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Messerschmitt

How to reserve windows 10

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Hey gang. Looking to reserve windows 10 but without actually installing it and using it. I want to keep using windows 7 until all the new games aren't working anymore and windows 7 is fully no longer supported with any security patches (aka like windows xp last year).

But like I said, I do want to have that free upgrade when that time comes. Now from my knowledge, in order to reserve windows 10 and have it available when I want to next upgrade, I need to use my win 7 keys while installing windows 10?

So could I use my backup laptop to format, install windows 7 with CD-key, then upgrade to windows 10, then format it again (so I keep using windows 7 with my CD-key on my main desktop computer).

Or can I just install windows 10 directly using my windows 7 CD-key, then wipe it out so again, I can use windows 7 on my main computer? For this, is there an .iso file I can download (someone provided me both x86 and x64 .iso files when I asked for them on microsoft answers I believe the site was).

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mb u can backup to and restore it to another partition and from there do the upgrading

and back to windows 7 at the main partition

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You don't even need to format your Windows 7 installation to do that. You just need a drive (or external drive/usb key with 16GB or more space) or, if you don't have any drive, a VHD.

First, you need to download Windows 10 iso which correspond to your Windows 7 edition (10 Home for 7 Starter, Home Basic and Home Premium or 10 Pro for 7 Pro and Ultimate). You can get them with the Microsoft Media Creation tool.
Download VMware Player or VirtualBox and install one of them on your Windows 7. Create a new virtual machine and, when it asks you to create a virtual disk, select physical drive and select your other drive which will contain Windows 10.
Install the right Windows 10 edition on the virtual machine. Don't inser your Windows 7 key in the virtual machine, when it asks for the key, select I don't have a product key and continue.
When Windows is installed in your vm, power it off and shutdown your pc. Now you have to boot on the Windows 10 drive, let it recognize your hardware. When you see the Windows 10 desktop, go to Settings, Update and Recovery, Activation and click on Change product key. Enter your Windows 7 product key and activate Windows.
Now your pc have the digital entitlement (or digital licence).

Now boot the same Windows 10 disk on all your computer which have the right edition of 7 and activate them with their Windows 7 keys and all your PCs will have a digital entitlement so you will be able to install 10 when you want in the futur.

PS : You can download the build 14393 of Windows 10 which is the build that will be distribute Aug 2nd as the Anniversary Update. If you do all those steps with this build, you can, in addition, link the activation to your Microsoft account which will allow you to reactivate Windows 10 if you have a problem with it without having to call Microsoft for that ;)

Edited by MTDirector

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1 hour ago, MTDirector said:

When Windows is installed in your vm, power it off and shutdown your pc. Now you have to boot on the Windows 10 drive, let it recognize your hardware.

I don't quiet understand. Is it a "boot from a VHD" kind of thing and if yes how exactly you can do it?

Quote

select physical drive and select your other drive which will contain Windows 10

I noticed it afterwards. You mean installing Windows 10 to a real drive and not a VHD within e.g. Virtual Box? Can you do it with a partition and will Windows 10 be restrained into that partition (and not delete other partitions - Windows 7/8, recovery etc.)?

Edited by HarryTri

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1 hour ago, HarryTri said:

I don't quiet understand. Is it a "boot from a VHD" kind of thing and if yes how exactly you can do it?

I have described only the case when you have a physical drive. For the VHD, you need a VHD disk created by Windows, use it in the virtual machine and add it to the BCD, at boot you will have the choice between Windows 10 and your Windows ;) 

If you want I will explaine with more details this tomorrow (it's night here).

1 hour ago, HarryTri said:

I noticed it afterwards. You mean installing Windows 10 to a real drive and not a VHD within e.g. Virtual Box? Can you do it with a partition and will Windows 10 be restrained into that partition (and not delete other partitions - Windows 7/8, recovery etc.)?

With VMware you can use only one partition of your disk, I haven't already tried this before but I can also try explain this.


I will explain all of this with screenshot because I have tried and it works (I have do this on my laptop to see if it can works) ;)

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How to get a Windows 10 license without upgrading your PC

First, download Windows 10 iso from the Media Creation tool or find the build 14393 aka Windows 10 RS1.

