meldog
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meldog asked on

Upgrade from Vista 32bit to 7 64bit

i have windows vista ultimate 32 and i want to upgrade to windows 7 64 bit ( i want access to the additional memory capability of 64 bit) but i have 3 years of files on my hard drive i dont want to lose ( games, save game files, work related item. ect,.....is it possible to upgrade to windows 7 64 bit without losing my current files...if so which version do i buy and whats the proccess
Andre Da Costa
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Andre Da Costa replied on
MVP Wiki Author Community Moderator MCC: Content Creator

Upgrade paths:
When making significant changes to your computer such as an upgrade, it is always recommended you backup your system prior to installing a new version of Windows. In your case, you can upgrade to Windows 7 depending on edition and architecture of Windows Vista you have installed. If you are running a 32 bit version of Vista and want to upgrade to a 64 bit version (edition of Windows 7), you will have to a do clean install, this applies vice-versa.

If you are running consumer editions of Windows Vista such as Home Basic or Premium, you can only upgrade to either Windows 7 Home Premium or Ultimate. Also, you cannot do downgrades, which means, if you are running Windows Vista Ultimate now, you cannot downgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium. You must do logical upgrades:

Windows Vista Home Basic > Windows 7 Home Basic, Premium or Ultimate
Windows Vista Home Premium > Windows 7 Home Premium or Ultimate
Windows Vista Business > Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise or Ultimate
Windows Vista Enterprise > Windows 7 Enterprise
Windows Vista Ultimate > Windows 7 Ultimate.

Resources:

Notebooks: http://www.notebooks.com/2009/10/07/using-windows-easy-transfer-in-windows-7/

http://windows.microsoft.com/windows-easy-transfer


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TrekDozer
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TrekDozer replied on
i have windows vista ultimate 32... is it possible to upgrade to windows 7 64 bit without losing my current files...if so which version do i buy and whats the proccess

It is not possible. You can only in place upgrade to Windows Ultimate 32bit.

 

Custom Clean Install Steps

Times to use:
Moving from XP to 7, or unsupported in place upgrade paths (ex: Vista Home to 7 Pro)
Moving from a 32 bit Windows system to a 64 bit system, or changing languages
Don't want to do an in place upgrade, or you want a fresh/clean install

You can use an Upgrade or Full Windows 7 disk to do a custom clean install. This will remove all your programs, but you can save your files and settings to an external storage before doing so. You will have to reinstall all your programs after installing Windows 7. Here are the steps:

1. Run Windows Upgrade Advisor to see if there are any known issues that might affect the installation and whether you can install the 32 or 64 bit version of Windows 7.
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows/downloads/upgrade-advisor

2. Backup all your files and settings to avoid losing docs, photos, and other information. Windows Easy Transfer is a free tool to copy files (not programs) from your PC, and then transfer them back after you install Windows 7. If you don't want to use Windows Easy Transfer, you can copy your files to a USB drive, or CD/DVD. Note: Easy Transfer will not work when changing languages, or when going from 64 bit to 32 bit (it will work going from 32 bit to 64 bit).
http://windows.microsoft.com/windows-easy-transfer

3. Locate the installation disks and any associated product/license keys for all your programs because you'll need to manually reinstall all programs. If you downloaded some programs from the Internet you can redownload them.

4. Insert the Windows 7 DVD into your PC. When asked "Which type of installation do you want?" click "Custom (advanced)." Note: 32 to 64 bit requires you to restart and boot from the DVD.
  
5. After Windows 7 is installed you can use Windows Easy Transfer (or another backup method you used) to restore your files & settings, and use your installation disks to reinstall all your programs. Then you're done - enjoy Windows 7.


Have Questions About Installing Windows 7?
FAQ - Common Windows 7 Installation Questions & Answers
MCC 2011

TrekDozer

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