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Windows 7 Upgrade Path (with Charts)

Microsoft has just released a official chart showing the various Windows 7 upgrade options. Keep reading to see it and get my take on everything.

First off, here is the chart from Microsoft:

windows-upgrade-chart [1]
(Click to view full size)

On the Y-axis is a list of eligible previous operating systems and on the X-axis are three of the Windows 7 versions soon to be released. Green boxes indicate the ability to do an in-place upgrade which would preserve all of your files, programs,  and settings. Blue boxes indicate the need for a “clean install”. This means you will be elegable to purchase Windows 7 at the upgrade price, but you will not be able to do an in-place upgrade.

If you are shocked by the number of blue (“clean install”) boxes, don’t be. Most are there simply to illustrate that you cannot do an in-place upgrade from a 32-bit operating system to a 64-bit operating system (or vice-versa).

Here are the main things to note:

Finally, if you are wondering if your PC hardware is capable of running Windows 7, you can quickly find out by running Microsoft’s Upgrade Advisor [2].