There is two solutions: use a physical drive (internal or external) -all parts with "a"- or use a virtual disk (VHD) -all parts with "b"-. You can't use just one partition of a physical hard disk for this since we will be using a virtual machine, it will not work but, since you can natively create VHD on Windows 7 and up it's not a problem.

You need VMware Player (free) or VirtualBox for the virtual machine part. I'm personally using VMware but it should work the same in VirtualBox.

1a - Use a physical drive:

Connect a new disk on your PC. Don’t initialize it or formatting it, we will let Windows doing that.

Create a new virtual machine, select Windows 10 as os. VMware will asks you if you want a BIOS or UEFI, chose in function of your motherboard: if it has a BIOS, select BIOS or UEFI if it has a UEFI.

When it asks for creating a virtual disk, select SATA as interface and select Use Physical drive and select your disk in the list (the disk number can be known through the disk management).

Spoiler

4116121a2.jpg

1b - Use a virtual disk:

Open disk management (diskmgmt.msc) and click on Action, Create a new virtual disk. Choose VHD (on Windows 8 only because you can choose between VHD and VHDX, Windows 7 only support VHD), Fixed size and set it to 20 GB. Save it where you want on your computer.

Do not forget to unmount the VHD from the disk management before installing it on virtual machine!

Create a new virtual machine, select Windows 10 as OS. VMware will asks you if you want a BIOS or UEFI, chose in function of your motherboard: if it has a BIOS, select BIOS or UEFI if it has a UEFI.

When it asks for creating a virtual disk, select SATA as interface and select Use an existing disk and then select your VHD.

Spoiler

5115511b0.jpg     6638821b2.jpg

2 - Installing Windows 10:

Now, install Windows 10 in the virtual machine. When it asks for a key, don't put your Windows key, select I don't have a product key and chose the right edition of Windows: If you have Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic and Home Premium or Windows 8.x Core, select Windows 10 Home, if you have Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate or Windows 8.x Pro select Windows 10 Pro (Enterprise edition isn't eligible). Install Windows normally. When Windows is installed, don't install VMware Tools or VirtualBox Guest additions, shutdown the virtual machine.

3a - Boot from your physical drive:

Now reboot your PC. Hit the right key to show the boot order of your BIOS/UEFI, it's often ESC, F9 or F11, refer to your motherboard manual to know which key you need to press to have it. In the list, select your Windows 10 disk and hit Enter.

3b - Boot from your VHD:

Now we will add the Windows 10 VHD into the Windows Boot Manager. Open a command prompt as Administrator and type the following lines:

Bcdedit /copy {current} /d "Windows 10"

bcdedit /set {guid} device vhd=[X:]\vhd_path\windows10.vhd

bcdedit /set {guid} osdevice vhd=[X:]\vhd_path\windows10.vhd

guid is the new guid that the first command will show.
X is the letter of the drive or partition you have chosen to store your VHD.
vhd_path is where it's stored in your disk.

Now reboot your PC, at boot you will have the choice between your current os and Windows 10.

Spoiler

4737263b1.jpg

4 - Get a digital license on your computer:

Now, let Windows 10 recognize your hardware and when you see the desktop, go into the Settings app, Update & Recovery, Activation. Here click on Change Product key and insert your Windows 7/8 key. Windows will activate itself.
If you have the build 14393, I highly recommend to you to link the activation to your Microsoft Account, it will be your only solution if you have a problem with your activation and wanting to activate again without having to call MS support.

If you have multiple computers, repeat steps 3 and 4 on every of your computers to get a Windows 10 license.

- OPTIONAL

If you have choose the VHD part and wanting to delete Windows 10, reboot your current os and delete the VHD entry with the following command:

Bcdedit /delete {guid}

Guid is the same guid you obtained in part 3b.

Now, delete the vhd from your disk.

Edited by MTDirector
  • Upvote 1

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Thanks for the tutorial, I may consider trying it.:)

(Not that I'm going to stick with Windows 10 anyway, also I don't like the linking to my Microsoft account part, I prefer Microsoft not to know this link).

Edited by HarryTri

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Thanks MTDirector. I'm personally planning to use my spare laptop to install windows 10 on it and register my windows 7 serial keys for future use. Do I need to choose NOT to put in my key when Windows 10 finishes installing? Should I shut it down, restart, and then input the serial key as per your tutorial? Or since I'm installing this directly on my spare laptop I can just input the serial key? The serial key shouldn't be registered to the hardware so it shouldn't make any difference.

