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Windows 7: upgrading from starter to pro

15 Feb 2010   #1

windows 7 starter
upgrading from starter to pro

Hi-- My new netbook came installed with windows 7 starter. I purchased a license for windows 7 pro upgrade.

For some reason I couldn't use the anytime upgrade program-- couldn't create a recovery disk. Any idea what i should do? I'm not concerned with backing up files bc i haven't really put anything on it yet.

I'm currently downloading the upgrade. Should I just install it?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

15 Feb 2010   #2

Windows 7 Professional x64

This should looks like you need to do a "custom install" or Clean install. You say you have Windows 7 "Starter"....what country are you in?

Windows 7 Upgrade Chart | Windows 7 Center
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #3

windows 7 starter

lol, I don't even know what that means!! A custom install that is. Can I just open the auto run file when the upgrade files are done downloading?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

15 Feb 2010   #4

Windows 7 Professional x64

I believe it you got the key from "anytime upgrade" you can only go to Home Premium.

Windows 7 editions - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

To use Professional, you will probably need to create an .iso and boot to the DVD with the install files on it, then install Windows 7 "clean". You will not be able to run the program from within Windows.

When the files finish downloading...see if it's an .iso file. If it is, just get a DVD and right click the file and burn to disk. (If starter has a built in .iso burner like the other editions)

Then back up all your data, because you will have to put the DVD in and boot to it and do a clean install. I am assuming you have an upgrade. You might need this tutorial.

Clean Install with a Upgrade Windows 7 Version
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #5
Microsoft MVP


When you say you purchased a license for windows 7 pro upgrade, did you purchase an Anytime Upgrade license and attempt to unlock features (which is what Anytime Upgrade does)?

What is the exact failure message you get when you attempt this?

What is the download you are doing now, and from where? There is no download with Anytime Upgrade, so you must be downloading the installer which came with a retail XP pro Upgrade you purchased?

If so, then burn the ISO to DVD using ImgBurn at 4x speed with Verify - it never fails. Boot DVD to clean install: Clean Install Windows 7 The DVD will see the previous Windows 7 OS during bootup to allow use of Upgrade version key. Otherwise use the workaround given in Nate's post above.

There is a workaround to force the installer to in-place Upgrade from Starter to another version, but it sounds like you don't really care about saving your installed programs and a clean install is always best, anyway.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #6

windows 7 starter

Hi Greg-- let's see if I can clarify.

my netbook (with no internal optical drive) came installed with windows 7 starter. I downloaded the anytime upgrade program and i told me i can upgrade, but when i actually tried to do it it told me to make a recover disk and I got stuck.

My employer (who bought this netbook for me) purchased an upgrade through volume licensing. I'm currently downloading through the volume licensing service center.

I guess i need to know if i need to borrow an external optical drive to burn a recovery disk-- and i'm not sure i know how to do that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #7
Microsoft MVP


You can download and burn the Recov disk or Installer ISO to a USB flash stick:

USB Windows 7 Installation Key Drive - Create

Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool

Download Windows 7 System Recovery Discs — The NeoSmart Files

I would imagine Anytime wants you to have a way to repair if Windows 7 won't startup, which is also a very good reason to burn installer ISO to DVD or stick.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #8

windows 7 starter


I'll try this. THanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #9

windows 7 starter

i can't figure out it i can use my external hard drive since i don't have an 8gb flash.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2010   #10
Microsoft MVP


You can use a 4gb flash stick if you've got one for burning Windows 7 installer ISO, or the repair ISO is less than a gig. Harder to boot USB external.

I don't see why you couldn't run the Windows 7 installer from Starter desktop by either mounting the ISO or extracting its files to desktop or external to run Setup. You would need to choose Custom install and overwrite the current partition. Your files should be saved to a Windows.old folder but back them up to be sure.

Be sure to have the Repair ISO burned to flash stick in advance in case of problems where Windows 7 will not boot. Later, burn the full Windows 7 installer ISO to flash so you have it, or keep it stored on external.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 upgrading from starter to pro

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