Build a Windows Vista Upgrade Parachute

Advantages Of An In-place Upgrade From XP

An in-place upgrade will preserve all your existing settings. For example, in Outlook you'll keep account settings, signatures and offline storage files; in Word, custom.dic and templates; in Excel all your macros. It will also preserve your applications, whether they run under Vista or not. However, if on balance you favor a clean install, then Vista has Microsoft's best ever tool to migrate your settings: Windows Easy Transfer Wizard. This utility is an improved version of XP's User Settings Migration Tool. The Transfer Wizard won't bring over those precious applications, though - you'll have to reinstall those.

Another advantage of an in-place upgrade is that replacing a graphics card or adding memory (if necessary) is much less expensive than buying a new system unit. You'll also save money by buying an upgrade license as opposed to a new license.

Disadvantages Of An In-place Upgrade

With an in-place upgrade from XP to Vista you may be lucky and have everything work perfectly - or you may join the ranks of the disappointed. In the past, whenever I have tried to get an old computer to run a new operating system, I have found one problem after another. It's very annoying to throw good money after bad. At least with Vista you can run the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor, which is a free download, and will tell you precisely what you need to change on your existing system before it will run a particular edition of Vista. I'll talk more about the Advisor later.

Which Edition Of Vista?

There are five versions of Vista:

  1. Windows Vista Home Basic
  2. Windows Vista Home Premium
  3. Windows Vista Business
  4. Windows Vista Ultimate
  5. Windows Vista Enterprise (can only be purchased under Microsoft Software Assurance Enterprise License)
  • Performing an upgrade to Vista is quite straight forward just follow the instructions here -
    Personally I dont think you really need any tools to install or upgrade to vista but whatever floats your boat.