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8 hours ago, Messerschmitt said:

Thanks MTDirector. I'm personally planning to use my spare laptop to install windows 10 on it and register my windows 7 serial keys for future use. Do I need to choose NOT to put in my key when Windows 10 finishes installing? Should I shut it down, restart, and then input the serial key as per your tutorial? Or since I'm installing this directly on my spare laptop I can just input the serial key? The serial key shouldn't be registered to the hardware so it shouldn't make any difference.

No, with Windows 10 the digital license is registred with your hardware, you need to activate Windows 10 on the computer you want to have the Windows 10 license ! If you have a Retail key, you will have a Windows 10 license like OEM wich is hardware dependent !

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My keys are from MSAA or whatever it's called through school.

I have used the key through a few hardware. It says it reached it's limit but then I use the phone system and register it again.

Do they have it in their TOS that I am obligated to buy a new copy of windows everytime I upgrade my computer? Can't I just use the telephone system for Windows 10 as well when I register my Win 7 key?

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3 hours ago, Messerschmitt said:

My keys are from MSAA or whatever it's called through school.

I have used the key through a few hardware. It says it reached it's limit but then I use the phone system and register it again.

Do they have it in their TOS that I am obligated to buy a new copy of windows everytime I upgrade my computer? Can't I just use the telephone system for Windows 10 as well when I register my Win 7 key?

You can but the Windows 10 license is like OEM so if they don't want to reactivate your Windows 10 you will have to buy a full license. It was like that since july 215 : when you upgrade to Windows 10 you receve a digital license for the life of your device so if you change your motherboard it's another pc for them and you have to buy a new key (an OEM or a full Retail box which you can reinstall to a new computer if you want).

So you have to considere that the free upgarde = Windows 10 OEM license and not a full retail product !

Edited by MTDirector

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7 hours ago, MTDirector said:

You can but the Windows 10 license is like OEM so if they don't want to reactivate your Windows 10 you will have to buy a full license. It was like that since july 215 : when you upgrade to Windows 10 you receve a digital license for the life of your device so if you change your motherboard it's another pc for them and you have to buy a new key (an OEM or a full Retail box which you can reinstall to a new computer if you want).

So you have to considere that the free upgarde = Windows 10 OEM license and not a full retail product !

So are OEM licences and retail licences the same, as in you can reinstall them on new hardware? Or you mean only retail licences, and OEM it's usually only for the 1 hardware?

Unfortunately my motherboard is quite old, 2013, a ASUS Z87-A.

I guess I will have to do as you said and try the virtual machine. Now I do have Oracle VM VirtualBox installed, but I have a feeling the VirtualBox is the kind that you can actually boot the entire computer from it? (rather than the VirtualBox that opens an instance in windows and uses emulated hardware)

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9 hours ago, Messerschmitt said:

So are OEM licences and retail licences the same, as in you can reinstall them on new hardware? Or you mean only retail licences, and OEM it's usually only for the 1 hardware?

Unfortunately my motherboard is quite old, 2013, a ASUS Z87-A.

I guess I will have to do as you said and try the virtual machine. Now I do have Oracle VM VirtualBox installed, but I have a feeling the VirtualBox is the kind that you can actually boot the entire computer from it? (rather than the VirtualBox that opens an instance in windows and uses emulated hardware)

OEM and Retail aren't the same, OEM = 1 motherboard, if you chage it you will have to buy a new license for the new motherboard. With Retail license, you can transfert your license to a new motherboard but you can't use the same license on multiple motherboard at the same time.

VirtualBox (and other virtualization tools) emulate an entire computer for the virtual machine. If you activate your Windows 7 license on Windows 10 under the vm your activation will be for the vm only since its hardware id is different from your host computer. If you want to reserve 10, you will have to boot it at least one time on your physical computer and activate it with your Windows 7 license and if you change your motherboard you will loose your Windows 10 license (like an OEM license).

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Any way to confirm the key is registered to windows 10?

I ended just using a spare hdd and formatting that and installing windows on that.  Since I had that there was no reason to screw around with virtual machines

Edit: darn apparently I can't register 2 keys on the same computer.  Somehow it knew I registered it on that mobo, so the new copy was already activated

Edited by Messerschmitt

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