How to Extract Files from Windows Installation Media

If you discovered that one or several system files are corrupted or deleted, there is a way to restore them from Windows installation CD, DVD or ISO image.

Instructions for Windows 10, 8, 7 and Vista

1. Download and install the latest version of 7-zip. You may need to download one of the betas, because the latest stable release of 7-zip might be too ancient to open WIM files from the newest versions of Windows.

2. Open the root of the installation media.

3. Open the Sources folder and find the file named install.wim.

4. Right-click the install.wim file, then point to 7-zip, and then click Open archive.

5 (optional). If you see one or more directories named from 1 to 6, then open the folder that has the highest number in its name.

6. Open the folder that contains the file you want to restore, right-click the necessary file and click Copy to.

7. When the Copy window appears select the folder on your hard drive where the file should be placed and click OK.


To replace system files you may need to sign in to Windows as an administrator.

If a system file is in use by the operating system, it cannot be replaced. In such cases I recommend you to log on to another copy of Windows installed on the PC and perform the necessary actions from it. If you don't want to install an additional copy of Windows, you can boot up the computer from Windows 10/8/7/Vista installation media and do the job from there.