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Windows 7/RE: upgrading to Windows 7


Hello Mike,

I have a 8 year old computer that runs on Windows Vista.

My brother wants to install Windows 7 because it'll be compatible with the latest income tax software. My question is: if we upgrade to windows 7, wouldn't we have to back up our important files because the new Windows software will wipe out whatever programs we have on our current system?

Thank you for reading. I look forward to your reply.


Hello Stephen

If you have a windows 7 disk laying around then yes, go ahead and plug it in but do so while you have vista up and running. This way you will be able to choose the 'upgrade' option whereas if you were to boot to the cd directly then it would detect an existing windows and place it as 'windowsold' folder and all of your programs would then have to be reinstalled. With the upgrade option which would be available since Windows 7 came out right after Vista, then it will simply replace the operating system with windows 7, keeping all other programs. Just be sure to choose UPGRADE option if prompted.

One thing I suggest however, once you have upgraded to windows 7, is to go the next step and get the FREE windows 10 upgrade. Since your system originally was bought with Vista, there is no doubt that it will be capable of handling windows 10. In fact Windows 10 is a much more streamlined operating system than windows 7 and your computer will not only appear to be more efficient but you will have the latest (and last) operating system Microsoft intends on making so your old computer is completely up to date. The free upgrade is only available on windows 7,8,8.1 machines so you will first have to perform the upgrade to windows 7.  So long as you do the windows 10 upgrade before the end  of June, you will be entitled to the free upgrade. After that, you would have to pay over $100 to upgrade which is probably not worth it on an old machine so take advantage of this.


Mike Dacre
follow me on twitter @tpsconsulting

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Mike Dacre


As I have been volunteering in the 'windows' category since the inception of AllExperts, which has now moved to numerous windows categories. I will therefore be happy to answer any Windows 7,8 and 10 based question. What can't I answer? Not much, as this is the main reason I volunteered here, because I am hopeful the questions I can not answer will allow me to investigate the problem so that I can answer it. The TIPS and SOFTWARE support through my website at can also be of some help.


I have owned my own computer consulting business for the past 17 years and since the very beginning I have volunteered with AllExperts in the hopes I would be able to learn from others mistakes and problems. The goal for me is to be able to research any problem I don't initially have the answer to, in the hopes I will be able to further benefit for my own clients when they come across a similar problem.

More information can be found at my website


I grew up with computers, from the first Apple IIC, back when Bill Gates was a student himself! For the past 17 years I have been providing technical services from building computers to constructing complete control rooms. Working with CTV I have helped produce the 1994 Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway. Later, designing and construction of "instant replay control rooms' for the Big Screens found in Stadiums and Coliseums.

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