How to Upgrade from Windows XP to Windows 7
As you may have heard, you will not be able to directly upgrade your Windows XP computer to Windows 7. For those of us who prefer to wipe out the older version and always perform a clean install of the new operating system, this may not be a big deal. However, for a lot of organizations, and even individuals, a clean install requires re-installation of all the applications and a lot of additional work to get the computer back to the original state with all the custom configuration settings and tweaks.
Here are the steps that Microsoft has documented on TechNet that demonstrates how you can use Windows Easy Transfer to migrate files and settings from Windows XP to Windows 7.
Upgrading from Wind0ws XP to Windows 7
The Upgrade option is not available in Windows 7 Setup when installing Windows 7 on a computer running Windows XP. However, you can use Windows Easy Transfer to migrate files and settings from Windows XP to Windows 7 on the same computer. To do this, you must first copy files to a removable media, such as an external hard drive or UFD, or to a network share. Next, you will install Windows 7 and then migrate your files back from the removable media onto your computer. When you are finished, you must install your software programs again, but your files and settings will have been copied from Windows XP.
Copy files using Windows Easy Transfer
- Insert the Windows 7 DVD while running Windows XP. If the Windows 7 installation window opens automatically, close it.
- Open Windows Explorer by right-clicking the Start menu, and then clicking Explore.
- Browse to the DVD drive on your computer and click migsetup.exe in the Support\Migwiz directory.The Windows Easy Transfer window opens.
- Click Next.
- Select An external hard disk or USB flash drive.
- Click This is my old computer. Windows Easy Transfer scans the computer.
- Click Next. You can also determine which files should be migrated by selecting only the user profiles you want to transfer, or by clicking Customize.
- Enter a password to protect your Easy Transfer file, or leave the box blank, and then click Save.
- Browse to the external location on the network or to the removable media where you want to save your Easy Transfer file, and then click Save.
- Click Next. Windows Easy Transfer displays the file name and location of the Easy Transfer file you just created.
Use the Windows 7 DVD to upgrade
- Start Windows 7 Setup by browsing to the root folder of the DVD in Windows Explorer, and then double clicking setup.exe.
- Click Go online to get the latest updates (recommended) to retrieve any important updates for Windows 7. This step is optional. If you choose not to check for updates during Setup, click Do not get the latest updates.
- Read and accept the Microsoft Software License Terms. Click I accept the License Terms (required to use Windows), and then click Next. If you click I decline (cancel installation), Windows 7 Setup will exit.
- Click Custom to perform an upgrade to your existing Windows installation.
- Select the partition where you would like to install Windows. To move your existing Windows installation into a Windows.old folder and replace the operating system with Windows 7, select the partition where your current Windows installation is located.
- Click Next and then click OK.Windows 7 Setup will proceed without further interaction.
Copy files to the destination computer
- If you saved your files and settings in an Easy Transfer file on a removable media such as a UFD rather than on a network share, insert the removable media into the computer.
- Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click System Tools, and then click Windows Easy Transfer.The Windows Easy Transfer window opens.
- Click Next.
- Click An external hard disk or USB flash drive.
- Click This is my new computer.
- Click Yes, open the file.
- Browse to the location where the Easy Transfer file was saved. Click the file name, and then click Open.
- Click Transfer to transfer all files and settings. You can also determine which files should be migrated by selecting only the user profiles you want to transfer, or by clicking Customize.
- Click Close after Windows Easy Transfer has completed moving your files.
Delete Windows.old directory
To reclaim the disk space, you can delete the Windows.old directory using the Disk Cleanup system tool by following these steps:
- Open Disk Cleanup. Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click System Tools, and then click Disk Cleanup.
- Click Clean up system files.Previous installations of Windows are scanned.
- Select Previous Windows installation(s) and any other categories of files you want to delete.
- Click OK and then click Delete Files.