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Testing the water with Windows 10 without shooting myself in the foot with Win7 licence

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Technique    38

I have a laptop that came pre-installed with Windows 7 which will likely stay on Windows 7 for what i use it for. but i'm not totally closed-minded.

 

The desktop I have on the other hand is likely to get put on Windows 10 what with Windows 7 support coming to an end in a few weeks. Whenever the move to Win10 comes i don't know but it's likely. I'd like to try it out beforehand though to see if it runs A-ok with my machine.

 

I have a spare SSD drive that's got nothing on it that i can use. I could just disconnect all drives and have this as the only one connected.

My concern really is that you need a licence to install Windows 10. I remember reading some time ago if you use your Windows 7 licence then it becomes tied to Windows 10 once you make the move. I want to choose to move, not be forced to because i've entered a licence as a tester only to find out it's actually a final decision.

 

So can i install Win10 to a SSD to test it out without fear of the Win7 licence i have being tied to it? Do i just follow the link here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/software-download/windows10

?

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Jim K    13,930

You can run Windows 10 without a product key or activation.  You'll have some limitations (like you won't be able to Personalize it).  If you decide that you like it ... you can enter your product key later and activate (without needing to reinstall). 

 

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Brandon H    3,262

Jim is correct; on top of that I seem to remember you can still use your key to go back to Windows 7 if desired; it's just that you can't have both OS's activated at the same time.

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Technique    38

Ah so i'm good so long as i don't actually click to activate it? That's where the problem will arise?

 

I only really want to do this to see if my old hardware will 'get along' with Windows 10 or whether it'll throw up some compatibility issues. I don't want to go through the whole upgrading process for real only to find there's issues. Sure i could backup and revert back to Windows 7 but when i've a spare drive why go through that hassle?

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Jim K    13,930
9 minutes ago, Technique said:

Ah so i'm good so long as i don't actually click to activate it? That's where the problem will arise?

 

I only really want to do this to see if my old hardware will 'get along' with Windows 10 or whether it'll throw up some compatibility issues. I don't want to go through the whole upgrading process for real only to find there's issues. Sure i could backup and revert back to Windows 7 but when i've a spare drive why go through that hassle?

Yea, but if you're worried about key ... just don't enter it.  Unlike previous Windows ... you could enter a product key and have a grace period to activate (if I recall correctly).  With Windows 10 ... when you enter the product key it wants to activate then.

 

So yea, just run it without a product key ... you won't have any limitations with respect to hardware, drivers, etc. giving you the chance to make sure everything works.  Just some small limitations with regards to customizing.  

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SnoopZ    268

Is there also not a tool MS provide to tell you if your system will be compatible with Windows 10 before upgrading?

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Brandon H    3,262
4 minutes ago, SnoopZ said:

Is there also not a tool MS provide to tell you if your system will be compatible with Windows 10 before upgrading?

yes but that only tells you so much. depending on the age of the hardware you could still have driver issues even if that tool gives you the green light.

 

I agree with OP; testing physically is the best way to know for sure everything will work properly :) especially since you can install without a key; then if everything works as expected just enter your key and activate. since OP is going to be using a spare drive there's no reason not to :)

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Technique    38

The machine i have is coming up 10 years old so i figured it best to try it out. Possibly it'll all work fine but i want to be sure.

 

I'll get round to building another PC one day but that probably wont be for a while yet. The requirement to move to Windows 10 is likely to be sooner than a new PC build.

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macoman    2,679

I was able a year ago to changed my Windows 7 license key to a Windows 10 license... check to see if you can upgrade windows 7 to 10 for free using your windows 7 license.

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Brandon H    3,262
3 minutes ago, macoman said:

I was able a year ago to changed my Windows 7 license key to a Windows 10 license... check to see if you can upgrade windows 7 to 10 for free using your windows 7 license.

no offense macoman but I don't think you understood the thread fully.

 

OP is already aware he can use his 7 key to activate 10; he's afraid if 10 doesn't work out well on his aging PC he won't be able to downgrade back to 7 if he activates the key on 10.

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macoman    2,679
5 minutes ago, Brandon H said:

no offense macoman but I don't think you understood the thread fully.

 

OP is already aware he can use his 7 key to activate 10; he's afraid if 10 doesn't work out well on his aging PC he won't be able to downgrade back to 7 if he activates the key on 10.

my bad... I thought he didn't know he could do it.

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erpster3    36
On 12/20/2019 at 11:03 AM, SnoopZ said:

Is there also not a tool MS provide to tell you if your system will be compatible with Windows 10 before upgrading?

well that tool was discontinued after the free Win10 upgrade period ended in July 2016 and MS does not offer it anymore

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