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How do I get back Windows 7?

Last response: in Windows 8
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January 30, 2013 8:13:14 PM

Hello tech gurus,

I am an idiot. I thought Windows 8 sounded cool and MS enticed me with a cheap upgrade offer. I've been using it on my 6 month old laptop for a few weeks now and I just hate it!! I would really like to go back to W7.

I thought I was being really smart when I upgraded by creating a W7 system repair disc (as I think I read I should do online, and in the W8 setup info). It turns out that this disc only works to repair a version of W7 that is on the hard drive already, e.g. if I was having trouble starting the computer or whatever. In my stupidity, I think I have probably completely overwritten the original version of W7 that came pre-loaded on my computer. How could I find this out?

It took me a while to figure out how to boot from a disc after I'd installed W8 because it messes with the BIOS. I have that sorted now, but the (W7) Repair disc is not recognised by W8 as a bootable system recovery disc.

My questions are:
How can I be sure there is no copy of W7 on my computer somewhere? (Might there be a separate W7 partition?) I have downloaded a copy of W7 to install, but I would like to do this onto another partition so if it goes wrong I'll still have a usable computer with W8. Is this easy do do/recommended?

Given that I'm (obviously) not very good with tech, what would you recommend I do to get back Windows 7? (I don't need to keep any of my personal files, but it would be nice not to have to install drivers for every single part of my machine.)

Thanks
E

More about : back windows

January 30, 2013 8:16:48 PM

perhaps you dont need to go back. its possible, what you dont like about it can be fixed.

what is it that bothers you about windows 8?
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January 30, 2013 8:29:04 PM

I miss the start button (and I know there are lots of add-ons I could get to bring this back).
I don't think I have any use whatsoever for the funny dashboard screen.
I don't like that when I go into something other than my desktop via the dashboard, there is no "Close" button/Alt-F4.
I don't like that when I move my mouse/hover it in certain parts of the screen, toolbars/options slide in.
I've found using Chrome to be really buggy, especially with videos/flash.
I've found scrolling the scrolling function on my touchpad/mouse to work less well than on W7.


What would you say are the downsides of going back to W7, other than the obvious one of having to install it from scratch? Or the benefits of sticking with W8?

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January 30, 2013 8:35:54 PM

well, there are games that are showing a few more fps than in windows 7. albeit, there are a few games showing quite a bit less. microsofts focus is on windows 8 though so i expect those bugs to be worked out shortly. windows 8 has better memory management, faster boot and shut down times.

as for the 3rd party programs to bring back the startbar, i suggest you give them a shot. it really does make windows 8 feel like windows 7. the start bar is exactly the same and windows will boot straight to the desktop, you never have to look at or use metro again. there are even ways to disable the charm bars if that bugs you.

start8 works rather well, downside is that it is 5 dollars, though that isnt very much. there is a 30 day trial if you want to give it a shot.

however, if you want to go back to windows 7 there is no way to downgrade to it. you will have to do a completely fresh install.
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a b * Windows 8
January 30, 2013 9:14:02 PM

"If I use a Windows 8 Upgrade disc/download to upgrade my Windows 7 computer to Windows 8, can I then use my old Windows 7 disc and product key to install Windows 7 on another computer?"

No. The Windows 8 Upgrade license replaces the previous Windows 7 (or Windows Vista or Windows XP) license.

To be clear: your old version of Windows that you upgraded from can no longer be used on your current, or any other, computer.
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January 30, 2013 9:28:15 PM

:o  i had no idea buying an upgrade made your old license void

omg!
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a b * Windows 8
January 30, 2013 9:35:07 PM

neon neophyte said:
:o  i had no idea buying an upgrade made your old license void

omg!


It doesn't and never has. You have no obligation to use the upgrade, and can always go back. You are just not allowed to use both the upgrade and the original at the same time, even on the same machine.

Anyone saying otherwise is confused.
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January 30, 2013 9:35:12 PM

oh, whew.

yes, seems the moderator is a bit confused as to the intent of op. op wants to go back to his old windows 7, thus not using the windows 8 license he is currently using.
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a b * Windows 8
January 30, 2013 9:36:41 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
"If I use a Windows 8 Upgrade disc/download to upgrade my Windows 7 computer to Windows 8, can I then use my old Windows 7 disc and product key to install Windows 7 on another computer?"

No. The Windows 8 Upgrade license replaces the previous Windows 7 (or Windows Vista or Windows XP) license.

To be clear: your old version of Windows that you upgraded from can no longer be used on your current, or any other, computer.



They're not talking about using it on a different PC though, the same PC.
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a b * Windows 8
January 30, 2013 9:52:24 PM

To be clear: your old version of Windows that you upgraded from can no longer be used on your current, or any other, computer.
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a b * Windows 8
January 30, 2013 10:00:07 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
To be clear: your old version of Windows that you upgraded from can no longer be used on your current, or any other, computer.


Nasty!!

No doubt you are correct.

Because of that, I do not plan to upgrade to windows 8.
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January 30, 2013 10:06:59 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
To be clear: your old version of Windows that you upgraded from can no longer be used on your current, or any other, computer.


so, you are saying, if he formats his c: drive, he cant install his old windows 7 on it?
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January 30, 2013 10:22:09 PM

ElmoMack said:
I miss the start button (and I know there are lots of add-ons I could get to bring this back).
I don't think I have any use whatsoever for the funny dashboard screen.
I don't like that when I go into something other than my desktop via the dashboard, there is no "Close" button/Alt-F4.
I don't like that when I move my mouse/hover it in certain parts of the screen, toolbars/options slide in.
I've found using Chrome to be really buggy, especially with videos/flash.
I've found scrolling the scrolling function on my touchpad/mouse to work less well than on W7.


