Update Your Windows 7 Beta? It Will Be a Pain

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News Posted: Wed, Apr 8 2009 1:12 AM

Microsoft will soon (?) offer a release candidate (RC) version of Windows 7, and those are testing the product already will most likely want to move from the current beta version to the RC version. That said, it's not going to be easy.

The reason is that in real-life, the upgrade path will be from Windows Vista to Windows 7 (Microsoft has already said that XP to Windows 7 will not be an upgrade path; a fresh install will be required). Because of that, and because they want as many people testing the actual upgrade path as possible, Microsoft would prefer users downgrade to a Vista image, then upgrade to the RC.

Of course, they recognize the fact that some people have installed 7, and love it, and made it their production OS. Thus, they have a way to do an upgrade, one that they are giving to Enterprise customers, but if you don't hack a few things, the installer will run a version check and simply tell you the upgrade is not available and exit. Here is what you need to do:
  1. Download the ISO as you did previously and burn the ISO to a DVD.
  2. Copy the whole image to a storage location you wish to run the upgrade from (a bootable flash drive or a directory on any partition on the machine running the pre-release build).
  3. Browse to the sources directory.
  4. Open the file cversion.ini in a text editor like Notepad.
  5. Modify the MinClient build number to a value lower than the down-level build. For example, change 7100 to 7000 (pictured below).
  6. Save the file in place with the same name.
  7. Run setup like you would normally from this modified copy of the image and the version check will be bypassed.
For techies, this will not be a problem. I would hope those experimenting with Windows 7 are relatively technical. After all, Microsoft warned that the steps outlined above will be necessary for those who wish to move from either the beta or the RC to the released version of Windows 7 (!).

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acarzt replied on Wed, Apr 8 2009 9:21 AM

I personally haven't messed with the new Beta, but a co-worker has played with it and from what i've seen it looks just like vista and doesn't seem to be groud breaking or any different at all. It's actually pretty disappointing... still waiting on a new File System too... I don't see it happening any time soon tho. I'll continue to stick with my Windows XP... it's almost a decade old now and it's still better than all the new garbage microsoft is trying to shove down our throats.

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Devin_P replied on Wed, Apr 8 2009 11:43 AM

well at a glance it is "supposed" to look like vista. I think microsoft learned that as cool as it is to have a futuristic new interface, most people are more comfortable not being overwhelmed with everything looking differently.

In any case, the true improvements are under the hood. For the most part, 7 uses less system resources, and is snappier than even XP, with vista, there is no contest. Also, the aero features are much improved, and require less system resources, among other things. Since running it I've never once looked back to vista, or xp, even on my eee pc 7 is fantastic.

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I mean it is a beta. I am impressed with everything so far. I am going to do a clean wipe and install the RC when it comes out.

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I am going to do a clean wipe and install the RC when it comes out.
Ditto. :)

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yoda8232 replied on Tue, Apr 14 2009 9:53 AM

I downloaded Windows 7 7048 but never installed it because I heard this will come out soon.

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