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  Workaround Discovered For Clean Install With Vista Upgrade DVDs
Time: 01:40 EST/06:40 GMT | News Source: Windows SuperSite | Posted By: Robert Stein

Microsoft internal documentation reveals workaround for Vista Upgrade DVDs with no need for a previous version of Windows

Per Microsoft's new licensing requirements for Vista, users are required to install a Windows Vista Upgrade from within Windows XP. When this occurs, the Windows XP license is forfeited and the Windows Vista installation process can take place.

Now, however, this workaround allows users to perform a “clean install.” The process is a bit tedious, but is not hard are all to complete. Users have to perform these simple steps to perform a clean install of Vista without a previous version of Windows installed with an upgrade DVD:

  1. Boot from the Windows Vista Upgrade DVD and start the setup program.
  2. When prompted to enter your product key, DO NOT enter it. Click "Next" and proceed with setup. This will install Windows Vista as a 30-day trial.
  3. When prompted, select the edition of Vista which you have purchased and continue with setup.
  4. Once setup has been completed and you have been brought to the desktop for the first time, run the install program from within Windows Vista.
  5. This time, type in your product key when prompted.
  6. When asked whether to perform an Upgrade or Custom (advanced) install, choose Custom (advanced) to perform a clean install of Vista. Yes, this means that you will have to install Vista for a second time.
  7. Once setup has completed for the second time, you should be able to activate Windows Vista normally. You can also delete the Windows.old directory which contains information from the first Vista install.
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#1 By 1401 ( at 1/31/2007 7:41:23 AM
Be sure and activate your installation both times, so that on the second time your installation will be marked as 'not geniune' and you'll have to call Microsoft and pay for the copy again.


This post was edited by chrishedlund on Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 07:42.

#2 By 37 ( at 1/31/2007 7:44:36 AM
I already knew this stuff.

#3 By 73033 ( at 1/31/2007 7:49:45 AM
Does this stike anyone as being a dumb work around?
I mean, who would want even fool with installing Vista 2 times.
As an IT Professional, I would rather buy the Full version than fool with this stupid problem that Microsoft caused.

This really is going to make a lot of people mad in the IT world that have bought a Legal copy of Windows XP only to not be able to do a clean install like they have been able to do since the days of Windows 95/98.
Come on Microsoft, are you trying to make us MAD?!

This post was edited by morganman25 on Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 07:50.

#4 By 4209 ( at 1/31/2007 8:07:35 AM
Funny. I did a clean install of 64 bit and it activated just fine and was an upgrade license.

#5 By 13759 ( at 1/31/2007 8:37:22 AM
So technically, one could install the 'upgrade' whether they had a valid XP or not; like on a brand new computer for example...

#6 By 11131 ( at 1/31/2007 8:55:36 AM
Why would you have to install it twice? Could you not just install it without a key and then goto activate and then when it asks for your key, type it in and activate ????

This post was edited by al_fiend on Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 08:55.

#7 By 73040 ( at 1/31/2007 8:59:31 AM
Remeber back in the day,with just a little work you could install windows 95 Upgrade as the Full version

#8 By 23275 ( at 1/31/2007 10:09:30 AM
Ref my post from yesterday - I had no issues whatever performing a clean install using Windows Vista Ultimate edition upgrade media. The set was a boxed retail version - copy 16690 of 25000 limited signature series sold on Amazon. The "do" was done in under 25 minutes on a weaker Pent D with 1 GB RAM [e.g., nothing at all fancy]. I can't replicate what some folks are seeing, or believe to be true about a clean install using upgrade media.

From yesterday: REF Windows Vista Ultimate edition retail boxed upgrade - page 5 of the enclosed manual - "Installing Windows Vista" - last paragraph - it reads: "If your computer has no operating system installed, or if you want to create, extend, delete, or format partitions, you need to restart your computer while the installation disc is inserted in the CD or DVD drive. Your computer will then start from the installation disc. If you are asked to press a key to start from CD or DVD, press any key. If the Install Windows page is displayed, go to step 2.

If the Install Windows page is not displayed and you're not asked to press a key to start from CD or DVD, you might have to specify that your computer use its CD or DVD drive as the startup device. To learn how to do that, go to Windows Online Help and Support ( and search for "start Windows from CD or DVD."

The language suggests that no existing, installed version of a qualifying operating system need be present in order to boot from the media, or perform an upgrade. Now to test it.

#9 By 1401 ( at 1/31/2007 11:31:49 PM
Ketchum - did you actually purchase a retail copy of Vista Ultimate? As in $399 retail? Did you also get the family pack upgrades of Home Premium?

