How To: Run Bisq on a USB Flash Drive

Always attempting to protect my privacy, I prefer to run portable versions of sensitive windows client software using a USB flash drive over installing software directly on a computer. Using portable software on a flash drive has two advantages:

  1. You can take your software and associated data anywhere and run it on any computer simply by connecting your flash drive into a USB port.
  2. Truly portable software does not leave any data traces behind on your host computer – such as your computer’s registry.

Head over to and you will find anything you need to get you started and a wealth of portable client software, which can be installed on a USB flash drive.

Sadly, I couldn’t find a portable version of the Bisq desktop client software so I spent some time to find out if there is any workaround to get Bisq installed on a USB flash drive.

Install Bisq on a USB Flash Drive

Here are the few simple steps you can follow to run Bisq for Windows on a USB flash drive:

Insert your USB flash drive into your computer’s USB port.

  1. Insert your USB flash drive into your computer’s USB port. I recommend that you use a dedicated, freshly formatted USB flash drive for your portable apps instead of sharing it with other storage.
  2. Go to Bisq’s website and download the latest version of the Bisq desktop client software.
  3. Start by installing the software directly on your flash drive. When prompted, change the proposed installation path to F:\Bisq. Replace “F” with your USB medium’s drive.
  4. If you have an existing installation of Bisq on your computer and you want to migrate your data to your flash drive, copy application data folder C:\Users\<User Name>\AppData\Roaming\Bisq\btc_mainnet to your application directory F:\Bisq.
  5. Navigate to F:\Bisq and create a shortcut for program Bisq.exe. To create a shortcut, right-click on Bisq.exe and select Create shortcut from the menu. The shortcut is created inside folder F:\Bisq.
  6. Right-click on shortcut F:\Bisq\Bisq.exe – Shortcut and select Properties from the menu to edit the shortcut. Change field Target to F:\Bisq\Bisq.exe –appDataDir “\Bisq”.
    Change field Start in to F:\Bisq.
  7. For your convenience when starting Bisq, move the shortcut from your Bisq directory to the root of your flash drive, from F:\Bisq to F:\.
  8. Start the Bisq client software by double-clicking on your new shortcut F:\Bisq.exe – Shortcut.
  9. If you migrated your data from your computer, verify that your application data is complete, more specifically, the following:
    • Your portfolio, if you have pending trades
    • Your funds
    • Your national currency accounts
    • Your wallet password
    • Your wallet seed
  10. After you have successfully verified your portable installation, make a backup using Account > Backup.

I hope this instruction is useful.

Stay safe, stay private!
The BKK Sledgehammer Messiah

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