none
Windows 8 Professional upgrade offer - can I install to a new hard drive?

    Question

  • I am planning on taking advantage of the $39.99 Windows 8 Professional upgrade offer to upgrade my existing computer from Vista.  However, I would also like to move from using my current 5400 rpm hard drive to a new SSD for my primary Windows partition.  My preferred approach would be to choose the new SSD as the destination for the install, rather than the disk that presently has Vista installed on it.  After the fresh install, I will move any stuff I want to save from the HDD to the SSD, reformat the old HDD, and then use it for general storage.

    Is this supported?  Will the upgrade installer detect the presence of Windows Vista on the existing HDD, but then let me install to the SSD?  Or does the installer only allow one to install to a disk that already has an installation of an earlier version of Windows?

    I hope this is a supported option, because the options I can think of - installing Vista from scratch on the SSD only to reformat that disk during install, or cloning the HDD to the SSD in advance of running the upgrade wizard - both seem like a lot of hassle.

    I apologize if this has been asked and answered already, but it's not clear from the announcement on the Windows Team blog if this is supported.  And most of the posts or articles I have found seem to discuss whether the upgrade can be used on a brand-new machine with a single blank disk.

    Tuesday, October 09, 2012 8:43 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    I’m afraid Windows 8 is not support to upgrade to a new drive. You must have a qualifying Windows installation on the hard drive. Or you can buy the Full version and do a clean install on your computer.

    Regards,

    Leo   Huang


    Leo Huang

    TechNet Community Support

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 9:29 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hi,

    I’m afraid Windows 8 is not support to upgrade to a new drive. You must have a qualifying Windows installation on the hard drive. Or you can buy the Full version and do a clean install on your computer.

    Regards,

    Leo   Huang


    Leo Huang

    TechNet Community Support

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 9:29 AM
    Moderator
  • Thank you, Leo.  I was afraid of that.  I know this wasn't your decision, and I can understand why Microsoft might require it work this way, but in my opinion this is a dumb stance for them to take.  I suspect many people will take advantage of falling SSD prices as part of an upgrade to Windows 8.  I mean, if I am going to reinstall everything I might as well 'refresh' my PC at the same time.  Perhaps the upgrade installer could nuke the Windows directory on the 'old' drive as part of the installation process to prevent cheating.

    Thursday, October 11, 2012 7:56 PM
  • This is exactly the situation I'm in. I have Vista on my, soon to be, old HDD but will be getting an SSD over the coming days. My Vista was an upgrade from XP. Can I clone Vista over to the new SSD and load Windows 8 on top of that? Is this my only option to get the install onto the new drive? Also I want to go from 32bit to 64bit. Any advice appreciated.
    • Edited by longreach Wednesday, October 24, 2012 11:57 PM
    Wednesday, October 24, 2012 11:54 PM
  • In your case, you'll need to purchase a conventional "full version'" of Windows 8 64-bit and perform a "clean install".  Attempting to clone an operating system from a conventional hard drive to a SSD drive doesn't always work out so well.

    Please review: Windows 7 and SSDs: Setup secrets and tune-up tweaks – by Ed Bott


    Carey Frisch

    Thursday, October 25, 2012 12:06 AM
  • Ok thanks Carey, might be my only option.
    Thursday, October 25, 2012 3:15 AM
  • This works, but is a VERY arduous process (I just did it myself) and it takes a lot of time to defrag, shrink volume, move/delete stubborn system file, repeat.

    it works, but it will take you a LONG time.

    Thursday, October 25, 2012 4:41 AM
  • About how long Kantankerous? Also what program did you use? Just wondering whether it will be worth the effort as opposed to just paying for the system builder, depends on how expensive It's going to be I suppose.

     Edit: come to think of it, if I'm going from 32bit to 64bit I will need a 'full' copy anyway won't I? Or can the 64bit upgrade version do a clean install over the old 32 once it's verified the old Windows?

    • Edited by longreach Thursday, October 25, 2012 5:42 AM
    Thursday, October 25, 2012 5:38 AM
  • I'm in a similar situation, but I've upgraded Vista to Windows 7 already.  Then I installed Windows 8 RTM evaluation in dual boot.  I figured that installing the original Vista on the new SSD will only take about 20 minutes for a clean install, according to reports I've read.  Once you've got Vista clean install, run the upgrade wizard and you should be up and running with Windows 8 shortly!

    • Edited by WebMinder Thursday, October 25, 2012 6:29 AM
    Thursday, October 25, 2012 6:28 AM
  • During the install process select "Custom" install and then select the drive /partition you wish to install W8.

    You will need to boot from installation medium to carry out this action.

    If you install from within current OS ie; W7, you will not be given this option.

    Note: the PC you are installing W8 on MUST have a current legal/ activated  previous Window OS installed. The installation process will verify you previous OS installation.


    "Computing is great experience, as long as we remember, that it is a machine the requires human input to operate correctly< Bobsan

    Thursday, October 25, 2012 9:42 AM
  • http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_cp-windows_install/how-exactly-do-you-upgrade-using-a-new-ssd-unsure/26eeb1e4-2b2d-47a2-82a2-0fe3f17ca2d1

    Read link above for more info:


    "Computing is great experience, as long as we remember, that it is a machine the requires human input to operate correctly< Bobsan

    Thursday, October 25, 2012 9:46 AM
  • Thanks for the reply Shilohbob, yes I've got a legal copy of Vista. So can I also upgrade to the 64bit version of Windows 8 from my 32bit Vista?
    Thursday, October 25, 2012 10:30 AM
  • You cannot perform a direct upgrade from a 32-bit Windows operating system to a 64-bit Windows operating system.  You would have to perform a "custom installation" which is essentially a "clean install".  Please review: 32-bit and 64-bit Windows: frequently asked questions

    Carey Frisch


    Thursday, October 25, 2012 2:34 PM