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Clean Install compared to "Keep Nothing" option.

Posted on 2016-07-23
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Last Modified: 2016-07-28
I upgraded a Windows 7 PC* (which had no programs installed) to Windows 10.
I used a DVD and the "Keep Nothing" option.

Everything is working fine.
It there any advantage to be had in formatting and doing a clean install?
Will I need to download  drivers?

* AMD FX 4170 Quad Core + GeForce GTX 560 Ti
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Question by:Eirman
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 41725627
I'm doing this with what I consider to be a healthy bit of paranoia, clean upgrade then wipe and reinstall using the same Win 10 image used for the upgrade.  There have been a couple of machines I've done this with that needed drivers that weren't covered by Win 10's generic ones the reinstall picked up but pretty much everything else worked fine and the hardware upgraded once I got online (Wifi &/or NIC driver checking is a must for older machines).  So my view is if these are in small numbers yes clean reinstall afterwards check everything connects.  In practical, objective terms though probably no big advantage if you're not keeping anything other than you need to dump windows.old at some point.

Just my $0.02 (now approx €0.02!)
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by:rindi
rindi earned 125 total points
ID: 41725751
Possibly the "not keep anything" still allows you to rollback to the old OS. It probably saves the previous OS in a Windows.old directory. I haven't verified this but I think that is the case, as if the upgrade fails the system will automatically rollback after a reboot.

A clean install doesn't keep the old OS. So that should be the difference.

If you don't want to keep anything, then why even do the upgrade in the first place? You can do a clean installation from the beginning. You just need to provide the product key of Windows 7 during the installation, and if it is valid and once you have an Internet connection it will automatically get activated and registered with the m$ servers. You only need to run the upgrade once if you don't know the product key of Windows 7.
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by:Eirman
ID: 41725755
I tried the clean install + win7 key method and it would not work (it did not accept the key).
I had used jellybean and some other tool to verify my win7 key.
I checked my key was genuine on the miicrosoft ws

I spent 20 minutes on the phone to Microsoft and they said that the above method does not work.
I insisted is should .....
 .... they checked again and reiterated that the above method does not work.
The upgrade/keep nothing worked flawlessly.
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 41725764
Were you using the latest .iso of Win 10?  Which version (ProductID) did your keychecker get verified as?
Generic OEM keys from royalty manufacturers, whilst valid, can't be used to activate but are the codes that keycheckers retrieve.
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by:rindi
ID: 41725780
You'd have had to use the key on your product key sticker on the PC, not the one jellybeans finds. Also, you must install the matching version of Windows 10. If your Windows 7 was home premium, you can't install Windows 10 Pro.
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by:Eirman
ID: 41725784
It was .....
Product Name: Windows 7 Ultimate
Product ID: 00426-OEM-8992662-00006
Installed Key: FJGCP-4DFJD-GJY49-*****-*****

There was no sticker on the PC
I used the very latest ISO

I didn't know about the jellybean/sticker issue.

It doesn't matter now - I won't be doing any more free upgrades.
There appears to be no compelling reason to do a clean install, so I'll probably leave things as they are.
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☠ MASQ ☠ earned 250 total points
ID: 41725788
That's an Acer OEM key that's been leaked into the wild
FJGCP-4DFJD-GJY49-VJB*7-HY**2 is on Microsoft's blacklist :(
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by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 125 total points
ID: 41725798
Format and fresh install removes user profiles and accounts. Also you cannot roll back as Rindi notes. Keep nothing keeps user accounts and so may not correct a profile error.

Keep Nothing usually works and I have done that several times.
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Author Comment

by:Eirman
ID: 41725803
That's an Acer OEM key that's been leaked into the wild
Interesting MASQ - thanks. So much for online validation!

 At least I'm genuinely licensed now with win8
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by:rindi
ID: 41725812
Did you install Windows 8 or was that the original OS the PC came with?

If the PC originally had Windows 8 on it, and it was downgraded to Windows 7, then the 8 product key would be embedded in the BIOS. Such PC's can be clean installed with Windows 10 and the OS gets automatically registered and activated.
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by:Eirman
ID: 41725825
I bought it second hand about 15 months ago.
I came with Win7 (It never had w8)
I Never had any activation or updates issues.
Every validation tool / website indicated that I had a genuine ms key
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Author Closing Comment

by:Eirman
ID: 41733280
Thanks to everyone.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 41733806
You are very welcome
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