Last week I reminded GeekTonic readers that the Windows 7 preorder 1/2 off special was about to end. Being one who tends to “take doses of his own medicine,” I preordered my own copy as well. Today I learned of a little change in the process of the upgrade process that sort of stinks – it’s at least less friendly than before.
Let me explain. Before, when you wanted to upgrade from XP to Vista, the verification process – the way Microsoft verified that you really owned a previous, valid version of Windows was to simply insert a qualified copy of Windows and move on. Well now, to upgrade from Windows 7 you’ll actually need to have an activated qualified version of Windows (like XP) installed and running on that PC to continue with the upgrade process.
Now I know that will probably be fine for most people, but what if you didn’t know this little tidbit and you had already formatted your OS drive? Or maybe you’ve been using Linux for a while even though you have a copy of XP for that computer, but want to go with Windows 7? In these cases you would need to install XP and THEN do the upgrade to Windows 7. This extra step will be more than annoying for some people and in the end probably won’t deter any wrongdoing by those that are trying to “beat the system” anyway.
Update: Perhaps a link to WinSuperSite will help this conversation. Paul Thurrott says this about the upgrade from XP:
“In order to install the upgrade version of Windows 7, you must have a qualifying Windows operating system installed and activated. You cannot install an upgrade version of Windows 7 on a blank hard drive. The installation procedure does not ask you to insert a Windows disc in the drive for verification, the actual qualifying operating system must be installed.
If you do not have a qualifying Windows operating system installed with a genuine license activated, then you cannot use the upgrade version of Windows 7 - you would need a "full version" Windows 7 license.”
Hopefully that helps clear up the confusion in the comments