none
Want to Partion, Format, and Install Windows 7 XP Pro Upgrade Using my old Legitimate Windows XP Home Edition by Entering The Product Code

    Question

  • Some time ago in one of these forums, we were told we could buy the Windows 7 upgrade and install using almost any older version of Windows by simply the product code when asked.

    Is this still valid? Can I repartition, format using my Upgrade Windows 7 Pro and then install and enter my old Windows XP Home Edition Product Code to validate?

    I would very much appreciate a reply from a Win 7 technician, if possible. Thank you.

    Marianne
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 3:09 PM

All replies

  • You don't need to enter the key.

    Assuming you are still running that version of Windows, simply start the upgrade from within XP. You will have to do a clean install, but all of your files will be put in a windows.old folder. (I would still recommend a backup anyway)

    If you don't have it installed, there are two methods for doing a clean install from an upgrade disk. The first, and Microsoft approved, method is to do a full, clean install (either of the previous OS, or of Windows 7); and once that is running, start an upgrade from within that clean install. This is the double-install method.

    The other method involves installing a full, clean copy of Windows 7, patching the registry, and restarting the license manager. This is not Microsoft approved, but is fairly simple and shown to work. There is some risk associated with this, however.
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 3:47 PM
  • Thank you, Seth. But, I don't want to have to reinstall the old XP. Just want to change my partitions, format and then install Windows 7. Hoping that at some point it will ask for my old XP product code, then ask for the new Windows 7 product code, and go ahead and install Windows 7.

    My understanding a couple of months back was that we would be able to do this.
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 4:04 PM
  • Well, there is a way to do what you want, but it's not exactly a turn-key solution. You can use a Linux system rescue CD to shrink your XP installation, and then install Windows 7 in the unused region. The installer will detect your XP install, and allow you to use your upgrade license immediately.

    Before you do this, clean your XP installation out, and defrag it. This will make the resize go much faster. I use ccleaner, which does a much more thorough job than disk cleanup. Note, if your disk has bad sectors, you may need to run chkdsk a few times to clear any file system flags. (mark the sectors bad at the filesystem level)

    Boot your system using the Linux system rescue CD, and either use gpartd (graphical) or ntfsresize (command line) to adjust the partition size. There are howto's on the web for both, but for a simple shrink, it's not terribly difficult. Once the partition is shrunk, boot it to make sure it still works.

    After that, boot your Windows 7 DVD, and when prompted, do a custom install to the unused portion of the disk. From here on out, you are back to normal Windows land. You can activate the Windows 7 install normally. You will have a bootloader prompt at startup that allows you to select either the previous OS or Windows 7.

    I did this on my laptop, and it's working fine.

    Oh, and you still don't need to enter your old XP key.

    http://gparted.sourceforge.net/livecd.php
    http://www.sysresccd.org/Main_Page
    • Edited by Seth Henry Wednesday, October 28, 2009 4:23 PM added links to external apps
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 4:12 PM
  • This is what my problem is: I had previously purchased Windows XP Home Ed., and also Windows XP Pro. I want to run Windows 7 on computer A and XP Pro on Computer B.

    What I did was: installed XP Pro on computer A. Ran the Windows 7 upgrade. Works fine. But, i had expected to be able to enter the XP Home Ed product code, but it never gave me a chance to do that. Then I installed XP Pro on computer B.

    Now, computer A runs Windows 7 upgrade, and Microsoft has disabled computer B from accessing the Internet. Because I now had XP Pro on two computers instead of one, I guess. But my intention was to use XP Home Ed on the Windows 7 computer.

    So I want to fix this because I have two legit older licenses. I want to start over and get it to work right, with minimal fuss.

    Sorry for the complications.

    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 4:29 PM
  • Ah, the problem isn't Windows 7 - it's XP. You are trying to reactivate your XP Pro license on a "new" computer, and the authentication is likely failing, right?

