Debuted last week for customers worldwide, the Windows Upgrade Option Program is designed to deliver customers and small businesses that buy designated PCs with premium versions of Windows Vista pre-installed free upgrades to equivalent flavors of Windows 7 once the operating system becomes available. The initiative is meant to feed consumers’ appetite for Windows 7 that could hurt Windows Vista sales and to make waiting for the next iteration of the Windows client drop pointless.

1. What is the Program Eligibility Period?

June 26, 2009 to January 31, 2010 – Only PCs preinstalled with qualifying Vista editions have to be acquired starting with June 26, but no later than January 31, 2010, in order to be eligible for a free Windows 7 upgrade through the Upgrade Option Program.

2. What are the qualifying Vista SKUs? To which Windows 7 edition will free upgrades be possible?

– Windows Vista Home Premium Upgrade free upgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade
– Windows Vista Home Premium Full free upgrade to Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade More »

If you long for the good old days of XP and still have your install CD, this step-by-step guide will help you revert to Vista’s predecessor.

These days, you have to work to find a new computer that comes with XP installed. Many PC users who upgraded their XP systems to Vista are disappointed with the newer OS’s performance and other problems. In either case, as long as you have an XP installation CD, you can kiss Vista good-bye.

“Downgrading” from Vista to XP is not as difficult as you may think, but it does entail some time-consuming operations. Many online sources claim to offer techniques for reinstalling XP without having to reformat your hard disk. Based on my research, however, deleting the Vista partition and installing XP in its place is arguably the easiest approach. Moreover, this method ensures a clean install that is uncontaminated by Vista leftovers.

Note: In certain cases, you may be able to undo an XP-to-Vista upgrade, even without an XP installation CD, by following the instructions in Microsoft article 933168. The article takes a command-line approach to the XP restoration, and also requires that you have a windows.old folder on your root drive. More »


This is a tutorial video that shows you how to perform a clean installation of Windows XP. This video is intended for new PC users.
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