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Windows 7, Vista Downgrade to XP Rights Updated

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 27 comments

Now when you buy a fancy version of Windows 7, you can roll back to Vista or XP!

Those of us who have used Windows 7 see it as being a worthwhile upgraded solution for both users of Vista and XP. We think it fixes and improves nearly every aspect of the OS.

So why would anyone buying a new PC packed with Windows 7 want to downgrade to Windows XP, or even Vista? Other than for business compatibility reasons, we can’t think of any (and even then, Windows 7 has XP Mode).

According to TechARP, Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate editions will include rights to downgrade to either the equivalent version of Windows Vista or Windows XP Professional (or Tablet PC).

All of these options will supposedly be available for a limited time only, as Windows XP downgrade rights might not make it past more than six months into Windows 7’s general availability.

Clearly, the option to downgrade allows Microsoft to sell Windows 7 licenses with new PCs while giving OEMs a way to sell to customers not yet ready for the latest software.

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  • 5 Hide
    war2k9 , May 29, 2009 10:11 PM
    Win 7 is the best, no need to downgrade.
  • -4 Hide
    eddieroolz , May 29, 2009 10:12 PM
    I wonder if they will keep doing this for Windows 8...

    There is a time when the old OS just has to die. Sure, it might be fast, and supposedly "secure", but no one can deny that compared to Windows 7/Vista, XP is full of holes.

    Let it die. Please.
  • 7 Hide
    jhansonxi , May 29, 2009 11:18 PM
    Considering it's only an option with the higher-end packages it seems XP availability is still a "feature".
  • Display all 27 comments.
  • 5 Hide
    Anonymous , May 29, 2009 11:20 PM
    There's nothing better than WinXP for mini notebooks, netbooks, and even laptops.
    Windows 7 is still heavier than XP. Many companies rely on software written for XP, and no say if it will work with 7.
    If I run a quick batterytest on my netbook,
    XP gives me roughly 3,7hours of battery.
    Windows 7 gives me 3,3 - 3,4 hours of battery.
    Windows Vista gives me 2,7 - 2,8 hours of battery.
    Netbooks and mini netbooks are not really made for other than basic and +4year old games running DX9.

    Running Windows 7 will decrease battery life, compared to XP for regular office jobs and internet tasks, (especially with the pre-loaded IE8 which is much heavier than IE7).
    Windows 7 has more background tasks running, more system resources taken, unless you set it to display Windows 9x/NT/2000/ME theme, the Win 7 theme utilizes more memory, GPU, and CPU to load than XP.

    Really, I see no reason why you would even say Windows 7 is THAT superior, just because it was released 6 or something years later...
    I mean, Windows7 is still not released. At this moment XP is still KING of the hill apart from extreme gaming on DX10 games.
  • 4 Hide
    hemelskonijn , May 30, 2009 1:04 AM
    I wonder if this lets me downgrade a windows 7 systembuilder OEM kit to a 64bit windows XP.

    For as far as i could find when shopping for some lenovo machine's last year the lenovo downgrade kit only let you downgrade to windows XP 32.
    Unless microsoft seriously creates a theme (or better theme-less desktop) that not only looks but also works like windows 2k i wont be spinning windows 7 any time soon.

    I know that this statement might get me a load of flames so let me ensure you i tried windows 7 and i like what they did to it but my personal preference is a lean mean uber clean close to minimalistic GUI (but not so minimalistic that they cut out the left half of the windows explorer).
  • 0 Hide
    hemelskonijn , May 30, 2009 1:05 AM
    The lenovo windows vista downgrade kit that is ! (we need edit buttons)
  • 0 Hide
    computabug , May 30, 2009 1:49 AM
    ProDigit80There's nothing better than WinXP for mini notebooks, netbooks, and even laptops.


    Read that and didn't go further.

    One word: Ubuntu


    Ok Mandriva's alright too, but I believe they are proprietary, which defeats the whole idea of open source...

    And it seems that you are associating the term 'better' directly and strictly with 'power efficient', in which case and distro would own XP.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , May 30, 2009 3:55 AM
    @ProDigit80
    You sound scared. Maybe you’re in the wrong field.

    @computabug
    Why do you guys keep embarrassing yourselves? It's been available for over 14 years, FREE, and easily obtainable, yet has relatively little market penetration. Please take a hint.

    @hemelskonijn
    If the "Windows Classic" theme included with vista and 7 isn't basic enough for you, or you just don't know how to customize the individual UI settings to tweak it even more, then a new OS is the least of your problems.
  • 3 Hide
    TheZander , May 30, 2009 4:17 AM
    olteky@ProDigit80You sound scared. Maybe you’re in the wrong field.@computabugWhy do you guys keep embarrassing yourselves? It's been available for over 14 years, FREE, and easily obtainable, yet has relatively little market penetration. Please take a hint.@hemelskonijnIf the "Windows Classic" theme included with vista and 7 isn't basic enough for you, or you just don't know how to customize the individual UI settings to tweak it even more, then a new OS is the least of your problems.


