You can download the official Windows 7 ISOs, (you still need to purchase a valid license), and use to install on a machine, direct from Digital River.Official Windows 7 SP1 ISOs
You can use the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool
to create a bootable flash drive of the ISO to install with.
Note that unless you install Windows 7 with a valid license it will install into trial mode in which you have 30 days to try it out. This can be rearmed
a total of 3 times to give you a trial period of 120 days after which it requires that you register it with a valid license.
The eicfg removal utility
will allow you to install all retail versions of Windows 7 using the one ISO, (within the same architecture naturally), this includes Starter, Home Premium, Professional, and Ultimate. What you choose to install will need a matching license if you want to keep using that version after the trial period ends.
Depending on the existing netbook configuration, I would recommend upgrading the RAM to the maximum 2GB, (1.5GB for some early netbooks, eg. Acer ZG5 chassis).
Re. the installed software, depending on what it is you may have some success in using a license backup program to discover the serial/license, eg. License Crawler
. Otherwise, most software keeps its serial/license info either in the registry, (which means you can export the relevant keys), or a file under the program directory, %USERDATA%, or %PROGRAMDATA%, (which means you can just save it) - used to be the way you were able to reinstall GAOTD programs.
As for the installers for the programs, you can usually find them somewhere on the net or the company typically keeps previous versions, (sometimes on its ftp servers), so a polite email may help - especially if you can produce a valid license.
And like Ath, I'd recommend only a clean install of Win7 especially onto something like a netbook with its limited resources.
Or if you're feeling adventurous PickMeApp
claims to be able to transfer programs between XP and Windows 7 - you have to register to get the download links. Otherwise you can try the light version, PickMeAppLight
, without registering.
Needless to say, as per mouser, backup the system before trying - and I'll add, backup twice to two different storage devices and
test the backups.