Can you install Windows 8 upgrade on a totally empty (ie new) drive?


Recommended Posts

Frank Cervantes

If you downloaded the Windows 8 upgrade version from the Microsoft store, you are required to have a XP through Win7. Otherwise, you will NOT be allowed to activate. I know this for a fact because I have tried it and the last error message I received after installing to a brand new hard drive went something along the lines of "this activation code is not valid for a clean intall"

Link to post
Share on other sites
Frank Cervantes

okay so... i am not elligible for the upgrade if i use a new hard disk drive and i have to purchase the OEM copy ...?

If you have your previous OS disks do a minimal install and don't even activate it. Then you can install Windows 8 upgrade without a problem. The upgrade activation code given with the upgrade does not allow for a clean install and does not ask for the disk of the previous eligible OS... go figure.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Shane Nokes

If you have your previous OS disks do a minimal install and don't even activate it. Then you can install Windows 8 upgrade without a problem. The upgrade activation code given with the upgrade does not allow for a clean install and does not ask for the disk of the previous eligible OS... go figure.

Actually it does allow for a clean install. You can boot the machine (as long as there is a prior valid OS) and then using the disc completely wipe the drive and install 8, and it will activate just fine.

What you can't do is have a completely new system without anything on it and install the upgrade and have it activate.

I've went over this several times in prior posts. I would say at least 20-30 times now...minimum. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites
Harrison H.

I'm not going to read through 17 pages here, but doing a clean install with the upgrade disc is entirely possible, in fact I've already done it 3 times. I originally bought the upgrades and did in place upgrades, but decided to do a fresh install. What you have to do is to install Windows fresh like you normally would. When Windows boots up after the install, it will be unactivated and won't be able to activate. You need to use regedit to browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Setup\OOBE

and change MediaBootInstall to 0.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Shane Nokes

I'm not going to read through 17 pages here, but doing a clean install with the upgrade disc is entirely possible, in fact I've already done it 3 times. I originally bought the upgrades and did in place upgrades, but decided to do a fresh install. What you have to do is to install Windows fresh like you normally would. When Windows boots up after the install, it will be unactivated and won't be able to activate. You need to use regedit to browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Setup\OOBE

and change MediaBootInstall to 0.

Been discussed, and that's a workaround that involves violating the End User License Agreement.

If you don't have a valid license that you have used to upgrade from then essentially you're committing fraud in order to get a good price. :p

Link to post
Share on other sites
+deinabog

I have been digging through all the posts here and can't find a solid, 100% confirmation on the following:

Can you install the Windows 8 Upgrade on a totally blank (ie new) hard drive? I keep seeing people post that they booted off the disc and were able to do a clean install, but they don't always indicate if there was an existing OS installed, which the upgrade disc would obviously see. Has anyone taken a totally empty/new drive with absolutely nothing on it prior to booting off the upgrade disc, no other drives with an OS that might be seen, and installed Windows 8 and have it activate properly? Microsoft supposedly has said a previous OS has to be installed/seen.

I've done it. I used the keys provided by Microsoft thru my Technet subscription and booted off a Windows 8 disc I burned. If you purchase an upgrade then you will need a an OS such as Windows 7 or Vista to install Win8; the full version will allow you to boot from the disc and perform a clean installation. Hope this helps.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Harrison H.

Been discussed, and that's a workaround that involves violating the End User License Agreement.

If you don't have a valid license that you have used to upgrade from then essentially you're committing fraud in order to get a good price. :p

I'm not advocating doing it for the price. I was simply stating it's an option instead of having to do an in place upgrade. I prefer clean installs. If I build a new computer, I'd buy the system builder license though. The times I've used this trick was simply to do a clean install instead of an in place upgrade from Win7.

Link to post
Share on other sites
fix-this!

no you cannot as i tried. you need to install w7 first then do a fresh install of w8.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Shane Nokes

I'm not advocating doing it for the price. I was simply stating it's an option instead of having to do an in place upgrade. I prefer clean installs. If I build a new computer, I'd buy the system builder license though. The times I've used this trick was simply to do a clean install instead of an in place upgrade from Win7.