    Unlike what we were led to believe, neither of your XP keys were deactivated in any way, they both are still valid and can be activated (technically - legally, one of them will become invalid)

    Were these OEM or retail licenses? If they are OEM, you may be stuck reinstalling and shuffling things around. You *might* be able to get Microsoft to issue you a new key if you explain the situation, but technically, OEM licenses follow the computer. Essentially, with OEM licenses, you have to throw yourself on Microsoft's mercy if you want to transfer to a new system.

    If they are retail, you are entitled to migrate the licenses to a new system. However, you can't use Internet activation - because your key is tied to your old hardware. You will have to try telephone activation on the new system, and if that fails, you will be transferred to a Microsoft support person. You will need to explain that you want to move your XP Pro license to a new machine, and they will walk you through a manual activation. It's a bit of a pain, since it involves a 50-digit number that you have to read off, and another ~50 digit number you have to key in, but you should only have to do it once. After about 120 days, the new machine will become the new baseline, and future installs can be activated over the Internet.
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 4:40 PM
  • Here's the best account I've seen so far on the usage of a Win7 upgrade license:

    http://blogs.zdnet.com/Bott/?p=1477&tag=col1;post-1477

    The Win7 upgrade installer does not use the license key from a qualifying older OS, apparently.

    Ed Bott also wrote an editorial that mirrors my feelings about how forthcoming Microsft has been about the Upgrade license requirements:

    http://blogs.zdnet.com/Bott/?p=1493&tag=col1;post-1493


    I'm not clear on what you're trying to end up with. It looks like you're trying to install Windows 7 on Computer A, and XP Pro on Computer B.

    If that is correct, the simplest thing for you to do at this point is to activate Computer B by telephone. You probably can do it through the automated system, without speaking to a Microsoft employee. This assumes that the XP Pro license is one that can be legally transferred to a differnt PC. (OEM license are not supposed to permit that. However, I've heard of people receiveing a fresh activation code after repairing the PC. The repair consisted of replacing all of the hardware.)

    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 4:54 PM
  • Thanks. I didn't think of telephone activation, so maybe I can get this sorted out.

    Actually, yes I think Microsoft DID deactivate the XP Pro key. I had it installed, activated, validated, and upgraded just fine, then yesterday it stopped accessing the Internet and home network, suddenly.

    Not their fault, as I am sure they thought I was trying to do something illegal such as run one copy of the same software on two computers. Which I did, but not intentionally. Sheesh. I have old purchased 95, XP Home Ed., and two of XP Pro. All bought and paid for. I was just trying to do this in a way that was easy for me. Serves me right, I guess.

    Anyway, I do appreciate your help, and I think I am going to phone Microsoft and see if they can fix this situation.
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 5:22 PM
  • Thanks. I didn't think of telephone activation, so maybe I can get this sorted out.

    Actually, yes I think Microsoft DID deactivate the XP Pro key. I had it installed, activated, validated, and upgraded just fine, then yesterday it stopped accessing the Internet and home network, suddenly.

    Not their fault, as I am sure they thought I was trying to do something illegal such as run one copy of the same software on two computers. Which I did, but not intentionally. Sheesh. I have old purchased 95, XP Home Ed., and two of XP Pro. All bought and paid for. I was just trying to do this in a way that was easy for me. Serves me right, I guess.

    Anyway, I do appreciate your help, and I think I am going to phone Microsoft and see if they can fix this situation.

    That sounds very strange. I've never heard of an existing activation being undone by Microsoft.

    WGA (Windows Genuine Advantage) can be invoked later, but it's not supposed to make the machine unusable - it's just supposed to nag.

    I suggest that you try activating by telephone before calling Microsoft support. I'd bet (maybe 5 cents) that you'll be able to activate by phone without dealing with a human.
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 5:53 PM
  • Yeah, this does sound suspicious. Even with Microsoft does deactivate a key, they don't kill the machine. It just starts nagging you to activate again. You shouldn't have lost network connectivity. Also, when Microsoft does deactivate a key, you have 3 days before anything happens (other than warnings)

    I am beginning to suspect you may have another problem with this second system. Either a driver problem with the network card, or a bad configuration for the network. With a new install, viruses are unlikely; but there is a small chance it could be malware related.
    Wednesday, October 28, 2009 5:56 PM