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Upgrading and Fixing Computers: Do-it-Yourself For Dummies® by Andy Rathbone

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Chapter 18. Installing or Upgrading to Windows 7

Topics and tasks in this chapter

  • Knowing what hardware you need

  • Choosing a 32- or 64-bit version of Windows 7

  • Running Windows Upgrade Advisor

  • Upgrading from Windows Vista to Windows 7

  • Installing Windows 7 over Windows XP or onto an empty hard drive

  • Upgrading to a better version of Windows 7 on a netbook

Walk into nearly any computer store today, and you'll see Windows 7 running on every single computer. Nearly 90 percent of today's computers arrive with Windows 7 already beaming from their monitors. So, who still needs to install Windows 7? Well, you'll be reading this chapter if you fall into any one of these three groups:

  • Your computer runs Windows XP or Windows Vista, and you want to move to Windows 7.

  • You've replaced or upgraded a hard drive, and need to install or reinstall Windows 7 onto it.

  • You're outgrowing Windows 7 Starter edition, which came on your netbook, and you want to upgrade to a more powerful version of Windows.

This chapter walks you through each of those scenarios.

Understanding Windows 7's Hardware Requirements

Windows 7 usually runs well on computers purchased within the past four or five years. Before upgrading your computer, though, make sure that you've run through the following checklist:

  • Compatibility: Before upgrading or installing Windows 7 onto your computer, download and run Microsoft's Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor, described in this chapter's first task. The program alerts you beforehand if parts of your computer won't ...

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