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Last post Author Topic: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.  (Read 10487 times)

superboyac

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Hi everyone, I'm looking for a detailed way to transition my XP system to Win7 over a span of a couple of months.  I'll present my idea and concerns, and maybe you can address my issues.

My main PC is an XP system.  It's quite a beast.  I have TONS of software installed and when I transition over, I want most of it setup on the Win7 setup.  Now here's the problem:
When I go to Win7, i want the system drive to be C:.  Why is this an issue?  because my plan is to first install Windows 7 on my existing C drive as a dual boot thing.  But if I do that, because XP is already on there, so the Windows 7 will be installed on another letter like E.  That's fine for now, but when I finally transition over, I want the Windows 7 to be the C drive now.  Is that possible?  It seems to be more difficult than one would think.  I don't want everything in win7 to be referring to E and then I change over to C, and everything starts breaking.

Ideally, I'd like both of them to be C depending on which OS I've booted into.  So if I boot into XP, I want the system partition to be C and the other boot partition to be E.  But I want the same for when I boot into Win7.  I want the Win7 system partition to be C.  I just don't know if that is possible.

Eóin

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2010, 12:50:17 PM »
You are right that you certainly can't start with the Win7 drive as E: and later transistion it to C: without breaking things.

What should be possible though, if you're using separate drive, is to disconnect the XP when installing Win7. Then Win7 should refer to the one it's on as C. When you later connect back the XP drive it should get a label like E: from Win7 and not mess up anything.

I'm not sure if you're working with different partitions on the one drive?

superboyac

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2010, 12:51:44 PM »
You are right that you certainly can't start with the Win7 drive as E: and later transistion it to C: without breaking things.

What should be possible though, if you're using separate drive, is to disconnect the XP when installing Win7. Then Win7 should refer to the one it's on as C. When you later connect back the XP drive it should get a label like E: from Win7 and not mess up anything.

I'm not sure if you're working with different partitions on the one drive?
yes, I am talking about two partitions on one drive.

If I do what you said, can I have both be seen as C if I boot into each one independently?

superboyac

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2010, 01:10:21 PM »
Do you think I can use Bootit NG to handle all of this partition and drive letter management?  Meaning, can I use the program to have both boot options load the system drive as C?

Eóin

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2010, 01:25:48 PM »
I don't know, you could just try going for it, install Win7 and see if it labels it's own partition as C. Doing so should have no ill affects on the XP OS. All you'll lose is time ;)

Idealy you want to somehow hide the XP partition while installing Win7 so it doesn't try and be "intelligent" by selecting another letter.

mouser

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2010, 02:26:19 PM »
im not a big fan of dual booting, too many complications like this.. better keep 2 pcs, or even use a swappable boot hard drive.

superboyac

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2010, 02:37:26 PM »
im not a big fan of dual booting, too many complications like this.. better keep 2 pcs, or even use a swappable boot hard drive.
You may be right.  Maybe the best thing I can do is to make a complete image of my current C drive, store it on another drive in case I need it later.  Then just do a fresh win7 installation, and if anything goes wrong, I can recover my image from the other drive.

mouser

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2010, 03:30:56 PM »
bingo.
although i would still prefer to have 2 machines set up, the old one untouched, and the new one.  and then you can take your time setting up the new one and referring to the old one as you need it.

skwire

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2010, 03:44:28 PM »
What I would do is this:

1) Clone your current drive to another, spare hard drive.  Make that clone bootable and remove it from the main computer.
2) Wipe current drive and install Win7.  Install cloned drive in main computer.
3) Under Win7, run that cloned drive in an XP VM and take from it as necessary.  No second machine needed.

superboyac

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2010, 04:18:12 PM »
What I would do is this:

1) Clone your current drive to another, spare hard drive.  Make that clone bootable and remove it from the main computer.
2) Wipe current drive and install Win7.  Install cloned drive in main computer.
3) Under Win7, run that cloned drive in an XP VM and take from it as necessary.  No second machine needed.
Ah!  That's a cool solution!  I like that.  Then I can keep both without doing any dual boot stuff.  That's good stuff.

Eóin

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2010, 07:06:42 PM »
Trying to run an XP install under different hardware (i.e. a VM) than it was setup on is asking for trouble, if not impossible.