What would you say are the downsides of going back to W7, other than the obvious one of having to install it from scratch? Or the benefits of sticking with W8?



Windows 8 is slightly faster in most tasks and alot faster in low end computers because it has been optimised to be more efficient. It also uses less power (very handy on laptops) and in the future should see further minor speed ups as patches and service packs are released.

I also recommend giving Start 8 a go. I have it on 2 windows 8 computers and love it. You can turn off all windows 8 interface features and basically use a windows 7 interface with the windows 8 advantages mentioned above. As for chrome, are you using the desktop version or the windows 8 app ?
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January 30, 2013 10:36:38 PM

You must have the Windows 7 DVD that came packaged with your laptop, along with a driver disc. If you lost it, borrow a Windows 7 disc from a friend. Provided it's the same version, example: Home 64 bit. If you need the activation code, find the Windows sticker on the bottom of your laptop. Thecode is on there.

I'd delete all partitions and format. Good riddance to 8, what a downgrade!
http://www.forumswindows8.com/tutorials/go-back-windows...
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a b * Windows 8
January 30, 2013 11:14:06 PM

so, you are saying, if he formats his c: drive, he cant install his old windows 7 on it? < no after upgrade to 8 windows 7 license isn't valid.
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January 31, 2013 5:22:40 AM

@SR-71 BB

I understand what you saying. And I haven't personally tryed it; going back to 7 after upgrading to 8. I learned my lesson during the weeks of consumer trial and stayed away from 8 after that.

Since you're a moderator you should detail a draft article and submit it to Tom's for publication. If this is true it needs to be more widely known!

However, uninstalls of 8 must be in the thousands. Just by going to a retail site like newegg and reading the all negative Windows 8 reviews. And these are from legitimate retail purchasers of 8. Upgraders to 8, would be similarly disappointed I think. And up upgrade back to 7.
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January 31, 2013 10:02:51 PM

you can add start menu back to windows 8 with 3rd party apps. if you bought the laptop with windows 8 pro there is a downgrade path, but only with a pro os cannot use on an upgrade or home. http://www.howtogeek.com/133168/how-to-downgrade-window...

I upgraded to 8, there are some things I like and some things will take getting used to. I love having a different desktop background for each of my 3 monitors.
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a b * Windows 8
February 1, 2013 1:48:17 AM

am i psychic or have I read this exact post somewhere before? I mean like a cut and paste from over a month ago. The account is only 1 day old. sorry if I am wrong
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February 1, 2013 1:59:58 AM

Couldn't he just partition the Hdd off and install it there. It isn't writing over the old one or anything. I've got window 7 and windows 8 on my laptop using this method. But basically what Mr. Moderator is saying is he has to buy a new copy of windows or mod windows to be more like windows 7... hummmm one of these is cheaper than the other. But I'm just a 1 year old.
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May 31, 2013 2:38:29 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
so, you are saying, if he formats his c: drive, he cant install his old windows 7 on it? < no after upgrade to 8 windows 7 license isn't valid.


SR-71 Blackbird said:
I use Start 8 to make it run like 7.

http://www.stardock.com/products/start8/ < $5.00


So if I wanted to go back to my 7 Ultimate I would have to buy the software again? What the h e l l would I want to upgrade to 8 then? The money I spent on 7 Ultimate and the cost of the upgrade to 8. That's a pretty expensive OS.
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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 2:40:38 PM

So if I wanted to go back to my 7 Ultimate I would have to buy the software again? < No , just use the automated phone activation,ultimate will then activate again.
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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 2:45:16 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
so, you are saying, if he formats his c: drive, he cant install his old windows 7 on it? < no after upgrade to 8 windows 7 license isn't valid.


SR-71 Blackbird said:
So if I wanted to go back to my 7 Ultimate I would have to buy the software again? < No , just use the automated phone activation,ultimate will then activate again.


Am I missing something?
These two statements seem to be in contradiction.

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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 2:51:38 PM

I tried it last week on my son's computer and contrary to whats printed on the subject it will activate.Both licenses stay valid.
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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 2:55:48 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
I tried it last week on my son's computer and contrary to whats printed on the subject it will activate.Both licenses stay valid.


That is reassuring news. I may even try windows 8 now.
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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 2:56:49 PM

Just wanted to tell you why i changed my answer.
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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 3:56:34 PM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
Just wanted to tell you why i changed my answer.


Thanks. I value answers that come from personal experience the most.

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a b * Windows 8
May 31, 2013 3:58:13 PM

Your very welcome geofelt.
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May 31, 2013 10:37:41 PM

If you did an in-place Upgrade to Win8 then your files should be there to back up now. If you did a Custom install it may have placed a windows.old folder in the C drive root where you can find and copy out your files.
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July 7, 2013 5:36:20 AM

SR-71 Blackbird said:
so, you are saying, if he formats his c: drive, he cant install his old windows 7 on it? < no after upgrade to 8 windows 7 license isn't valid.


All of these guys who say it can't be done are full of $#!+
My son had loaded a trial version of Windows 8 and wanted to go back to Windows 7. He has an HP laptop that came preloaded without any disks. We tapped F9 and hit escape on start up and followed some simple instructions to reload Windows 7 with no problems.
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