive or extract option.
Use apps to read ISO image
Other programs can read some ISO image files as well. Only a few ISO images must be utilized in this manner, and many ISO images can also be burned to a USB device.
Related: How to Access MsConfig in Windows 10
What is an ISO file? CONCLUSION
ISO files are archive files that can be found on Windows 10, Mac OS X, and Linux systems. Depending on the OS, you’ll probably use different tools to access the file. All three operating systems can mount and burn ISO files.