In that case then the trick isn't needed. You boot, it picks up 7 on the disk, you wipe the disk and install 8.

Clean install that activates due to detection of prior valid OS.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Xenomorph

no you cannot as i tried. you need to install w7 first then do a fresh install of w8.

I purchased the $14.99 Upgrade key. Using that, I did a FRESH/CLEAN instal (formatted hard drive, NO previous OS) with the following media:

- Windows 8 Pro Retail

- Windows 8 Pro Volume License

With the Retail media, you must enter a key during install. It accepts the Upgrade key.

With the Volume License media, you do not need to enter a key during install.

With the Retail media install, you must change the registry key from 1 to 0, do "slmgr -rearm", then reboot. It will activate.

With the Volume License media install, you must change your key using "slmgr.vbs -ipk", then change the registry key from 1 to 0, do "slmgr -rearm", then reboot. It will activate.

I do not recommend using the Volume License media, as it does not support the "Add features to Windows" function, and so cannot install Media Center.

Link to post
Share on other sites
xWhiplash

I think people are getting confused about the different usage of the word Clean Install.

When I had Windows 7 installed, I used my OS X partition to delete the drive. In this case, I installed Windows 8 on the clean drive BEFORE the upgrade process began. It would not activate.

If you have Windows 7 installed and perform a clean install WITH the Windows 8 media, it will work.

So yes, I think the upgrade media/process needs to be aware of a previous OS. It would not work for me on a clean drive BEFORE the process began, I needed Windows 7 installed, then with the Windows 8 media I performed a clean install by formatting the drive, but I did it with the Windows 8 media.

Is that the case, or was it a fluke my key did not activate at the same time I use OS X to delete Windows 7 and try it?

I was also using the $40 upgrade ISO it downloaded, so the rules might be different with the retail version?

Link to post
Share on other sites
stockwiz

just tried reinstalling windows 8 on a brand new intel 180GB solid state drive purchased Thanksgiving day and got the error using the upgrade key without upgrading. . A quick google search provided the registry fix and the rearm and restart method which worked immediately and it activated automatically upon reboot. The only hardware change was this boot drive.

The solid state drive I had I put in my bedroom computer and reinstalled windows 8. That one activated itself automatically with the product key I used for that computer with no errors. Windows appeared to recognize the previous installation of windows 8 on the drive. The only hardware change was again, this boot drive.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...
dhaslam67

Wow Shane seems like you don't believe there are honest people in the world. Personally I have at least 10 XPpro valid license keys that I paid a total of over a thousand dollars for and countless Win7 honest to goodness real licenses. Seems that I should be able to call MS and give them one of my legitimate keys and do a clean install. Seems to me that if you call and they are intelligent enough to accept a person like me as a credible key holder they are obligated to take care of my needs, and correct me if I'm wrong, if MS agrees that I am credible and have valid keys with which to upgrade from it is not a violation at all. The only violation here seeems to me to be the violation of my intelligence by someone who clearly has no idea that the world harbors not only the dis-honest people but the honest too. And after forking over a thousand dollars I am not only in perfect harmony with the license agreement but I am 100% entitled to not be treated like a two bit criminal just because I'd like to put my new version of windows on a, wait for it...NEW hard drive that has no existing OpSys on it. Thanks for your opinion, but perhaps you're not as smart as you think you are, if you look real close you might find out your just a...well that wouldn't be nice now would it? Bottom line if MS agrees you deserve a working OS it's not a violation, get it?

Link to post
Share on other sites
ingramator

Wow Shane seems like you don't believe there are honest people in the world. Personally I have at least 10 XPpro valid license keys that I paid a total of over a thousand dollars for and countless Win7 honest to goodness real licenses. Seems that I should be able to call MS and give them one of my legitimate keys and do a clean install. Seems to me that if you call and they are intelligent enough to accept a person like me as a credible key holder they are obligated to take care of my needs, and correct me if I'm wrong, if MS agrees that I am credible and have valid keys with which to upgrade from it is not a violation at all. The only violation here seeems to me to be the violation of my intelligence by someone who clearly has no idea that the world harbors not only the dis-honest people but the honest too. And after forking over a thousand dollars I am not only in perfect harmony with the license agreement but I am 100% entitled to not be treated like a two bit criminal just because I'd like to put my new version of windows on a, wait for it...NEW hard drive that has no existing OpSys on it. Thanks for your opinion, but perhaps you're not as smart as you think you are, if you look real close you might find out your just a...well that wouldn't be nice now would it? Bottom line if MS agrees you deserve a working OS it's not a violation, get it?