#10 By 23275 ( at 2/1/2007 1:15:12 AM
#9, Yes, I did purchase a fully boxed retail upgrade copy for my home workstation - and Office 2007, as well. While my company is a Microsoft Partner, and we do have MSDN Universal, and a bevy of licenses that we get via the partner channel, I still buy all my software that I use for "personal use." Always have - always will. It's simple... respect for the law and respect for others. I reason I have to give it fully in order to earn it.

So yup, copy 16690 of 25000 was a personal purchase - I have not yet, nor will I buy home premium for home - where I have a domain, ISA and a personal lab that has more than a few PC's [9 or so at any given time] - connected on a DS-1 that routes directly to our datacenter over a CCOEF that we nailed up years ago as an experiment when we started selling clear channels we were building for our customers. The other nine client systems at home are all running a mix of XP Pro, Tablet PC, and MCE2005. New worstations are planned for home - and to be placed in a Vista Ultimate only domain, once W2K7 Server is a bit more evolved - probably over the summer. I did think of experimenting with the downloadable upgrades, but didn't see how the experience would be much different from an ISO, etc.. I like the idea, though - anytime upgrades and all. It is a masterful bit of business Microsoft has come up with and I admire the initiative. I don't know how well it will be supported - time will tell.

On a side note, the after purchase, out of the box experience with Vista Ultimate is pretty good. The packaging is very nice, though upon opening it, I did think my maws would shred it. Tomorrow we put in a killer media rig for a long standing customer - driving a remote flat screen as well as a [get this...] 65" Panasonic Plasma that supports 1920 x 1080P. Sixty-five inches - lord of mercy... any case... the custom built rig is amazing - our guys put a lot of effort into it and the build, which includes Xbox 360, an HD DVD player, RF wireless remotes and a custom stand for the system. I installed the system and network today and we finish up in the AM with the plasma and its mounts and a Yamaha YSP sound projector and pre-amp. Off topic I know, but I've written some about what Vista means to customers and the above is a good example. The day after, we do the same drill for another customer's home - both are business customers, too... and how long do you think it will be before they demand Vista at work after using it at home? Cheers.

#11 By 8556 ( at 2/1/2007 2:02:56 PM
#10. Man, do I wish my customers had the cash for the rig you set up. One question, is the plasma totally silent or is there a slight high pitched sound coming from it?

Do you sell, or offer in some way, layouts of the setup you describe? Maybe some of the farmers in my area have a little cash set aside. What cabling, and line condtioners, did you use?

#12 By 23275 ( at 2/1/2007 2:51:23 PM
#11, Before I go into the details of this build - one thing... this customer, who is also a business customer, started from zip, just like I did and many others we work for. We make a lot of investments in them, as we do all customers - e.g., a lot of service and tools that we do not bill for right away. That is less costly than sales forces, marketing and ads... etc... - so this guy can afford this, because his business really grew. That's a process we repeat over and over - as they grow.. they buy more... we grow with them. So, it's really neat to be a part of that and this customer and many, count my company as being among their best assets - sure makes work a lot less like work and more like a team effort.

No, the TV is very quiet and makes little noise that I, or the customer can hear. We'll see how she does over time. We went DVI/HDMI from our WMC Vista based system [HDCP Compliant].
We use Furman line conditioners for power, and Gefen cables [you have to be careful, because not all support a true 1080P signal]. We will be offering this set up and a lot like it, or not like it [meaning, more traditional network and systems, etc..] in a new "Community Center" we have built and are now testing. This will serve as a companion site to our new main site - also in testing. In the community center, we will have not just images, etc... but what will essentially be 1 to 1 scale maps, covering what we do, why we do it, and how we do it. We'll also be providing access to people like all of you, to people like all of us - we help a great of people, charities and schools and all we ask is that people be nice - the Golden Rule thing...

Sounds weird, and it would take way too long to go into why - let's just leave it at most of us are former/retired soldiers and we owe a lot to many and everything to a few. People will also get to read what we babble on about - a lot of code help and interact with our team. We will not charge for any of these services - ever! What people can be sure of is that if it is posted, said, or written, it will have been proven to ourselves that it is true and works.
Oh, one other cool bit... we added an ultra wideband audio video transmitter to the RF wireless keyboard, mouse and a second display, etc... are remoted from the Vista WMC, which is directly connected to the 65" plasma. All items less the screens are hidden inside custom cabinets and RF carries commands to the blasters via an adapter - his wife hates AV gear and wanted it all hidden. ***Bummer, because the custom VFD is very nice looking and pretty cool.

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