    Remember that many home users want a similar feel on their netbook that they have on their desktop at home and their PC at work. When they have Linux at home and at work, then your arguments will be more valid. Until then, Windows is still going to be the most widely used. I remember that stupid news clip where the girl bought a Dell laptop with Linux, but when she couldn't get a lot of her school stuff to work, she wanted to return it and it was a big mess. I agree, she seemed to be a few fries short of a Happy Meal upstairs, but the average consumer won't know much more than she does.

    You and I know how to make our crap work with Linux, at least the main stuff that we need. But not everybody does. And some people actually like MS Office better than free alternatives for their work, school, etc.

    If you want to make money, you market to the masses. People here keep forgetting that.
  • -9 Hide
    ossie , May 30, 2009 4:25 AM
    Oh god, xpire upgrades are getting costlier by the year... If the upgrade from vi$hta costs you an arm, the one from $even will require a leg, too.
    apache_liveswhy do you do this microsoft?

    Just for m$ to claim "more" $even licen$e$ $0ld... great for $tati$tic$ - $ame $ad vi$hta $tory.
  • 3 Hide
    tiga2001 , May 30, 2009 7:16 AM
    I think this is kind of similar to when Apple decided to switch to Intel to let people know that they can always switch back to Windows if they have to. This way, Microsoft gives people an assurance that they can switch back, but probably only a select few would. Either way, I think it's win, win. Microsoft sells more Win 7 and people who want to run XP can do it.
  • 2 Hide
    Maxor127 , May 30, 2009 4:32 PM
    I heard the same crap when Vista was released. Everyone said how awesome it was and how much better it was than XP and then there was a huge backlash.
  • -6 Hide
    apache_lives , May 30, 2009 5:37 PM
    vorless do you still use ancient operating systems like windows 98? hell no - xp is the windows 98 of todays standards - rubbish, time to move on from crap to window vista or windows 7, for microsoft to allow downgrades to xp is stupid
  • 1 Hide
    elbert , May 30, 2009 5:48 PM
    With no XP mode for windows 7 home versions I think a lot will be downgrading. Even for home users the massive amount of programs being no longer usable will make for a big headache. Almost no OEM systems come with more than 4GB's of RAM so really I see no disadvantage to sticking with XP.

    If home user cant run every program ultimate edition can it will fail. The only thing Ultimate should have over home is the use of 2 or more GPU's, 2 or more cpu sockets, and better networking. These are the things the average home user doesn't have.
  • 4 Hide
    hemelskonijn , May 30, 2009 6:00 PM
    olteky:

    So because i know how to get it the way i want i have to get windows 7?
    There is nothing wrong with windows xp it does what i want it to do so its a bit shortsighted to just tell me i am a moron for liking it.
    Also it shows you cant read that well i run several linux systems a BSD server and a powermac G4 and they all run fine.
    I am a system administrator and engineer and in general a giant geek.
    So its not that i am to used to my old gui its that i dont like the new one its not a lack of knowledge either.

    Your a moron for thinking every one likes the same stuff you do.
  • 5 Hide
    cloudNINE , May 30, 2009 9:58 PM
    It would be nice if MS made an enthusiast edition of W7.

    Meaning; this version would install a basic - light-weight - OS with no bells and whistles. At some late stage in the installation process, you would be prompted to add features as needed. I'd even be willing to shell out more ca$h for a leaned out version of W7.

    I've tried W7 and its a bit more streamline than Vista but it still has the typical MS OS bloat (more of it actually).

    Well, I can dream (W7 Enthusiast Edition!) can't I? lol
  • 2 Hide
    deltatux , May 30, 2009 10:44 PM
    I don't even know why people even rollback at all. Unlike how the media is portraying Windows Vista, I would rather run it than XP anyday and am doing so right now. Windows 7 doesn't feel like that big of an improvement either. Only Windows Server 2008 R2 feels like any improvement worth paying the money for an upgrade.
  • -1 Hide
    ossie , May 31, 2009 6:26 AM
    cloudnineIt would be nice if MS made an enthusiast edition of W7.Meaning; this version would install a basic - light-weight - OS with no bells and whistles. At some late stage in the installation process, you would be prompted to add features as needed. I'd even be willing to shell out more ca$h for a leaned out version of W7.I've tried W7 and its a bit more streamline than Vista but it still has the typical MS OS bloat (more of it actually).Well, I can dream (W7 Enthusiast Edition!) can't I? lol

    If you search thorough, the vi$hta version is there. It's called $erver 2008. And m$ followed your de$ire$... at least ca$hwise.
  • -3 Hide
    tormdk , May 31, 2009 11:16 PM
    "With no XP mode for windows 7 home versions I think a lot will be downgrading. Even for home users the massive amount of programs being no longer usable will make for a big headache. Almost no OEM systems come with more than 4GB's of RAM so really I see no disadvantage to sticking with XP.
    "

    Except that only Professional and Ultimate editions will be eledible for the downgrade program. Just as they are today. What Microsoft is offering is nothing new, it's been that way for years (Even before XP)
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