If you buy a new drive then you are not doing an upgrade to the OS are you? If you buy an upgrade license you are upgrading over a Windows OS you have bought previously. That is the fact of the matter, everything Shane has said is correct, no need to try and knock him. If you want to violate the EULA then cool bro that's your decision. Otherwise install Windows 7 and just upgrade over the top of it and format the disk to clean install.

Link to post
Share on other sites
jesseinsf

I have been digging through all the posts here and can't find a solid, 100% confirmation on the following:

OK, Here is the deal. When you buy the upgrade, you have to have a supported OS in order be able to purchase. After you buy the upgrade, you will be able to download it. You will have the options to "Install Now" or "Install Later". Choose later so you can have it make an ISO, DVD or USB flash Drive install. Now if you made a DVD or USB Flash Drive install you can then delete all partitions on the HDD and install Windows 8 as if it were not an upgrade as many times as you want. Just make sure that the hardware you installed it on is Identical at the time you purchased the upgrade. Now once you change any major hardware like "HDD, Video card, Motherboard, Ext. Then you have to re-activate with just one call. When you Activate via phone after a hardware change you then won't need to activate via phone again unless you change the hardware again. So, to answer you question.... you are changing your hardware, so yes you have to use the phone to re-activate your PCs (But just once). The good thing is, you don't need to activate via phone again on every reformat after. This applies to all retail versions of Windows (Upgrade or full Version). Just remember that once to change major hardware you will need to phone activate either after reformatting or right after you change your hardware. But only one time on every hardware change. :-) ...Re-Activating rebinds your new hardware to the serial key.

Link to post
Share on other sites
KingCracker

I wondered this myself, I knew in past upgrades you had to have a previous windows OS. Just sucks if you have to install windows fresh. How much is the full version anyway?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...
xWhiplash

I wondered this myself, I knew in past upgrades you had to have a previous windows OS. Just sucks if you have to install windows fresh. How much is the full version anyway?

That is the thing. Last I checked there are no more full versions (other than OEM ones, but that has other issues legally speaking). So what happens if your hard drive dies?

Link to post
Share on other sites
HawkMan

In that case then the trick isn't needed. You boot, it picks up 7 on the disk, you wipe the disk and install 8.

Clean install that activates due to detection of prior valid OS.

The trick is however needed if I decide the replace the main HDD on my upgraded computer

Link to post
Share on other sites
ViperAFK

I just did this the other day. I had been previously been running windows 8 properly upgraded from windows 7 on my old drive. I got a new samsung 250 gb ssd. Installed windows 8 pro upgrade on it. of course wouldn't activate, so I just used the old "mediabootinstall" registry tweak, ran slmgr -rearm, ran windows update and everything is activated fine.

Link to post
Share on other sites
AJerman

So, in a somewhat related question, I signed up for the new PC offer to get Windows 8 for $15. I have no interest at the moment of using Windows 8, and I don't know if I ever will, but for $15 I'd like to redeem the offer just in case. Here's the thing, it asks me to run the upgrade assistant on the computer I want to upgrade, but it does print a key on screen after you have completed your order (saw a screenshot from someone else). They don't have any way of locking this down to that one specific system do they? Will that key be good for an upgrade down the line on any system I have? I ask because I'm at work, so I don't want to upgrade here, and at home, I don't know that I'd upgrade my only system, though it may be getting an upgrade itself soon, as well as me getting a laptop soon, and I may want to use it on any of these systems in the future, so I don't want it tied to specific hardware or else I'll just pass on the offer. If an when I do ever use the upgrade, I'd have no problem upgrading from a legal copy of Windows 7 to use my "upgrade key".

Any ideas?

