Buyer Beware on Microsoft Windows 7 Upgrade

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Matt Barton's picture

I'm issuing a "buyer beware" on the various Microsoft Windows 7 Upgrades that were announced recently. I just got burned trying to upgrade my Windows Vista Home Premium (64 bit) to Windows 7 Professional. For no apparent reason, the installer refuses to upgrade-in-place and only offers me the option to do a clean install (a hard drive wipe), which is totally unacceptable to me at this point. So, if you are one of the unfortunate people who bought Windows Vista Home Premium, you're going to be screwed when it's time to upgrade--assuming you're not interested in a clean install. What burns me up about this is that the upgrade option exists only for certain versions, and Microsoft made sure to confuse the #$@# out of us with so many different ones (pointless complexity, really).

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Bill Loguidice
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I think the rule is that you

I think the rule is that you if you want to go from a 32-bit Windows operating system to a 64-bit Windows operating system, you must do a clean install, and vice-versa. Are you sure that you're going from 64-bit to 64-bit? You should have gotten two discs in your box, one a 64-bit version and one a 32-bit version, though of course you must use one or the other (they share the serial number).

I know there are further restrictions on upgrading from XP to Windows 7, but I thought that in most cases you could go from most versions of Vista to most versions of Windows 7 as long as you matched the -bit. I had no issues with three in-place upgrades (not clean installs, though that would have been preferred) and I know the only thing in common was going to the same -bit (they were different versions of Vista).

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Chris Kennedy
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"The chart"

http://mossblog.allthingsd.com/files/2009/08/windows-upgrade-chart.png

Blahhhhh.

So I suppose you could have purchased the Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade, run the 64 bit upgrade install...and then done the "anytime upgrade' or whatever it is called, paid Microsoft the extra $$$ and then upgraded Home Premium to professional.

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Bill Loguidice
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Good chart, but that's

Good chart, but that's pretty brutal...

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Catatonic
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Joined: 05/20/2006
Did you notice there is a

Did you notice there is a European edition that CAN'T do an upgrade from ANYTHING?

Matt Barton
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Joined: 01/16/2006
Everything I have is 64-bit.

Everything I have is 64-bit. My version of Vista is the one that came with my HP Pavilion, so I'm sure there will be many, many people in my boat.

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Andy O. (not verified)
Yes...

Upgrade only works version to version.

Vista Home Basic -> Win 7 Starter Ed.
Vista Home Premium -> Win 7 Home Premium
Vista Business -> Win 7 Prof.
Vista Ultimate -> Win 7 Ultimate

If you want to go from Vista Home Premium to Win 7 Pro, you have to do a full install, or you can upgrade to 7 Home Premium then use the Anytime upgrade to upgrade 7 HP to 7 Professional.

I think this is all documented at Microsoft.com/Windows7

If you do a Custom (full install) and choose the drive with your existing Vista, your User/Windows/Program Files/etc folder are moved into C:\Windows.old, then Windows is installed clean, then you can just find all your old files and move them into your new installation.

This method is actually quite fast compared to running the MS update, but you'll have to install some apps probably.

Chris Kennedy
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Matching

There will be some people in your boat, but the rule of thumb is that you need the same amount of "bitage" as well as same moniker.

As a side note, I would still recommend doing a fresh install whenever you upgrade an OS. Vista to 7 might be the best upgrade in Windows history (as far as simplicity, speed, organization, etc), but still requires that the bits match, etc...

Can you take my suggested upgrade path, Matt? I guess exchanging your copy of windows would be the tough part, but you could get the Home Premium version, upgrade to 64 bit Home Premium of Windows 7 & then pull this to get up to Professional -

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/products/features/windows-an...

I don't know how much the fees offset (retail box vs adding an anytime upgrade fee), but at least it is a solution.

Otherwise, I once again recommend doing a clean install.

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Matt Barton
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As I said already, there's

As I said already, there's no 32 to 64 bit problem here. I'm trying to upgrade from 64 bit Vista to 64 bit Windows 7.

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Chris Kennedy
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Joined: 08/31/2008
Named versions

Hey Matt -

Andy O. said what I said. I probably didn't highlight your problem enough.

Your problem isn't upgrading 64 bit to 64 bit. It is upgrading Home Premium to Professional. If you want to do an in-place upgrade, you need to go to Home Premium first.

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Mark Vergeer
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hmppf

I will probably only upgrade my gaming rig. The 2.8 Core2Duo and Nvidia 9800GTS+, 4Gb RAM deserve Windows 7 don't you think?
But it will be a fresh install. Which version of Windows 7 would suit my needs best. I am using the machine for emulation and games - also recent games.....

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Armchair arcade Editor | Pixellator | www.markvergeer.nl

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