Honestly, I've dual booted windows for years and never had any trouble, thought I also never cared if the windows drive was a different letter from 'C'. It simply doesn't matter what the drive letter is apart from aesthetics.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2010, 07:21:20 PM »
FWIW- if you install Windows 7 anywhere it assumes it is on drive C: (Vista does this too - unlike windows xp which allocates new drive letters.) Drive letters are actually allocated in the registry so Windows XP will see the new install with an odd drive letter but if you boot into Windows 7 it will be on drive C: and XP will be on an odd drive - just for the duration of that session.

Set up the dual boot on a separate partition and they will both boot to drive c:

The other alternative is to do the following:

Find a Vista disk that can upgrade your Windows XP but you don't need to activate it.

Once you have Vista upgrade to Windows 7.

These upgrades aren't ideal but there is no quick way to go from XP to 7 - basically if you don't use an upgrade path you will need to reistall all of your software.

NB: One gotcha ... Windows 7 will install its 'boot' stuff on the active partition so if Windows XP is your current system partition the boot stuff will be installed there so once you are ready to make the big change you will need to clear everything off this partition except the boot stuff and then resize it and resize the Windows 7 partition to reclaim the space.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2010, 07:23:03 PM by Carol Haynes »

Darwin

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2010, 09:25:07 PM »
Damn! Carol beat me to it! That was going to be my solution, though I was going to suggest part of skwire's solution as a first step: use Acronis True Image or something similar to create an image of your XP install before you upgrade.

I did an in-place upgrade of Vista 64-bit to Windows 7 64-bit and have never regretted it (ie, there have never been any problems as a result, and I did it just over a year ago). This was with at least 200 non-MS applications installed as well.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

app103

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #13 on: October 27, 2010, 10:48:34 PM »
I would get one of these for my OS drive:

17-994-074-TS.jpg



1. Remove current XP drive and set it aside
2. Add new drive for Win7
3. Install Win7
4. Swap out Win7 drive for the XP drive when you want to go back

Not as convenient as dual booting, but it would be a whole lot easier and less risk of messing up either your XP or Win7 installations.

skwire

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #14 on: October 27, 2010, 11:18:49 PM »
Trying to run an XP install under different hardware (i.e. a VM) than it was setup on is asking for trouble, if not impossible.

I've always just run re-run the XP install in repair mode and it's worked MANY times over the years.  This XP install I'm on right now is on its third, different motherboard with nary an issue.

cmpm

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2010, 01:31:19 AM »
On my XP setup. I had drive C for XP and a Recovery Drive D.
I Used Easeus Partition manager to make C / XP half of the drive,
formated drive D and made it larger-the other half of the drive.

Installing W7 in advanced mode allowed me to install into drive D.
Running W7, it became drive C, Runnung XP it was drive C.
And the other not running operating system was drive D.

Certainly do a backup before trying.
If you don't already have a drive D to manipulate, make one.
It may work for you as it did for me.
Or because of the way my particular computer operates.
Don't know and not sure.

f0dder

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2010, 02:30:46 AM »
Trying to run an XP install under different hardware (i.e. a VM) than it was setup on is asking for trouble, if not impossible.
P2V migration actually works pretty well - it's going V2P that tends to cause trouble.

Anyway, I'm definitely in favor of imaging the old XP install, then doing a fresh Win7 install and get things working steadily while being able to use the old XP install in a VM or on a spare computer. Definitely don't get into dual-booting or upgrade installs.
- carpe noctem

Eóin

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2010, 02:53:44 AM »
I really thought that just wouldn't work, should have educated myself first I guess :-[

f0dder

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2010, 02:56:44 AM »
I really thought that just wouldn't work, should have educated myself first I guess :-[
Well, for anybody who have tried moving a system harddrive from one machine to another (doing "P2P" but without any fix-up steps) and experiencing an INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE BSOD, it's a pretty fair assumption :)

Just imaging a system and plugging that directly into a VM probably doesn't work too well, there's usually some fixup step involved.
- carpe noctem

Armando

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #19 on: October 30, 2010, 10:39:41 AM »
Some imaging software have an option to allow transferring a system image to another computer without to many problems.

But if not, it's possible to do it manually :

- http://www.donationc...49.msg61210#msg61210
- http://www.donationc...53.msg85100#msg85100


Shades

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #20 on: October 30, 2010, 01:08:31 PM »
Are you the only user on the system or do you share it with people?

