Windows 7 can be purchased in various editions like Windows 7 Home Premium or Windows 7 Ultimate. Next to these editions are also different versions of the operating system like oem, full retail and upgrade. If you purchase a Windows 7 Upgrade you are only allowed to upgrade if you own a previous version of a Windows operating system. But what if you want to perform a clean install on a new computer system? The installation using the Windows 7 Upgrade DVD would work fine but it would not be possible to activate the operating system.
Paul Thurott discovered a way to perform a clean install of Windows 7 using Windows 7 Upgrade media and to activate it with just a simple tweak which can be applied in the running operating system.
According to Paul all that needs to be done after performing the initial clean installation of Windows 7 is the following:
After performing the clean install, ensure that there are no Windows Updates pending that would require a system reboot. (You'll see an orange shield icon next to Shutdown in the Start Menu if this is the case).
Then, open regedit.exe with Start Menu Search and navigate to:
Change MediaBootInstall from "1" to "0".
Open the Start Menu again and type cmd to display a shortcut to the Command Line utility. Right-click this shortcut and choose "Run as administrator." Handle the UAC prompt.
In the command line window, type: slmgr /rearm
Then tap ENTER, close the command line window and reboot. When Windows 7 reboots, run the Activate Windows utility, type in your product key and activate windows. It should just work.
There you have it. An easy way to do a clean install of Windows 7 using an upgrade DVD. This is obviously only legal if you own a previous Microsoft operating system that's supported by the Windows 7 Update program.Advertisement
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.