How do I migrate from Windows Vista to Windows 7 Ultimate?
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These instructions presume you are at Indiana University, installing Windows 7 Ultimate from the DVD available through the IU/Microsoft Campus Agreement. If you are not an IU user or you are installing Windows 7 from a different source, you may have to make small adjustments to the directions below.
Warning: Following these steps will permanently delete all data and program files from your computer. Before proceeding, back up all data files, and locate the installation media for your software.
- Doing an upgrade installation will work from any version of
Vista (except Starter or Enterprise). However,
UITS recommends doing a clean install to avoid potential
software problems. If you do perform a true upgrade, you may need to
uninstall Symantec antivirus software first; see After upgrading to Windows 7 or Vista, why has my antivirus client stopped working?
For the installation to work, you must have an existing version of Windows already installed on your computer's hard drive. If you do not, or if you format the hard drive before using the Windows 7 DVD, your product key will not work.
For security reasons, you should install Windows or rebuild your Windows computer offline (i.e., unplug your network cable), and then take certain measures to assure its security before putting it back on the network. For instructions, see In Windows, how do I safely rebuild my computer?
By the terms of the IU/Microsoft Campus Agreement, each license key is capable of installing Windows 7 on only one computer. If you need to purchase a second copy, contact your campus Support Center for help.
Note: If you are an IU student, faculty member, or staff member, the fee-based Carry-in Consulting service at IUB is available to install the operating system for you. See IUB Carry-in Consulting services and pricing.
To perform a clean install of Windows 7 Ultimate:
- Insert the Windows 7 Ultimate DVD in your primary DVD drive.
- Reboot your computer. You should see a message that says, "Press
any key to boot from CD or DVD...". If you see this message, press
any key. If Windows starts normally, refer to On a PC, how do I boot from something other than the hard drive?
- Select your language, time and currency, and keyboard preferences
from the drop-down menus, and then click
- Check the box to accept the license agreement, and then click
- Select the
Custom (advanced)installation option.
Warning: The following step deletes all the data on your hard drive. Make sure you've backed up important files and have the installation disks for your software.
On the next screen, you should see a list of the partitions defined on your hard drive(s). If you have more than one physical hard drive in the computer, they will be displayed here as separate disks (
Disk 1, etc.). Only follow these instructions for the disk that contains your existing Windows installation, and leave any others alone. If you are unsure which disk contains your Windows installation, ask for assistance before continuing.
To proceed, click
Drive options (advanced)to access the options, and then, one by one, select each partition on the desired disk and click
Delete. You will be prompted to confirm each deletion. After deleting all partitions, you should see only "Unallocated Space". Select
Unallocated Space, and then click
Nextto continue the installation.
Note: Windows 7 will create a new partition and start expanding and installing files to your hard drive. This process will take several minutes, during which your computer will restart multiple times. Your computer will need to reboot from the hard drive during this process. When you see "Press any key to boot from CD or DVD... ", do not press a key; allow the computer to boot from the hard drive.
- After Windows 7 has finished installing, you'll be prompted to
create a user account, computer name, and password. This account is an
administrator account, and for security purposes should not
be the account you will generally use. Keep this in mind as you choose
a username. See About your device's administrator account.
Enter a name for your computer in the box provided. This is the name that will appear on networks to which you connect, including the IU network. Select a desktop background if you wish. Click
- Enter and confirm a password in the boxes provided. Enter a password
hint, and choose a picture if you wish. Click
- Enter your product key; this is the 25-character code on the back
of the DVD sleeve. Keep the box checked to automatically activate
Use recommended settings.
- Select your time zone from the drop-down list, and then adjust the
time and date as needed.
Note: In most of Indiana, the correct setting is
(GMT-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada), not the
- If prompted to select your computer's current location, choose the
one that is best for your purposes. If you are unsure, select
- If prompted to configure your wireless connection or to create a
home group, you can skip these tasks for now.
Startto launch Windows 7.
For security reasons and to increase performance, follow the steps in What should I do immediately after installing Windows 7?
Last modified on February 19, 2013.