Only in case that you are the only one using the PC, you could jump to use portable versions of the software you like. That way it is a plain and simple copy of one OS to another to do the trick. Yes it is that simple. Most if not all your preferences are copied as well so you already gain a lot of time by not installing and configuring your software tools.


howardb

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Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy - partition management
« Reply #21 on: November 02, 2010, 06:15:24 PM »
Sounds like you have 3 basic problems: 1) You want to run and use your XP partition, while you are preparing windows 7 to run all your software. 2) You want to install your ``tons of'' software, from XP, on windows 7 along with, I suspect, various shortcuts, batch files, menus, settings that you created in XP.  3) I suspect you want to backup your XP AND windows 7 partitions, in case anything goes wrong.

So - start with 3 - make an image backup of XP, and put  it on some external or internal backup drive. Macrium Reflect or Paragon Backup both provide free image software for this. I highly recommend you also create bootable CD that allows you to run partitioning and/or backup software, and to access your partitions. Again, Macrium or paragon provide such CDs. They either use the win PE or a linux OS to accomplish this. By the way - paragon also sells ``adaptive restore'' software that allow you to install an old windows OS on a newer PC.

Then do 1) I suspect your disk has just one C: partition. Use a partition tool, such as Easeus partition Master (its free), to resize C:,create and format a second partition on your disk, and make the new partition active. By the way, this tool will also let you hide or change the drive letters of partitions, other than the bootable C: drive.

Now install windows 7 on the new partition, which it will see as C: Then, I recommend doing an image backup of win 7. It will be invaluable to cleanly recover from any serious future OS trouble.

Your windows 7 boot menu, should now allow you to boot to either 7 or XP. Whichever one you choose, will become drive c: for that session. If there are any problems, use a free tool such as Easy BCD (http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=1) to edit the boot menu, as needed. Once setup, dual booting is quite painless.

Now you can do 2) the painful, way: Boot into 7 and slowly install all the tons of applications, shorcuts, etc. from XP to 7. I always keep all my setup files for this purpose, and there are tools that save installation info. for groups of applications, so future installs will be less painful.

If you want, you can try the shorter upgrade path from XP to vista to 7 -- on the XP partition. If it works, you simply use a partition manager to switch the former XP drive to be the active one.

If anything goes wrong, you are covered: You have a clean backup of win 7, and one of XP. And if your PC does not boot, you can boot from a CD and restore either backup, set one of the partitions as active, etc.




Armando

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #22 on: November 02, 2010, 07:19:14 PM »
I like these advices.  :up:

Daleus

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #23 on: November 03, 2010, 06:57:17 AM »
I don't have any suggestions for the transfer, beyond what has been offered here.

However, I have one if you discover software that does not run on Win7 - try Microsoft's XP Mode for Win7.

http://www.microsoft...tual-pc/default.aspx

This is a specially developed XP VM with some neat features, that I have started to use at work. We have a number of terminal programs and other assorted programs that won't run under W7.

With the XP mode VM, anything installed on the VM will drop an icon into your Win7 start menu (if it doesn't, just drop a shortcut into the "All Users" start menu). Drag it out to the desktop and when you dble click, the XP only app runs in an XP window, within W7! The VM is still there for further installation, but if you just run the app, you'll never see it. Locally mapped drives (USB etc) and network mapped drives will fall through from the host to the VM. This was a big help for our apps that need a network drive - there was no need to install the network client.

This version of the MS VM software runs much faster than the usual Virtual PC software and the best thing of all - if you use the supplied Win XP image, you DO NOT need an XP License.

Check it out.

Daleus, Curmudgeon-at-Large

Carol Haynes

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Re: Help me come up with a Windows XP-->Windows 7 transition strategy.
« Reply #24 on: November 03, 2010, 10:05:43 AM »
You beat me to it -Windows 7 XP Mode is an easy way to keep some XP apps (though don't expect to run games or graphically intensive applications in XP Mode as it will be slow and it uses an emulated graphic card so not ideal). Originally XP Mode was only available on Hyper-V (or AMD-V) CPU supported systems but Microsoft has sensibly dropped this restriction and now you can use it on any system with sufficient memory.

You do have to use Windows 7 Pro or Ultimate (if you have XP Pro you can upgrade) so although the XP image comes without paying for a license it isn't exactly free,