First, I have read many of the other posts, but my question is very specific, I do understand the basics of the process and the limitations. Thank you for your time reading and replying!
I have a computer running a 32 bit oem version of windows 7 home. I really need to change this to a 64 bit version. I do not want to do this illegally.
As a college student, Microsoft has made available a 64 bit version Upgrade of Windows 7 Professional for only $30.
So my question is as follows,
can I buy this upgrade copy of 7 professional, perform a clean install of windows prof. 64 bit with the upgrade disc, and then use my current oem 32 bit home disc and or license key, to validate that i do in fact have a copy of windows currently.
So technically I wont be "Upgrading" from 32 to 64, I will be re-installing.
I have asked several tech savy friends, and while they dont think it cant work, they are unsure. Essentially I am asking if anyone knows what validation windows requires for its upgrade discs. I am given to understand it requires you to put in your original windows disc at some point, and i assume your original key, but will it accept a 32 bit disc/key?
Worst case scenario I will simply have to purchase a 64 bit version of home.
Why can't you just use the key from the $30 pro upgrade; I think it should work. You have to insert the disk when windows is running and it will detect your current version before running the installer. I think it should give an option to do a clean install after than.
Well technically speaking the key you have right now should be usable in both 32bit and 64 bit versions. As long as you are using the same hardware(and not replacing the motherboard for example). You can download a windows 7 64 bit .isos from microsoft directly and just use your current key to install the 64bit version. I've downloaded all kinds of .isos from them, like 32/64 home/prof and ultimate, depending on what version I need for one of my many builds. You shouldn't even have to buy the upgrade to change from the 32 to 64 bit.
You can also create a custom install dvd if you really want. Shoot me pm if you need a link.
Edit: From what I know about the upgrade install, no it doesn't check if you had a previous key. It will usually just check if a previous version of windows is installed or not, and set a specific registry trigger. If this trigger is not in place you cannot activate your new install. This is meant to prevent an upgrade from being installed on a blank system. I've done 3 upgrades, and not once have I been asked about the old key OS key that was being upgraded. I used the student upgrade myself, and you should get a option to download .exe file, or alternatively you can download the .iso (preferred way).
By the way, this was a pain when w7 launched. They didn't offer a .iso till 2 months after launch and obviously this caused lots of trouble for Microsoft since you couldn't install the 64 bit with the .exe unless you already had 64 bit XP installed. You had to send them an email to get an .iso link.