Two options exist for installing Windows 7
If your current version of Windows can be upgraded, choose Upgrade to keep your files, settings, and programs. (If your version of Windows can’t be upgraded, you'll need to choose Custom, which installs a new version of Windows.)
Choose Custom to install Windows on the partition you select. This deletes your programs and settings on that partition. You should back up any files and settings you want to keep so you can restore them after the installation. You must reinstall your programs when the installation is done.
Before you begin!
* Back up your files to an external hard disk, DVD or CD, USB flash drive, or network folder.
* Check the Windows package to make sure your computer meets the system requirements.
* Decide whether to install a 32-bit or 64-bit edition of Windows 7. To run a 64-bit version of Windows, your computer must have a 64-bit-capable processor.
* Find your 25-character Windows product key. You can find your product key on your computer or on the installation disc holder inside the Windows package.
* Write down the name of your computer if you will be connected to a network. If you’re running Windows Vista, here’s how to find your computer’s name: Click Start, right-click Computer, and then click Properties. Your computer's name is displayed under Computer name, domain, and workgroup settings.
* Read “Known issues” located near the end of this document.
* Read the Windows 7 privacy statement online at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=104288.
* Connect to the Internet so you can get the latest installation updates. If you don’t have an Internet connection, you can still upgrade or install Windows.
* Update your antivirus program (if needed), run it, and then disable it. After you install Windows, remember to enable the antivirus program, or install new antivirus software that works with Windows 7.
* Download and run the Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool from http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=125343. This tool checks for infections from specific, malicious software, which might also interfere with an upgrade, and helps remove any infection found. The tool displays a report describing any malicious software removed, and sends a report to Microsoft to help us improve Microsoft products and services. No information in these reports will be used to identify or contact you. For more information, read the Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool privacy statement online at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=113995.
To upgrade to Windows 7
Not all versions of Windows can use the Upgrade option. If your version of Windows can’t be upgraded, you'll need to choose Custom, which installs a new version of Windows.
Note: If you use a fingerprint reader or other biometric device to log on to your computer, make sure you write down your password before upgrading. You must log on by typing your user name and password the first time you use Windows after upgrading.
1. Turn on your computer so Windows starts normally. (To perform an upgrade, you cannot start, or “boot,” your computer from the Windows 7 upgrade disc.)
2. Insert the Windows installation disc into your computer’s DVD or CD drive.
3. To see if your computer can run Windows 7, open Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor by clicking Check compatibility online.
4. On the Install Windows page, click Install now.
5. On the Get important updates for installation page, we recommend getting the latest updates to help ensure a successful installation and to help protect your computer against security threats. You will need an Internet connection to get these updates.
6. On the Please read the license terms page, if you accept the license terms, click I accept the license terms, and then click Next.
7. On the Which type of installation do you want? page, click Upgrade.
8. Follow the instructions. If you see a compatibility report, follow the instructions listed in the report. A copy of the report will be saved to the desktop.
A note about upgrading from Windows XP to Windows 7
You can’t directly upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 7. However, you can use Windows Easy Transfer to keep your files and settings. Then, you can use the Custom option to install Windows 7, and transfer your files and settings back to your computer. For more information about using Windows Easy Transfer to help you move from Windows XP to Windows 7, go online to http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=142337.
To install a Custom (new) version of Windows 7
Use Custom when you want to replace your current operating system entirely; when you want to keep your current operating system and install Windows on an available, separate partition of your hard disk (multiboot); or when no operating system is currently installed.
Custom deletes your programs and settings. Back up any files and settings you want to keep so you can restore them after the installation. You must manually reinstall your programs when the installation is done.
* If you delete or format a partition, all data on the partition is permanently deleted, including files as well as programs and settings.
* If there is an existing version of Windows on the partition you selected and you don’t format or delete the partition, user files are saved to a Windows.old folder on the partition. After the installation completes, you can browse to that folder.
* We still recommend you back up your user files to an external location before performing a custom installation. For example, if you have encrypted files, you might not be able to access them after installing Windows unless you’ve performed a backup. If you’ve backed up your user files and then successfully restored them after installing Windows, you can delete the Windows.old folder using Disk Cleanup.
1. Turn on your computer, insert the Windows installation disc into your computer's DVD or CD drive, and then do one of the following:
* If your computer already has an operating system installed and you don't want to create, extend, delete, or format partitions, go to step 2.
* If your computer doesn’t have an operating system installed, or if you want to create, extend, delete, or format partitions, restart your computer with the installation disc inserted in the DVD or CD drive. This causes your computer to start (or “boot”) from the installation disc. If you are asked to press a key to start from DVD or CD, press any key. If the Install Windows page is displayed, go to step 2.
* If the Install Windows page doesn’t appear and you're not asked to press a key to start from DVD or CD, you might need to set the DVD or CD drive to be the first startup device in the basic input/output system (BIOS). Here's how to do that:
Warning: Be careful when changing BIOS settings. The BIOS interface is designed for advanced users, and it’s possible to change a setting that could prevent your computer from starting correctly.
a. Turn on your computer, insert the Windows installation disc, and then restart your computer.
b. Newer computers usually display a startup (or boot) menu. On the startup menu, select "BIOS setup," or "BIOS settings," or something similar, and then press the appropriate key when prompted to display the BIOS setup screen.
Procedures vary depending on the BIOS manufacturer. Usually, you must press a key (such as F2, F12, Del, Esc) or a key combination immediately after you turn on your computer but before Windows starts. For more information, check the information that came with your computer or go to the computer manufacturer's website.
c. On the BIOS setup screen, select the option called “Boot order,” or something similar.
d. Select your DVD or CD drive as the first startup device, save the setting changes, and then exit the BIOS.
e. Restart your computer, and then start Windows from the installation DVD or CD as previously described.
2. To see if your computer can run Windows 7, open Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor by clicking Check compatibility online. (This option does not appear if you started your computer using the installation DVD or CD.)
3. On the Install Windows page, follow the instructions that appear, and then click Install now.
4. On the Get important updates for installation page, we recommend getting the latest updates to help ensure a successful installation and to help protect your computer against security threats. You will need an Internet connection to get these updates. (Note: This page will not appear if you start Windows from the installation disc.)
5. On the Please read the license terms page, if you accept the license terms, click I accept the license terms, and then click Next.
6. On the Which type of installation do you want? page, click Custom.
7. On the Where do you want to install Windows? page, do one of the following:
* If you want to accept the partition that Windows chooses, and you don't want to install Windows on a specific partition or create partitions on your hard disk, click Next to begin the installation.
* If you want to install Windows on a specific partition with enough free space, select the partition you want to use, and then click Next to begin the installation. (If you want to keep your existing version of Windows and create a multiboot configuration, be sure to install Windows on a different partition from the one where your current version of Windows is installed.)
8. If you want to create, extend, delete, or format a partition (and you started Windows from the installation disc), click Drive options (advanced), click the option you want, and then follow the instructions. Continue to follow the instructions.
Important: Be sure to install new antivirus software after the installation is complete.
If you are upgrading from Windows Vista, changes made to default Windows tasks, services, and other system settings in Windows Vista might be overwritten with the default configuration for Windows 7.
Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor
To see if your PC is ready for Windows 7, download the free Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor. It scans your PC for potential issues with your hardware, devices, and installed programs, and recommends what to do before you upgrade.
If your PC can run Windows Vista, it can probably run Windows 7, but it's still a good idea to download and run the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor before you begin the upgrade process.
Note: Information about your PC will be sent to Microsoft, but no information will be used to identify or contact you. For more information, read the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor privacy statement.