Upgrade on a blank HDD?

I recently built a new PC and I want to use the Digital River student upgrade to install a legal version of Windows 7. (Currently running the RC)

I have an old XP cd/licence key that I'm no longer using which I want to use to validate the upgrade. However, I can't even install the old XP OS on the new p55 mobo.

Is there any way I can "upgrade"?


Google hasn't been much help in finding out how the upgrade process itself actually works. :(
6 answers Last reply
More about upgrade blank
  1. (By 'blank' I mean a HDD without a legitimate copy of Windows installed.)
  2. I found out that as long as the hard drive has a version of Windows XP on it, you can use the bootable DVD's "Format hard drive" first option, to do a clean install of the upgrade.

    IF HOWEVER you formatted the drive first, it will detect that there is no version of Windows on there and will not let you enter the product key. It will tell you that you have an upgrade version and that the product key is invalid, and you cannot activate the update !!!!

    If you have formatted your hard drive already and want to use the Upgrade DVD to do a clean install you can do the following:

    1) Don't call Microsoft. They're idiots and don't know you can get around this. The stupid woman told me I had to purchase a full license because I had removed XP. Moron.

    2) Boot from the upgrade disk. Do not enter a product key when it asks you. It will still install the product, but you won't be able to activate it.

    3) Once the installation is finished, boot off of the disk again, and this time do the installation again, but format the hard drive first. Because it detects a version of windows on the drive already, it will format the hard drive and retain the knowledge that it noticed a valid version of windows on there already. It will then let you enter the product key AND activate the installation.
  3. Is your digital river a a digtal download? if so, you need to burn it in disc as documented here:

    http://forum.imgburn.com/index.php?showtopic=11194

    put it in your drive and boot up with it, then install win 7. I don't think you even need your xp keys.

    your keys from digital river should just work (mine did). if not, you could try the double install trick as documented here:

    http://www.winsupersite.com/win7/clean_install_upgrade_media.asp
  4. Thanks for your help guys.

    I found another useful tutorial: http://www.winsupersite.com/win7/clean_install_upgrade_media.asp

    Hopefully this will work!
  5. You can perform a clean install from a Windows 7 upgrade version however you will have to have a valid previous copy of Microsoft Windows XP or Microsoft Windows Vista installed to validate the upgrade and activate the product key. Please note that when migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7 you will not have an "in place upgrade" option. You will however have the option to select "custom" install when prompted. The Windows 7 install process will then copy all of your data in "My Documents" over to a Windows.old folder within Windows 7 itself. All applications and documents stored in other locations will have to be reinstalled / transferred manually.
    For more information on the Windows 7 Upgrade, please go here: http://bit.ly/3DvynK
    For additional assistance with the migration of Windows XP to Windows 7, please go here: http://tinyurl.com/mhbep4

    Jessica
    Microsoft Windows Client Team
  6. JessicaD said:
    You can perform a clean install from a Windows 7 upgrade version however you will have to have a valid previous copy of Microsoft Windows XP or Microsoft Windows Vista installed to validate the upgrade and activate the product key. Please note that when migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7 you will not have an "in place upgrade" option. You will however have the option to select "custom" install when prompted. The Windows 7 install process will then copy all of your data in "My Documents" over to a Windows.old folder within Windows 7 itself. All applications and documents stored in other locations will have to be reinstalled / transferred manually.
    For more information on the Windows 7 Upgrade, please go here: http://bit.ly/3DvynK
    For additional assistance with the migration of Windows XP to Windows 7, please go here: http://tinyurl.com/mhbep4

    Jessica
    Microsoft Windows Client Team


    In fairness, that wasn't really what I wanted to know...
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