Windows 10 Installed in possible record 104 seconds – witness the fast and furious speedrun with Tiny10

Is it possible to install Windows 10 in just 100 seconds? That is the question Windows developer and tinkerer NTDev asked himself recently. The answer is provided in the YouTube video embedded below, kind of. We need that qualifier as what you see installed from start to finish, in the short clip, is a specially optimized version of NTDev’s own already cut-down and compacted tiny10 build. Also, the process seems to have taken a smidgeon longer than 100 seconds – more like 104 seconds according to the clock in the video.

With the number of times NTDev must have (re)installed Windows over recent months and years, his patience with Windows Setup must have worn extremely thin. Given this quirky developer’s recent history (example 1, 2, and 3), it therefore isn’t surprising that he has decided to put some effort into optimizing Microsoft’s most popular Windows version in ways that facilitate a super-fast install.

The above Windows 10 speedrun video shows that Microsoft’s recent OS can be up and running from a blank disk to the Windows desktop in around 100 seconds. That’s a great improvement on the 20 to 30 minutes (1,200 to 1,800 seconds) we might expect for a standard Windows 10 install to complete on a modern PC. However, NTDev hasn’t just leveraged the “fastest storage available, [and] RAM” to achieve his feat. Tiny10 was the installer base, and this already lightweight Windows version is said to have been subject to “quite a bit of further optimization.”

The idea of a speedrun of Windows 10 (and 11) installs seems interesting, but it would probably be more interesting to a wider audience if a fully-featured Windows 10 or 11 install became a standard installer image. There probably should be other rules about the use of hardware rather than virtualization, RAM disks, and so on, too. With a level playing field, we could perhaps have useful benchmark tables on a dedicated page, forum, or somewhere like Reddit or HWBot to shine a light on hardware combinations that excel in this respect.

For the fastest standard Windows OS install users should, as NTDev suggests, aim to equip the fastest SSDs they can get their hands on, as well as using super-fast RAM kits. Equipping one of the best CPUs is probably also a good idea, and users can also probably shave a few seconds off competitive install-from-cold times with a choice motherboard and tweaked BIOS settings.