Windows 7 upgrade MUST READ --------- DO NOT REFORMAT YOUR HD

Submitted: Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 13:19
ThreadID: 79701 Views:3783 Replies:11 FollowUps:22
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This is a must read for people who have Windows 7 upgrade.

If you use Windows 7 upgrade you have to have a legit licensed copy of either XP or Vista.

Well after 2 days of headaches I thought I would post this to stop others have problems.

It all started when I decided to upgrade one of our PC's from Office 2007 professional to a free upgrade of Office 2010 Professional, loaded Office 2010 with no issues but their email software "Outlook 2010" decided to have a dummy spit and could not locate it's data file......and I could not force it to find it.

The short of it ....

OPTION A - I removed Office 2010 and thinking if I reinstalled it, Outlook would create a new date file and we would be off and running...WRONG.

OPTION B - Format HD and reinstall Windows 7. (no big deal)

So after trying option 1 and not getting anywhere I them went to option 2.

Every thing was going great until Windows 7 on line validation came back and said the product key is not valid.

So on the internet.......I eventually found that if you are using Windows 7 upgrade and you format your hard drive Windows 7 can not be validated unless you reinstall your previous operating system (XP or Vista) and then upgrade Windows 7 upgrade.

The problem I have is we upgraded from Windows 7 from XP about 6 months ago and throw out XP after running Windows 7 with out issues for 3 months (6 year old operating system disc why would I want to keep it).

So phoned up Microsoft with the issue and got told " The only way to reinstall Windows 7 upgrade is install you previous operating system and them reinstall Windows 7, I advised them I did not have the previous operating system as it got tossed out, the response was bad luck you have a disc that can not be used and you will have to go and buy a full version of Windows 7 and reinstall it...no ifs or buts.

I likened it with the guy on the phone to being like "if I changed a light bulb in my house I would have to reapply and pay a reconnection fee to the electricity company".




So if you have Windows 7 upgrade DO NOT REFORMAT YOUR HD and if you do and you don't have the previous copy of your operating system handy Microsoft wants another $300 for your effort.

Bear in mind I have not changed any hardware.

My reply to Microsoft s "I'm against pirated software but I can understand why people do it now, I informed them I not going to buy a new copy but I will go online and find a VALIDATION HACK".

So any I a software pirate?

Or have I been forced into it by Microsoft.

By the way don't upgrade to Office 2010...to put it bluntly it's 300 programs compressed into 1, stay with Office 2007





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Reply By: garrycol - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 13:58

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 13:58
There is nothing new in this - has always been so - you cannot do a fresh install of any upgrade product if the original product was not on the computer.

Even goes back to pre Win 95 days.

You only need to do a basic installation of the old OS for the upgrade to work.

Garry
AnswerID: 422368

Follow Up By: Mr Pointyhead - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:35

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:35
In fairness to the original poster, many of the earlier M$ products would only verify that you have the original media of the old product. They would ask you to insert the media then verify it prior to allowing the newer product to be reinstalled.

It can be good housekeeping to regularly to a clean install of you OS and licensed products to ensure you system stays in a good working condition.

Clean installs is a guaranteed way of removing all the crap-ware that various web sites etc insist on installing on your PC. Also it forces you to think about what you have installed on your PC. (I am inclined to build up a collection of junk I no longer use over time)

M$'s action makes this much more difficult.

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FollowupID: 692732

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:21

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:21
But they don't tell you, you would think with all there programming abilities they would take out the "Format HD' option or at least warn you before proceeding.

There is nothing on any material saying different.
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FollowupID: 692741

Follow Up By: MrBitchi (QLD) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:30

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:30
The upgrade media is no different to the full product. It'sd just the key that tells M$ that it's an upgrade.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:45

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:45
Ahh....but speaking to Microsoft they said it is a full version, if you installed it form Vista then its an upgrade but from XP it is a clean install.
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Reply By: Member No 1- Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:02

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:02
lots of programs do that....
windows ME to XP did it also i think...or was that going up to ME????

Quickbooks did it with V8 to 9 and then onto 2000 to 2002... every time I have a crash I have to load 3 disks...have 2004 (complete new..not upgrade) but wont install it as it requires one to validate the program every two years

get an illegal copy........lol...and then delete WGA...the thingy that rings bill and tells him your programs aint legit
AnswerID: 422369

Reply By: vk1dx - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:09

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:09
And people have criticised us for keeping all our computers on XP.

I feel vindicated.

Phil
AnswerID: 422370

Reply By: fugwurgin - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:28

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:28
HI, i would like to defend Office 2010. Its far superior than Office 2007.
Of course an "Upgrade" means you are "upragrading" therefore a previous version must exist. Otherwise it wouldnt be as cheap to buy compared to a "full version".

