Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

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Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Mon Mar 31, 2014 5:07 pm

I have a Windows XP system still valid license sitting on a bootable hard drive. I stopped using it about 18 months ago. The old PC parts are in bins and the hard drive is just sitting on a shelf.

Assuming I can locate all of the parts, I should still have the ability to rebuild that old system long enough to boot that XP system and perform a Macrium backup of the C partition.

So here's what I want to do and I need to know if this is feasible.

1. rebuild the old system (motherboard, CPU, memory, hard drive, PSU).
2. Start up Windows XP
3. Take a Macrium Reflect backup of the C partition
4. disassemble the system; rebuild with all new parts (motherboard, CPU, memory)
5. Perform Macrium bare metal restore to new hard drive (an SSD) on that new hardware
6. Perform an immediate Windows 8 Pro upgrade (I believe I still have an available upgrade key here someplace)
7. Use Windows 8's "reset" facility to remove all traces of the prior install, including apps, data, etc.
8. Proceed to apply all Windows 8 updates to bring it to 8.1 with most current "everything"

Intended result: A brand-new Windows 8.1 on a brand-new system.

What do you think?
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Mon Mar 31, 2014 5:39 pm

Most likely won't work. Microsoft does not support upgrading straight from XP to 8.x, especially if you're doing it properly and upgrading to 64-bit.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Mon Mar 31, 2014 5:42 pm

Don't think so. I had an old XP machine (the one in my sig) and tried to go to either Windows 8 32 or 64. Wouldn't let me so I had to install Vista then Windows 8. Not saying there isn't a way but not a direct and simple approach.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Tue Apr 01, 2014 12:26 am

Thanks fellas. I'll re-research the XP issue; I sure did think it was eligible, but maybe I'm wrong about that.

But all is not lost. I believe I also have an unimpinged Vista install disc and license. I'll check my records.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Tue Apr 01, 2014 7:15 am

If you've got the cash to spare, Micro$oft is takign $100 off for peeps buying "select" new $600+ Windows 8 system using an XP system to make said purchase. And that's not so bad, because they have their signature models which remove the bloatware from the factory. You have to be using XP to see the deal, though

http://content.microsoftstore.com/en-us ... fer-xp-100

EDIT: Something I did once was "upgrade" by installing from DVD Vista and when it asked me where the prior install was just swapped the DVDs out for my XP, put in the product key when it asked, and swapped back to my Vista DVD and continued on with the install. I'm not sure if that method works any more, though.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Tue Apr 01, 2014 8:54 am

Losergamer04 wrote:If you've got the cash to spare, Micro$oft is takign $100 off for peeps buying "select" new $600+ Windows 8 system using an XP system to make said purchase. And that's not so bad, because they have their signature models which remove the bloatware from the factory. You have to be using XP to see the deal, though

http://content.microsoftstore.com/en-us ... fer-xp-100

EDIT: Something I did once was "upgrade" by installing from DVD Vista and when it asked me where the prior install was just swapped the DVDs out for my XP, put in the product key when it asked, and swapped back to my Vista DVD and continued on with the install. I'm not sure if that method works any more, though.


It's even simpler these days. Just use the 8/8.1 DVD to install cleanly, and change one registry setting from 1 to 0. Done. That's the only record Windows 8 makes, about how you got to 8 the first time. Registry key is called MediaBoot, and you should be able to figure it out from there.

Here's some info on upgrading to 8 from Paul Thurrott: http://winsupersite.com/article/windows ... dia-144648
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Wed Apr 02, 2014 6:41 pm

From that article linkd by Forge, it sure does sound like I can do it from XP:

"As you know, the web-based Windows 8 Setup application—called Upgrade Assistant—is the preferred method for installing Windows 8, but it obviously requires that you are already running some previous OS. If that OS is Windows XP, Vista, or 7, you can simply step through the install process from within that OS, and when you get to the step called “Choose what to keep,” just choose “Nothing”. That’s a clean install, and it should just work, and Windows 8 will activate later without issues."


And I confirmed; I do indeed have an available upgrade key. I think I'm going to try this sometime in the next month.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Wed Apr 02, 2014 9:36 pm

Just do it right, get bootable 8 or 8.1 media, boot from that, clean install, change the registry key to indicate an upgrade install instead of clean, and use your upgrade key. Actually booting the old OS and running the upgrade advisor is not needed and can complicate things. Actually using the upgrade util to upgrade is a mess, I've had lots of installs with munged bits. Media boot install is what you want.

