Subscriber and friend Sam Boggs wrote recently to report on his experience upgrading from Windows Vista to Windows 7 — and how much he likes it now:
Wanted to let you know I am highly pleased with how the Windows 7 Prof upgrade turned out. It was a challenge, and I finally took the computer to a local computer shop. It took a while, but they did a great job with the installation. It was $75 well spent.
As you might expect, it was then a many-hour process at home to reinstall old individual programs since this required a clean install of the W7 operating system. I was able to find updated drivers for most programs and hardware, even one bought back in the Windows Me era!
I was disappointed that some would not work with W7, but this then made me very happy with the XP Mode that comes with W7 Prof. This “virtual machine” works great, and allows me to use several older programs that wouldn’t otherwise work on W7 (and some didn’t even work on Vista). Specifically, Lotus SmartSuite (esp Lotus 123), Palm Pilot, and Roxio Easy VHS to DVD creator.
At first, none of the programs I put into XP mode would work. In fact I couldn’t even install my printer. Then a google search pointed me to the USB dropdown at the top of the XP screen, which allowed me to attach (and later release, if needed), things attached to USB ports.
And if I want to take a trip down memory lane, I can even open some old Lotus WordPro documents! Hmmm.
That’s great to hear about how pleased Sam is with Windows 7. A lot of people have Vista and wonder about Windows 7.
Although Microsoft put in a lot of effort to make it possible for some Vista installations to upgrade to Windows 7, for many people, a clean install of Windows 7 is the only choice.
For example, if you’re running 32-bit Windows Vista on a computer with a 64-bit processor, you can upgrade to 32-bit Windows 7 without doing a clean install. But, if you want to upgrade to 64-bit Windows 7, that requires a clean install of Windows. Any upgrade from Windows XP requires a clean install.
What’s a clean install? It’s when you install windows into an empty/blank hard drive partition. For most people, this means backing up their data, deleting the old Windows installation (and programs and data) from the drive, and installing Windows, and then their programs, and copying their data from their backup to the new installation.
After experiences upgrading earlier versions of Windows over previous installations, I always do clean installls when I do upgrades of my Windows versions.
I ran into issues of old Windows files that caused problems later — not initially after the upgrade, but after some of the subsequent Windows Updates were released.
Don’t need XP Mode (only available with Win7 Professional or Win7 Ultimate)? Get a great deal on upgrades to Windows 7 Home Premium!