Descend from Windows 8 to Windows 7

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If you are looking for a way to downgrade Windows 8 to Windows 7, this post may enlighten you. This article covers the recovery of a previous Windows installation – Windows 7 or Windows Vista – on a computer currently running Windows 8, as well as downgrade rights offered by Microsoft.

Download Windows 8 to Windows 7

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Not all products include downgrade rights. But Microsoft has listed lower upgrade rights for Windows 8 that allow users to upgrade from Windows 8 Pro to Windows 7 Professional or Windows Vista Business until they are ready to upgrade to the new version. The following OEM versions of Windows software are eligible for downgrade rights.

There are no downgrade rights for retail versions of Windows 8. If you upgraded to Windows 8 with a commercial version of Windows 8, you must reinstall Windows 7 using the recovery or installation media.

If you are using a Windows 8 OEM, downgrade rights only apply to Windows 8 Pro and you can upgrade to Windows 7 Pro or Windows Vista Business.

Volume Licensing, however, allows you to switch to Windows 7 Pro, Windows Vista Business, Windows XP Pro, Windows 2000 Pro and even Windows 95/98/NT.

According to Microsoft, the points to be taken into account when downgrading Windows 8 Pro or Windows 7:

    • Buy a PC with Windows software preinstalled.
    • Accept the End User Software License Agreement.
    • Carry out the decommissioning or authorize a third party to do so on its behalf.
    • You need a licensed version of Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Ultimate. The version must be legally obtained from the OEM partner or the trade.
    • Users licensed separately by Microsoft Volume Licensing (VL) may make their VL media and keys available to a system provider to facilitate downgrading on their own systems.
  • Backup All
  • Disable UEFI secure priming if necessary. Change the settings so that the computer starts in the old BIOS mode.
  • You must now insert the Windows 7 license disk and follow the installation process, and if you plan to restore the previous Windows installation using the Windows.old folder, you can follow this article on how to restore a Windows 7 computer using the Windows.old folder.
  • It is important that you cannot activate the software online at the time of activation, only by telephone. Follow this message to activate Windows by phone. Use the Windows 8 license key to activate Windows 7 over the phone. The local activation support phone number is displayed and you must call the activation support line. The Microsoft representative will give you a one-way activation code that you can use to activate Windows 7.
  • If your OEM has preinstalled the Windows 7 Professional product key on your PC, install Windows 7 Professional using the recovery media. You can also install Windows 7 Professional with an original version of the installation media. Your system is automatically activated using the product key inserted in the BIOS.
  • If your OEM has not introduced your product key into your PC BIOS, insert the Windows 7 installation media and follow the on-screen instructions. Enter the Windows 7 license key when prompted and activate it as usual.

There is one more thing you should know before downgrading. If you downgraded from a Windows 8 PC preinstalled with Windows 7 PC, make sure you have the appropriate drivers. Under the Microsoft Downgrade Rights Agreement, neither Microsoft nor the PC manufacturer is required to provide customer support if you choose to upgrade from Windows 8 to Windows 7. This means you are alone, so make sure you gather all the necessary drivers, product keys, etc. before you start the process.

For more information, visit the Microsoft website.

Microsoft has made things difficult. A better option would be a clean installation of Windows 7

– With Shyam Sasindran & Hemant Saxena

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