The lesson to be had is to keep your discs (especially the operating system discs), most pc's now have a copy on the hdd in a recovery partition, dont give in to piracy and be a hack, it can open up lots of security issues with your system as well as you personally as it is illegal!!!!

a "bull at a gate" approach is not recommened also!

AnswerID: 422375

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:28

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:28
I take it your a user of Office 2010 with some experience?

Office 2010 upgrade is a clean install not requiring a previous version to work.

Most high end computers custom designed for a reason don't have a recovery partition, only OEM computers do.

"a "bull at a gate" approach is not recommened also!"

I don't think so what other options should I of done before formating?
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Follow Up By: fugwurgin - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:45

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:45
OEM computers either have a partition or a utility that asks you to create recovery discs upon first use of the computer. Custom computers are another kettle of fish.
I didnt mean any offence by saying that a bull at a gate approach is not recommended. I just wanted to point out that sometimes its better to think about what it is you are actually doing, ie taking into consideration what you are installing, in this case an "upgrade" version of win 7. Considering it was an "UPGRADE", when you delete the HDD (including old OS) what is it that you are actually upgrading from? the HDD is blank. I was just pointing out a little scope would have saved you the trouble.
But that is all hindsight, my point was for other punters who may have similar experiences.
Instead of being a validation hack, see if anyone you know has an OS disc for XP they will lend you, then put your upgrade over the top of it and keep it legit. That way you can get all the updates and security features without risking your computers security or criminal action (not that i think M$ is going to go after small fry users like you and me- but you never know).
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:58

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:58
Ahh....but speaking to Microsoft they said it is a full version, if you installed it form Vista then its an upgrade but from XP it is a clean install.

I'm sure there is a way around it and still keep it legal, it just annoys me that by doing the right thing and buying a legal version Microsoft them selves make it imposable to comply.

Reformatting a HD is common practice and no big deal and this is one thing I and most others would not think would happen.

The criminal action thing is a good one, I have bought a legit product and used it under their terms, using it on the same computer it was originally activated on and have not changed any hardware on the computer.

Only Microsoft can get away with it.
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Follow Up By: Member - Christopher P (NSW) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:08

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:08
do you still have windows product key on your machine, as long as you have that key you can borrow a friends copy and do it that way!!!!!

if it is a custom buit like mines is then your run into problems. ps i have a few copies lying around if you still have the key
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Reply By: Member - Christopher P (NSW) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:34

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:34
Have you done anything else to your hard drive, because if you haven't then we might be able to recover your old xp system windows key?

Whare do you live???/
AnswerID: 422377

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:32

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:32
It doesn't look for the product key as such.

Microsoft wont tell you what it is looking for.

The HD has been written over so the chances of finding a key in 500 gig is a tedious process.

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FollowupID: 692744

Follow Up By: Member - Christopher P (NSW) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:42

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:42
what you need is a GET DATA BACK for NTFS, spare 500 gig hard drive external, another machine, pull you prresent hard drive out and setup for slave, then put in new machine, start get data back for ntfs, select your main drive with the data you need to recover, select drive to reocver to, start and leave. you should be able to recover nearly everything, if your capable to do that, then the next part is easier, you need magical jellybeans, this program recovers allof ms keys on your machine!!!! ..

If your in newcastle i can do it, and i have the storage capacity to do it. if in qld i can suggest two people
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:02

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:02
It would be cheaper to buy a new version.
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Follow Up By: Member - Christopher P (NSW) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:39

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:39
if you have the sticker with the key still attached to your machine, i should or someone should have a copy that you are legally allowed to use for back up purposes, then its simply easier and cheaper borrowing a copy.
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Reply By: Notso - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:49

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 14:49
Well I didn't do the windows upgrade but I did do the Office 2007 to 2010 upgrade two days ago.

I bought office 2007 that came with 5 programs, Word, Excell, Outlook, Presentations and Publisher.

Downloaded the update and got Word, Excell, Outlook, Presentations, Publisher, and a little present from Microsoft, MS Access, which wasn't in the Office 2007 package.

It all installed and ran like a dream.
AnswerID: 422378

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:42

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:42
What mucked it up was me moving the PST and Data file to another location for of site back up purposes.

Don't get me wrong Office 2010 is a very powerful product and what it can do and the way it does things is different to 2007.

It seems to be trying to be a jack of all trades and a master of non.

For example setting up multi email accounts with separate sorting folders using rules and in Outlook 2007 you had one folder with sub folders that had all the data except email account info, now in 2010 you have many folders with sub folder in different locations.


The issue I'm having now is with Windows 7 not Office 2010


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Reply By: Shaker - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:13

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:13
There should be a validation sticker for XP on your case.
AnswerID: 422379

Reply By: MrBitchi (QLD) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:40

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 15:40
This may help..