Then just note your XP install is trashed by the 8 upgrade, and you're in the clear legally and morally, with the cleanest install.

There is no need to do anything at all with the old XP install. There is no verification of the previous OS you're upgrading from. Take advantage of MS's leniency and do it right.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Sun Apr 06, 2014 11:05 am

Forge wrote:Just do it right, get bootable 8 or 8.1 media, boot from that, clean install, change the registry key to indicate an upgrade install instead of clean, and use your upgrade key.

Clean install with what key? Using the upgrade key will fail it with a message. I'm certain I tried this 18 months ago and it didn't work. I have one "full install" key, but that environment is already my production install, so I don't want to mess up that key

Actually booting the old OS and running the upgrade advisor is not needed and can complicate things. Actually using the upgrade util to upgrade is a mess, I've had lots of installs with munged bits. Media boot install is what you want.

I have not had any trouble doing the upgrade in place, but it has only been from Windows 7, not Windows XP

Then just note your XP install is trashed by the 8 upgrade, and you're in the clear legally and morally, with the cleanest install.

XP install is trashed assuming I've used the same old hard drive and not a new one? Because an alternative would be to use a new hard drive and then wipe the old XP drive once 8 is verified working.

There is no need to do anything at all with the old XP install. There is no verification of the previous OS you're upgrading from. Take advantage of MS's leniency and do it right.


No previous OS verification, but I guess I'm the reverse of you; I've not had good luck trying to do this without the upgrade advisor; hence all the questions above.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Sun Apr 06, 2014 11:26 am

BIF wrote:
Forge wrote:Just do it right, get bootable 8 or 8.1 media, boot from that, clean install, change the registry key to indicate an upgrade install instead of clean, and use your upgrade key.

Clean install with what key? Using the upgrade key will fail it with a message. I'm certain I tried this 18 months ago and it didn't work. I have one "full install" key, but that environment is already my production install, so I don't want to mess up that key

Actually booting the old OS and running the upgrade advisor is not needed and can complicate things. Actually using the upgrade util to upgrade is a mess, I've had lots of installs with munged bits. Media boot install is what you want.

I have not had any trouble doing the upgrade in place, but it has only been from Windows 7, not Windows XP

Then just note your XP install is trashed by the 8 upgrade, and you're in the clear legally and morally, with the cleanest install.

XP install is trashed assuming I've used the same old hard drive and not a new one? Because an alternative would be to use a new hard drive and then wipe the old XP drive once 8 is verified working.

There is no need to do anything at all with the old XP install. There is no verification of the previous OS you're upgrading from. Take advantage of MS's leniency and do it right.


No previous OS verification, but I guess I'm the reverse of you; I've not had good luck trying to do this without the upgrade advisor; hence all the questions above.

Read Forge's link above to Paul Thurrott's page. That should work.
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Re: Windows XP-to-8; Can I do it "this way"?

Postposted on Mon Apr 07, 2014 8:29 pm

BIF wrote:Clean install with what key? Using the upgrade key will fail it with a message.

This actually does work. Not sure what went wrong for you before, but I've done it recently and had it work. If it does fail for some exotic reason, you can get past this by using a GVLK (generic volume license key), that will work to get the install done but cannot ever be activated. If you need one, the Google search is pretty simple, I'll have to leave you to it or PM me. You'll need to get things working (working license) post-install, but this will at least get the OS onto the disk.

XP install is trashed assuming I've used the same old hard drive and not a new one? Because an alternative would be to use a new hard drive and then wipe the old XP drive once 8 is verified working.

Yes, that's fine. I don't mean you need to do anything, I mean that mentally you will need to make note that the old XP install is no longer valid for use. This isn't a technical requirement, but for licensing purposes. Feel free to omit this step entirely if I've been confusing, but using your "upgraded" XP install after installing/running the Upgrade 8 is technically a violation.

No previous OS verification, but I guess I'm the reverse of you; I've not had good luck trying to do this without the upgrade advisor; hence all the questions above.

Bummer, sorry to hear it. I used the UA once, after that I just bought copies with it, and installed clean. I've probably installed Windows 8/8.1 about 200-300 times by now. About to do it again in a few days, now that my new laptop has a legit BIOS license.
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