Update: Found the answer to my own question here: http://www.windowsupgradeoffer.com/en-US/Home/Faq#FAQPage_Category2Literal.Text

Do I have to install the Windows 8 upgrade on the eligible PC, or can I install it on another PC?

The upgrade offer is tied to a Windows 7 PC purchased from June 2nd, 2012 through January 31, 2013, but you can choose to redeem the offer and install the upgrade on any compatible Windows-based PC with a qualifying base operating system.

So I'm not sure how exactly it's "tied to a Windows 7 PC purchased from June 2 through January 31", but you can still install it on any computer eligible for an upgrade. :laugh: Regardless, it should work on any upgrade. I'll stash this key away in case I ever feel the need to use Windows 8.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Dutchie64
      HI,

      Hope there are still some Surface2 (RT)  Win8 users around, as I still use mine almost daily besides my S3.

      The tablet ran the latest 04-2018 security update yesterday, but it messed up all my installed apps. Almost all of them refused to start and got stuck on the start/icon screen.
      It doesn't really matters if it's MS native apps or 3rd party ones.
      After some fiddling I got some of them to start again, by starting/closing them frequently, but are dog slow atm.

      While this was all happening, CPU and harddrive usage was over 60-70%%, as if Windows was still doing stuff. Even after multiple reboots/shutdowns.

      Also, the apps that refuse to start (for now) are apps that are not in the Store anymore. Coincidence?
      Does this sound familiar to someone, or did I just got a bad update experience?

      cheers!

      rob

       
    • By ogannon
      Hi All,
       
      I am trying to mend my parents in law's computer. It's a Lenovo with Windows 8. The computer is extremely slow - loading up the computer you need at least two attempts - the first attempt you get a blue screen. Using the PC I've encountered that the computer is extremely slow - mouse stops when you are moving it etc...
       
      I've run a disk cleanup and then also a virus run. These did not make a big difference.
       
      Does anyone have any further ideas on how to remedy this problem? Would prefer not to reboot the entire machine as I have lost the Office 2010 code.
    • By Sergey "hb860"
      Win+X Menu Editor for Windows
      version 2.0.0.1
      Win+X Menu Editor is one of my applications and it serves to provide you a simple and useful way to edit Win+X menu without system files modification. It keeps your system integrity untouched.
      With Win+X Menu Editor you are able:
      to add new items. to remove any item of Win+X menu. to change display name of any item of Win+X menu. to reorder Win+X menu items. Screens:


      This release features the following changes:
      hashlnk is not required anymore, all its functions are ported into the Win+X Menu Editor source code Numerous bugs are fixed, such as sorting bug or crash on empty Win+X menu Improved "add a program" feature New clean and useful UI with hotkeys, new icons The ability to move shortcuts between groups New feature - "Presets", which allows you to add various commands in Win+X menu, such as shutdown options, calculator and so on. Fixed a bug with built-in items renaming Video with new version is available at the download page.
      Download link
    • By Ian W
      Do you use the Libraries feature introduced in Windows 7 and / or the Saved Search (otherwise known as Virtual Folder) feature introduced in Windows Vista? If so, do you have a preference for either feature?

      While I like both features I, as you probably expected, prefer the Saved Search feature. Both Libraries and Saved Searches consolidate content from multiple locations in a single view, and both allow users to customize their viewing experience based on the content displayed. Libraries, however, only allow users to display content based on folder locations (e.g., they cannot reference content based solely on dates, file attributes, et cetera), and users must manually add folders to a library before their content will appear.

      In contrast, Saved Searches can reference multiple locations simultaneously—or an individual folder(s) if that is what a user desires—based on a user's criteria such as specific names, dates, metadata, types, and words or phrases within files themselves. Also unlike Libraries, users can refine their Saved Search results with Boolean operators, natural language search (in Windows Vista and Windows 7), query composition, and / or the options offered by the column headers in File Explorer.
    • By RickC
      I don't know what to do. It is driving me crazy. None of the solutions suggested have work. I turned off the adaptive brightness feature in the advanced settings and I also disabled the sensor in the msconfig and it still lower the brightness to almost not visible. I have a Sony Vaio that came with windows 8 and upgraded to 10. It does it with both versions.