Upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1 using the image I purchased and downloaded from Microsoft

babyb00mer used Ask the Experts™
About a year ago I purchased and downloaded Windows 8.1. Also, I burned that image to disc. So far, I've only used it to create a virtual machine. I'm wondering whether I can use that image to upgrade the host machine, which is running Windows 7. I've made one attempt to use that disc to upgrade Windows 7, but bailed out when I got to the install button without ever having been given a choice between a full install and an upgrade. Am I chickening out too soon, or is my fear that my system is about to be clobbered, justified? Can I use the 8.1 disc that I created to upgrade my Windows 7 system?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018
It appears from your description that you want to use the same license from the virtual machine to upgrade the host machine. You will run into licensing conflicts.

Consider upgrading the Windows 7 host machine to Windows 10 (free) with the Media Creation Link.


Back up first in case you need to do a fresh install - Windows 7 is very old now.
Most Valuable Expert 2015
As mentioned above, you will first have to decommission the VM of windows 8.1. After that you could just install Windows 8.1. But you'd have to call the m$ registration number to get it activated.

Personally I can't see any logic behind installing Windows 8.1. That was an unusable OS compared to either Windows 7 and Windows 10, so I'd also rather upgrade to Windows 10 directly for free.

The only case in which I could imagine a reason behind installing Windows 8.1 would be if you are now using a home version of Windows 7, and your Windows 8.1 is either Professional or Ultimate. Then you should install Windows 8.1 and then upgrade that OS to Windows 10, which will then be Professional version too.
Thanks a lot guys! Eventually, I performed a clean install of Windows 10 on the host system. It was not my preference, but nothing else has worked. I will reinstall my applications as I need them.

Experts Exchange has made the process of rewarding the contributors more and more confusing. Both responses were informative and instrumental in influencing my decision.


I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 0 points for babyb00mer's comment #a41515527
Assisted answer: 250 points for thinkpads_user's comment #a41514625
Assisted answer: 250 points for rindi's comment #a41514652

for the following reason:

Please refer to my last comment.

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