Installing Win7

AnswerID: 422381

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:40

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:40
Your a bloody legend.

Did option 2 and it checked on line and came back validated and the trial period disappeared.

Thank you so much.
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Follow Up By: MrBitchi (QLD) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:58

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:58
You're welcome.
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 18:32

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 18:32
So why didn't the guy on the Microsoft Activation help desk know.....perhaps it a secret they don't want people who have licensed software to know.
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FollowupID: 692771

Reply By: Member - Graham H (QLD) - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:18

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 16:18
If you still have the case with your number on it I can send you a disc with XP on it.



I chucked out several on Saturday after changing to Win 7

AnswerID: 422386

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 20:17

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 20:17
Thanks graham...all sorted.
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Reply By: howesy - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 19:59

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 19:59
I went through a similar thing after purchasing new board processor and HD i purchased an OEM version of windows 7 to load on to it. had it for a few days and a lightning strike took out the motherboard through the lan. No worries got a new board and rang microsoft and was told to bad so sad we consider the motherboard to be the heart and soul change anything you like but change the board and we wont let you reinstall you OEM version even though records showed I only activated it days before. Several abusive emails later the computer shop told me to ring in the wee hours so you get someone in the states and they couldnt be more helpful. didnt even ask why i just said I need to get my windows seven activated and they rattled off a code and no worries.
I suggest the after hours service.
AnswerID: 422404

Reply By: Bazooka - Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 21:21

Monday, Jun 28, 2010 at 21:21
Glad to see you found a fix Olcoolone. I sympathise with your comment re Microsoft - I've had support experiences ranging from excellent to don't care, naff off. Obviously depends on who you get, their experience, and maturity. That said, reformatting your HD without making a complete system backup (there are free programs available to do this) is a little risky to say the least.
AnswerID: 422418

Follow Up By: Member No 1- Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 08:24

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 08:24
with the small cost of a 500g or more HD these days it makes sense to keep the old one and replace it with a new larger one, while keeping the old as a back up storage device on the comp while retaining ALL the old stuff
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Follow Up By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 10:03

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 10:03
Whats the risky part?

We run 3 hard drives (1 x 500g and 2 x 1tg) in each of our main PC's so all of our data is not on the same drive as the operating system, so when we format we don't have to worry about loosing anything important and all the drivers are kept in a safe 1g partition.

We also have off site data backup just in case, our PC's are used for business and if one goes down we can keep on going on another PC or reformat and reload Windows and have it working again in about 40 minutes.

It's really surprising how many people and more so businesses don't back up data constantly, we learnt about 4 years ago when one of our PC's went down.....took us about 3 weeks of hard work to restore the data from paper back ups.

This is even more important now as most businesses are going paperless meaning most documents are scanned and stored hence the need for large hard drives.



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FollowupID: 692822

Follow Up By: Member No 1- Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 10:29

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 10:29
"we learnt about 4 years ago when one of our PC's went down.....took us about 3 weeks of hard work to restore the data from paper back ups."

bit slow aint ya...i learnt way back in 1999....lol
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Follow Up By: Bazooka - Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 10:35

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 10:35
Sorry, must have misunderstood your posts, as it appeared to me that you had wiped Vista/XP and couldn't recover it to re-do your upgrade (obviously you don't need original OS disks if you have a system backup to reload).
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FollowupID: 692831

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 13:24

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2010 at 13:24
Yeah I know.... suppose it's the same a 4x4ers who travel with no Sat phone or HF radio or PLB or First aid kit or Recovery gear or Tools.......you think it will never happen to your or someone else will help you out.

Lucky we carry all that gear and I've learnt to back up my data, but then again lost data is life threatening!

Looks like Iv'e got all my bases covered.



Bazooka, what happened was we updated from XP to Windows 7 about 6 months ago using the Windows 7 upgrade disc, we reformatted a HD last weekend and the product key came back in valid when we tried to validate it in the initial Windows 7 setup.

Spoke to Microsoft who said bad luck and then MrBitchi came back with a link to a web site that enabled you to do it legally just the way Microsoft wanted it to be done, tried validating it through control panel/systems/window validation and it worked first time within a minute.

Only if Microsoft tech guy told me this to start with.

What happens is when you use an upgrade it looks for a previous version of windows on you HD and the first time it register's it looks at the hardware, when you reformat you HD and try and load it and do the online validation (before windows starts) it looks for a previous version again....and not being able to find it it says the windows version you are using is in valid, all you do is untick the validate on line now box, windows install and you do it through the systems folder.

When you do it through the systems folder it looks at the hardware configuration that is recorded for the disc product key....so aslong as you haven't changed any major hardware it will validate ok.

Simple.
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FollowupID: 692845

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