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If you are using Windows Starter, Home Basic, or Home Premium, you have the option to upgrade to Windows 7 Professional. Tech enthusiasts and small-business users will appreciate the following extra features:

In this guide, we’ll show you how to upgrade from Windows 7 Starter, Home Basic, or Home Premium to Windows 7 Professional.

Note: Windows Vista Business can be directly migrated to Windows 7 Professional. Other earlier editions of Windows (XP, 2000, Vista–Non-Business) will require a clean Windows 7 Professional installation.

How to Upgrade to Windows 7 Professional

Which version of Windows am I using?

Upgrade from Windows 7  Starter, Home Basic, or Home Premium

You have two options when upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 7 Professional:

  1. Purchase an upgrade key from a retailer
  2. Upgrade from home

Purchase an Upgrade Key from a Retailer

Most reputable retailers including Best Buy and Amazon sell upgrade keys and often run discounts. Search around for the lowest cost key as each Windows 7 Professional upgrade key unlocks the same features. A little searching will help you save a few dollars. Once you have your key:

1. Click the Start button, type upgrade, and click Windows Anytime Upgrade

2. Click Enter an upgrade key

3. Enter your upgrade key and click Next

4. Microsoft will verify your key. Once verified, click Next, and click I Accept to accept the license terms

Windows 7 will now upgrade:

Note: If you are notified that the upgrade was not successful, click Close and restart your computer to continue the upgrade process.

Upgrade from Home

Note: Windows Anytime Upgrade is only available for online purchase in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

To upgrade without going to the store or ordering a key through a third-party retailer online, you can use Windows Anytime upgrade to purchase Windows 7 Professional.

1. Click the Start button, type upgrade, and click Windows Anytime Upgrade

2. Click Go online to choose the edition of Windows 7 that’s best for you

3. Choose the edition (Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate) you want to buy and click Buy

4. Enter your billing information and follow the steps through payment, confirmation, print your receipt, and start the upgrade:

Windows 7 will now upgrade.

Upgrade from Windows Vista Business (SP1 or SP2)

Note: There is no supported upgrade path to Windows 7 Professional from other editions of Windows Vista. If you are using a different version of Vista, you will need to do a clean installation.

To upgrade from Windows Vista Business, go to a retailer or order an upgrade online. Specifically, you are looking for the

0. If you’re not on service Pack 1 or 2 of Windows Vista, open Windows Update and apply it first. Upgrades from Vista Business with no Service Pack are not supported.

Service Pack Center

1. Before upgrading to Windows 7, turn off your antivirus software

2. Browse to the purchased download installer or insert the upgrade disc or flash drive into your Vista Business PC

Hint: If you insert the Windows 7 Upgrade disc and setup does not automatically start, click the Start button, click Computer, double click on your disc drive and double-click setup.exe

2. On the Install Windows page, click Install now

3. I recommend you accept the latest updates. Click Next

4. If you agree to the license terms, click I accept and click Next

5. Click Upgrade

Note: You might see a compatibility report, which provides helpful information on Windows 7 program, hardware etc. compatibility

6. Follow the instructions to set up your account and install Windows 7 on your PC

7. Turn on your antivirus software

32 bit or 64 bit?

Note: You can’t upgrade a 32-bit installation to 64-bit. You really should be running a 64-bit OS as standard, now. If you’re not sure what 64-bit gets you: what benefits does 64-bit provide?

Still not sure which version of Windows you want to buy? Find out which version of Windows 7 is for you.

About Rich

Rich is the owner and creator of Windows Guides; he spends his time breaking things on his PC so he can write how-to guides to fix them.

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