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Message 1 of 6
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Question regarding Windows upgrade.

HP Recommended
HP Compaq Pro 4300 SFF
Microsoft Windows 7 (32-bit)

Hi,

I have a question regarding Windows upgrade.

I currently have Windows 7 32-bit installed and got really confused with internet answers so i decided to ask here.

 

I read that Windowses share the same License Key(25 character long) for both bit versions and don't know if that's true because some people said yes, some said no.

 

On top of that comes another question: I have a OEM desktop which has no sticker attached to it, does that mean that the key is built into BIOS as people suggested on the internet? If so, will I be able to install my version of Windows 7 but 64-bit instead and it will activate by itself or I can't do much about It?

 

And last question: If i would be able to upgrade to 64-bit version what image should i download because i read that there are different images for OEMs and Standalone versions.

 

Any help would be nice! Best regards, Emil.

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Message 2 of 6
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Hi, Emil:

 

Yes, the same key works on both bit versions of W7, but the problem will be finding both the key and the installation media.

 

If your PC does not have a product key on the case, it may be possible that the PC has a Windows 8 key in the BIOS and was downgraded to W7 Pro 32 bit at the factory.

 

Run the free utility that I zipped up and attached below and it will show you if there is a W8 Pro OEM product key in the BIOS.

 

You would not be able to use that key to activate W7, but you could clean install W8.1 64 bit if it has a W8 Pro product key and upgrade for free to W10 Pro 64 bit if you want.

 

I would forget about trying to install W7 64 bit unless you have the Polish W7 64 bit installation media and a W7 product key.

 

The installed W7 product key provided by the showkey plus report will most likely not work to activate Windows.

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Message 3 of 6
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@emilowP 

Good questions -- let me attempt to answer them for you ...

 

Product Key -- The Windows 10 upgrade reuses the existing product key -- which is why it needs to be done from INSIDE Windows instead of booting from install media.  It knows how to find and read the key, so there is nothing you have to do to make that happen -- but there are precautions you should take so, BEFORE you do the upgrade, follow these instructions from the community Win10 forums about creating a genuineticket.xml file: http://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/23354-clean-install-windows-10-directly-without-having-upgrade-fi...

 

The product key is encoded into the firmware -- but if you want it for your records, here is a utility you can run that will retrieve it:  ShowKeyPlus - Windows 10 Forums

 

Unfortunately, there is no upgrade path from 32-bit Windows to 64-bit Windows; instead, a clean-install is required and you will lose everything in the process since nothing is then carried over.

 

And finally, these older PCs do not fare well generally with Win10 upgrades these days, so I would strongly advise you read the information below about doing an image backup BEFORE attempting the upgrade -- so that if it goes badly, you have something to restore FROM.

 

------------------------

I personally prefer to use third-party Backup solutions as they tend to be both more flexible and more reliable than any built-in solutions.

Macrium Reflect (MR) provides a FREE version that can be used to image and restore partitions or entire drives.

What I recommend is the following:
1) Download and install Macrium Reflect (MR) from here: http://www.macrium.com/reflectfree.aspx
2) Run MR and choose the option: "Create an image of the partition(s) required to backup and restore Windows" to write a full backup to an external drive or USB stick
3) Use the option to create a boot USB stick or CD

My experience is that MR, when using the High Compression option, typically can compress the saved image file to about 50% of the USED space in the OS partition. This means if you have an 80GB OS partition, and 40GB is used, MR only needs about 20GB to store the image file.

I use this all the time and it typically takes less than 15 minutes to do the image backup and about the same time or less to do a restore.

NOW, you have the means to restore a full working system from the external drive or USB stick in only a few minutes.

***If my post helped, click the White thumbs-up symbol to say thanks***

***Please mark Accept As Solution if my post solved your problem***

I am a volunteer and I do not work for, nor represent, HP
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Message 4 of 6
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Hi,

thanks for your answers, this time i have another question.

i managed to upgrade from Win 7 Pro to Win 10 Pro on my notebook, I believe an OEM version. I didi it with the mediacreationtool2004 from Microsoft. Can i use that new key i got from ShowKeyPlus to clean install Win 10 Pro?

If so from where do i get the iso for Win10 oem or is it no longer a thing for Win10, i didnt look it up, would be nice if You could help me.

Best regards, Emil.

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Message 5 of 6
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Hi, Emil:

 

Now that you have upgraded to W10 Pro, you can clean install W10 Pro anytime you want by making bootable installation media using the media creation tool at the link below.

 

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10

 

When you boot from the media, select the version of W10 you want to install (in this case W10 Pro), and when you get to the part that asks you to enter a product key, select the 'I don't have a product key' option and W10 will install and automatically activate once you are connected to the internet.

 

You can do the same thing for your 4300 Pro.   Take the free upgrade from W7 32 bit to W10 32 bit, and once you see that Windows is activated with a digital license, go ahead and clean install W10 64 bit using the same approach.

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@emilowP 

While I understand that you might want an OEM ISO, you don't need one because you did an in-place upgrade and that kept the HP files. Plus, HP does not provide OEM ISOs for download.

 

If you follow the directions I provided for doing an image backup, then you have a means to restore the OEM version you have now if you need to do that in the future.

***If my post helped, click the White thumbs-up symbol to say thanks***

***Please mark Accept As Solution if my post solved your problem***

I am a volunteer and I do not work for, nor represent, HP
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