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Windows 7: Fresh install of Win7Pro using OEM disk but Anytime Upgrade Key

22 Aug 2014   #41
gregrocker

 

So installing Win 7 Home Premium in Audit Mode allows use of Anytime Upgrade key to Activate Pro version before Home Premium is even activated?

I wonder if changes were made so that Anytime Keys can be used in a Clean Install. Can someone test this?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Aug 2014   #42
stevegnh

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

No I still had to activate home premium first. But then I was able to activate the Pro anytime upgrade, still in audit mode, so my image was of Win 7 Pro. Upon finishing setup of my user and creating a profile, I did have to enter my anytime upgrade key again to activate windows, but this time I used the key as a product key on the "computer properties" page, not by running the anytime upgrade app again. Worked great. Since you can't do a clean install of Pro and use an anytime upgrade key to activate it, this is a good workaround to create the image with the desired OS version when you originally got there through the anytime upgrade program.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #43
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stevegnh View Post
No I still had to activate home premium first. But then I was able to activate the Pro anytime upgrade, still in audit mode, so my image was of Win 7 Pro. Upon finishing setup of my user and creating a profile, I did have to enter my anytime upgrade key again to activate windows, but this time I used the key as a product key on the "computer properties" page, not by running the anytime upgrade app again. Worked great. Since you can't do a clean install of Pro and use an anytime upgrade key to activate it, this is a good workaround to create the image with the desired OS version when you originally got there through the anytime upgrade program.
Thanks for sharing this, it's a piece of valuable information.

Although I have played with Sysprep and Audit Mode the last decade, enough to write those tuts, I have never even thought about doing an upgrade while installation is not finished due that OOBE was interrupted to enter Audit Mode.

So you did not need your Home Premium key at all then? Clean install until first OOBE boot, enter Audit Mode before the initial user was created and OOBE asked for Home Premium key, then Anytime Upgrade in Audit Mode with your Professional key, and after exiting Audit Mode and going back to finalize OOBE boot you again entered the Professional key.

That's really cool. Opens new doors, new possibilities. I think I have to now test a normal in-place upgrade in Audit Mode .
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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23 Aug 2014   #44
stevegnh

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

I DID have to activate Home Premium first in Audit mode. But that's the only time I needed it. Maybe how I rewrote my last reply wasn't clear. Then once activated on home premium I was able to upgrade to pro using the anytime upgrade key. That also allowed me to be able to create my system image and save it to a network share, something I can't do with home premium, and have my system image already be pro.

I think once in audit mode you do have a complete install as Administrator. It really worked great. I finished and exited audit mode and created my everyday user account, Then I just used my professional anytime upgrade key to activate professional (not using the anytime upgrade feature this second time) but rather the regular activation method in system properties.

I did not need my home premium key at all when completing the first user account setup after exiting audit mode, just the pro anytime upgrade key.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #45
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stevegnh View Post
I think once in audit mode you do have a complete install as Administrator.
That's correct. The built-in administrator account is the only one existing when you interrupt installation to enter Audit Mode and will be the one you use as long as you stay in Audit Mode.

As Audit Mode can only be exited by telling Sysprep to boot to OOBE, every reboot while in Audit Mode automatically returns to Audit Mode using the built-in admin account.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #46
gregrocker

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stevegnh View Post
I DID have to active Home Premium first in Audit mode. But that's the only time I needed it. Maybe how I rewrote my last reply wasn't clear. Then once activated on home premium I was able to upgrade to pro using the anytime upgrade key. That also allowed me to be able to create my system image and save it to a network share, something I can't do with home premium, and have my system image already be pro.
How does this differ from setting up and activating Win7 then capturing a backup image? What added benefit did it give you.

I'm sorry, but I'm not getting the difference except that there's extra work in Audit Mode.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #47
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
How does this differ from setting up and activating Win7 then capturing a backup image? What added benefit did it give you.

I'm sorry, but I'm not getting the difference except that there's extra work in Audit Mode.
I have tried to answer you in posts #37 & #39. Please read said posts again, with thought.

We are talking about an initial system image, a Windows image that can be used instead of a clean install. Your way in doing it, the image already contains a user account, when restored boots to desktop in an already setup Windows and is hardware dependent.

Doing it in Audit Mode gives the same result, a highly customized custom image, but as it has no user accounts because the OOBE boot is not yet finished, you can start from a clean slate. The image when restored boots to OOBE, not to desktop, asking the first user account to be created (as none exist), computer named and so on. The image is highly hardware independent and can be restored to any hardware.

You are of course right that Audit Mode procedure includes some extra work: You have to once press CTRL+SHIFT+F3 to enter Audit Mode, then give one Sysprep /generalize /oobe command to exit Audit Mode. Other than that both procedures are exactly the same. According to my own quite extensive experience I would estimate that this extra effort might take up to a few seconds.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #48
gregrocker

 

Yes, I understand that SysPrep is useful for changing hardware but the OP does not need to change hardware, only a backup image for this PC with Anytime Upgrade activated.

Why would he want to start all over to set up a new account if recovering from an image, when instead he would have his account all set up and ready to go after a simple recovery of factory image? If a data partition is used then the links are all still intact to the latest data set.

There was also no usefulness for activating with the Professional Anytime Upgrade key, which I believe is what interested him in possibly using SysPrep. Saving a simple backup image with Professional already activated remains his solution here.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #49
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Greg, you are missing the whole point here, you clearly do not understand. I give up after this last try.

Sysprep in this case is totally irrelevant, it's only needed because there's no other way to exit Audit Mode and return to OOBE than to use the /OOBE switch with Sysprep. You want to use Audit Mode, you need to use Sysprep when finished. This OP, this whole method he has used, only uses Sysprep to exit Audit Mode.

What is relevant is the Audit Mode. Entering Audit Mode when Windows installation has done its last reboot and the OOBE phase starts really gives user a chance to customize Windows image exatly as wanted, then capturing that image and using it instead of clean install you have all benefits of a clean install (no existing user account, computer boots to OOBE instead of already laid out and set up Windows, total hardware independence and so on).

It really comes down to this: That you, or me, or any other geek do not understand something does not automatically mean it's not good. Many procedures, to us unknown methods can be good and productive even if we do not understand them.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #50
stevegnh

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

I think his point is that in my situation, given that I was creating the image for the same PC only, that the benefit I get from it is smaller than other situations, if at all. To me, I like the clean, no user, Out of the Box image, but some may not care as much. And in my case, the next time I decide to wipe the PC, I won't even have to bother with the Home Premium license key at all.
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 Fresh install of Win7Pro using OEM disk but Anytime Upgrade Key




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