Replace Windows 10 with Window 7

I recently purchased, received, and setup a Thinkpad X1 Carbon 6th Generation from Lenovo. The laption came pre-loaded with Windows 10 Pro. I have discovered that certain software that I run and VPN connections that I need to have active, are not compatible with Windows 10. I therefore need to replace Windows 10 with Windows 7 Pro. Other than getting the Win 7 Pro installation media, I am not quite sure how to proceed with the install. My guess - which may well be wrong - is that I turn the X1 off, connect an external DVD drive containing the Win 7 Pro install media to it, and force it to boot from there. After that, I'm not sure if I just follow the prompts.

Any help or suggestions would be very much appreciated.
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVEDeveloperCommented:
There's a very active thread going on right now about this same issue:

Although it is about a different computer (a Dell laptop), there are likely some comments there that will prove helpful for your Lenovo laptop. Regards, Joe

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
Your DVD drive solution will be fine, make sure you plug it into the left-hand USB on the X1C as the Win7 installer won’t include the USB 3 support natively for the right-hand port.
Andrew LeniartEE Senior Editor & Independent IT ConsultantCommented:
Before going ahead with this, you may want to check that there are Windows 7 drivers available for the Laptop you've purchased cbridgman, otherwise you could cause yourself a world of grief. Just a suggestion :)

I hope that's helpful.

Regards, Andrew
IT Pros Agree: AI and Machine Learning Key

We’d all like to think our company’s data is well protected, but when you ask IT professionals they admit the data probably is not as safe as it could be.

cbridgmanAuthor Commented:
Thanks everyone for your suggestions and comments. I am going to get this process started later today and let you know how it goes.

Andrew, how would I go about finding out if there are Win 7 drivers available for the laptop? Other than a google search, is there some other way I can find out?
Andrew LeniartEE Senior Editor & Independent IT ConsultantCommented:
☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
Ahh, just noticed that the 6th gen only has USB 3.1 now
You may need a little prep time with the Win 7 install media to add the drivers.
Describes how using a pre-built utility.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
You can only try to downgrade. Chances are (90% plus) that the computer will not run Windows 7 at all.

VPN: Use NCP Secure Entry - works fine in Windows 10 (
Other software: upgrade it.

Everything I need and use (much more software than most folk) works fine in Windows 10.

Just adapt, move forward and you should be fine.
cbridgmanAuthor Commented:
Hi John, that's the impression that I am getting from what I have been reading. I don't think that Win 7 will run on this new laptop. The biggest problem that I have is that my clients are all running older software. I connect to their networks with VPN clients such as SonicWall NetExtender, Cisco AnyConnect Secure Mobility Client, and a few others. I've tried installing those on the Win 10 box but haven't had any success. They work like on charm on my Win 7 PC but I either can't install them on the Win 10 box (install fails) or when I attempt a connection, the connection fails.

I actually downloaded NCP Secure Entry Client but don't have a clue as to how to set it up. If I were able to get connected with that, I'd be willing to stay with Win 10. So far, all attempts at that have failed.

Any ideas?
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
For the other VPN, I have seen those issues here.

For NCP, here is a sample Setup. NCP Support will also assist you.  You need to match the settings with your VPN box that you are connecting to.

Basic Settings:
Profile Name
Check VPN Connection to IPSec Gateway
Connection Medium <- Automatic
Uncheck Default Profile after Reboot

Line Management:
Connection Mode <- Manual
Inactivity Timeout <- 6000
Voip <- uncheck
ISDN section <- N/A
Pre-Authentication <- both unchecked

IPSec General Settings:
Gateway (Tunnel Endpoint) <- Remote site External IP (
IKE Policy <- PSK-DES-SHA-DH2  (Phase 1 set in the Policy Editor and must match your Netscreen)
IPSec Policy <- ESP-DES-SHA (Phase 2 set in Policy Editor and must match your Netscreen)
Exch Mode <- Aggressive
PFS Group <- None

Advanced IPSec:
IPSec Compression <- unchecked
Disable Dead Peer Detection <- unchecked
Standard IPSec <- Checked
UDP Encapsulation <- unchecked
VPN Path Finder <- unchecked

Type <- Fully Qualified Username (what I use)
ID <- (I use email address for FQ username; it does not have to be real)
Pre-Shared Key <- Fill in twice (as demanded by Phase 1 setting)
Certificate <- None (I do not use these)
XAUTH <- Unchecked (my setup)

IPSec Address Assignment:
Assign Private IP Address <- Local IP Address (
DNS / WINS Server <- Uncheck (in my setup)

Split Tunneling:
Remote Network IP ( Remote Network Mask ( <- This is the remote end addressing

Certificate Check:
Not used

Link Firewall:
Not Used
Shaun VermaakTechnical Specialist IVCommented:
certain software that I run and VPN connections
Please provide a list. Much more productive to get these sorted instead of downgrading Windows
cbridgmanAuthor Commented:
I think I may have this sorted out. I was able to connect Cisco AnyConnect and SonicWall Mobile Connect running. So, progress is being made. Keeping my fingers crossed. Another problem I'm facing is that some of the apps that I run only run in IE 8 and need JRE 1.7. I may be able to deal with those requirements by setting up a VM that runs Win 7. I will keep plugging and let everyone know.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
IE 8 does not run in Windows 10 so yes , you can consider VM . I do this
Shaun VermaakTechnical Specialist IVCommented:
IE11 etc. can run as IE8
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows 10

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.