Making The Jump

How to upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 7

These instructions will guide you to successfully upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 10 without running into issues.

Upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10

You can quickly upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 10 without having to wipe out your PC doing a clean install. You can actually do an in-place upgrade without losing your data and apps using the media creation tool. This tool is not only available for Windows 7, but for Windows 8.1 devices too.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 7 making sure you don’t run into issues during the installation.

Windows 10 minimum hardware requirements

  • Processor: 1GHz or faster processor or SoC
  • RAM: 1GB for 32-bit or 2GB for 64-bit
  • Hard disk space: 16 GB for 32-bit OS 20GB for 64-bit OS
  • Graphics Card: DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver
  • Display: 1024×600

To successfully upgrade to Windows 10, you’ll also need to be running the latest version of your current OS, in this case “Windows 7 Service Pack 1”. If you don’t have this update already installed, you can download it here.

Quick Tip: You can check which version of Windows you’re running by opening the Run command and typing winver.

It should be noted that to upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 10, you’ll need a valid Windows 10 product key, as you can’t any longer use a Windows 7 product key. If you try, you’ll get a “This product key didn’t work. Please check it and try again, or try a different key” message.

How to create a full backup of Windows 7

Although, Microsoft has been improving the upgrade process with Windows 10, there are always chances that the upgrade will fail, and to avoid any problems, you should make sure to have a full backup of your system that you can use to roll back if anything happens. Luckily, Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 come with the System Image Backup tool to create a backup of your entire computer.

How to upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 10

Before starting the upgrade process, it’s recommended that you uninstall any software, such as antivirus, security software, or old third-party applications that may prevent you from successfully upgrading to Windows 10.

You should also disconnect any hardware connected to your computer, including printer, phone, camera, external hard drive, and other USB peripherals. Sometimes this can be the reason why your system fails during the upgrade.

  1. Download the media creation tool from the Microsoft support website.

    Quick Tip: If you’re an older version of Internet Explorer, you probably won’t be able to access the Microsoft download website. If this is your case, you’ll need to use another web browser like Google Chrome.

     Download Windows 10 from Microsoft
    Download Windows 10 from Microsoft
  2. Double-click the MediaCreationTool.exe to launch the Windows 10 setup wizard.

  3. Click Accept to the licensing agreement.

  4. Select the Upgrade this PC now option to download the files and begin the upgrade and click Next.

    Media Creation Tool, Upgrade this PC now option
    Media Creation Tool, Upgrade this PC now option
  5. Enter a valid Windows 10 product key for the edition you’re trying to upgrade and click Next.

    Enter Windows 10 product key
    Enter Windows 10 product key
  6. Click Accept to the licensing agreement again.

    Windows 10 upgrade agreement
    Windows 10 upgrade agreement
  7. Select the Keep personal files and apps option. Alternatively, you can click the Change what to keep link if you want upgrade without preserving your files and apps.

    Keep personal files and apps upgrading to Windows 10
    Keep personal files and apps upgrading to Windows 10
  8. Click Install to begin the process.

After the installation completes, you’ll need to go through the easy out-of-box-experience (OOBE) to finish setting up Windows 10 with your desire configuration. And then you’ll once again see your familiar desktop and every new feature included with Windows 10.

Additionally, make sure to use Device Manager to check that every piece of hardware is installed correctly on your system, reinstall your antivirus, and any other software you uninstall before the upgrade.