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Windows 7: Upgrade XP partition to Windows 7 in dual boot

22 Jun 2010   #1

Windows 7
Upgrade XP partition to Windows 7 in dual boot


I have a dual boot scenario currently on an Intel 80GB SSD, with one partition as XP Pro, and the other is Windows 7, split 20GB(XP)/50GB(7).

The XP partition needs to be upgraded to Windows 7 for my wife's work remote access, and it will also include Office 2010 Pro.

Will I run into any issues dual booting into the existing Windows 7 partition after the upgrade, or should I just reinstall our personal Windows 7 OS after the upgrade is installed?

I have other hard drives to use as well if space becomes an issue, but I'd like to keep the existing Windows 7 install without starting from scratch.


My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Jun 2010   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


Only having 20g would a issue for you, hope this helps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #3

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86

XP cannot be upgraded to Windows 7. Only a clean install is possible. You'll need to backup all your data before installing Windows 7 and reinstall all your apps afterwards.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Jun 2010   #4

Windows 7

I guess I'm using "upgrade" in the sense that it won't be XP anymore. The partition will be wiped no matter what.

I'll have to dual boot Win 7/Win 7 no matter what, but I'd like to keep the existing Win 7 install intact.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #5

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86

As Theog has already pointed out, 20gb would be really cramped, even for just the OS and programs. You would need to keep a strict tab on what data enters that space whether by installing apps or user data. Ideally, Windows 7 should be installed in a roomier space, say another hdd, but if dual boot is mandatory, you'll just have to go ahead with it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #6

Windows 7

Would it be possible to install the new Win 7 on its own HD, then somehow reintroduce the existing Win 7 on its current HD (I'd resize it's partition to reclaim the old XP partition) and dual boot?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #7
Microsoft MVP


Why not just delete the XP installation, then Resize the Windows 7 into its HD space? If you want to do this, post back a screenshot of your Disk Management using Snipping Tool in Start Menu, and we will give you the steps as the MBR will likely need to be recovered into Windows 7.

You never state the reason why you want a Windows 7 Dual Boot. Have you bought a higher version you want to use instead, then want to transfer files/programs over gradually? We are left to guess since you don't say.

Having a dual boot on separate HD's is the best arrangment since you can then boot via the BIOS boot order and one-time BIOS Boot Menu, keeping the HD's independent - whereas a Windows-managed Dual Boot makes them interlinked.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #8

Windows 7

My wife uses the current XP partition for her job, and the current Win 7 is for personal use.

Her company needs to upgrade all users to Win 7, and due to user control/limitations/VPN, we can't use the work Win 7 for personal use.

Sorry for the lack of info, I hope that makes sense.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #9
Microsoft MVP


You can use free Partition Wizard bootable CD to delete XP, resize Windows 7 to make more room for your new install if you want, then create and format the new partition using Windows 7 installer. The install will create a Dual Boot with the other Windows 7, or use EasyBCD 2.0 beta to add it back to Boot Menu.

If you want to use separate HD's, then use PW CD to delete XP, Resize Windows 7 into its space and mark it Active, then boot the Windows 7 DVD Repair Console, click through to Recovery Tools list to run Startup Repair up to 3 separate times with reboots until Windows 7 starts on its own.

Now unplug old Windows 7 HD to install new Windows 7 and plug in new HD to install. Once it is installed, plug back in old Windows 7 HD, set preferred HD to boot first in BIOS (after DVD drive), then use BIOS one-time Boot Menu key given on first boot screen to boot the other Windows 7 HD. This keeps the HD"s independent to come and go as you please.

If you want a WIndows-managed Dual Boot, install EasyBCD 2.0 beta to first-booting OS to Add the other on Add/Remove tab, but they then become interlinked and it's harder to remove one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2010   #10

Windows 7

Thanks Greg! Would it be OK to use Gparted instead of Partition Wizard?

Is it also OK if the new Win 7 is installed before I do the partition resizing/reinstall of the current Win 7? This is only due to time constraints with my wife's company help desk.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Upgrade XP partition to Windows 7 in dual boot

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