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Windows 7 Anytime Upgrade

With Windows 7, Microsoft is about to make it easy to upgrade from one edition to another. Here's a quick walkthrough of the procedure, using a recent Windows 7 build.

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1 of 5 Ed Bott/ZDNet
The System Properties page shows the currently installed version (highlighted in yellow) and includes a link to "get more features with a new edition of Windows 7."
For full details, see Microsoft prepares Windows Anytime Upgrade, v2
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2 of 5 Ed Bott/ZDNet
This Windows Anytime Upgrade screen offers two options. The top link (not yet live) will allow you to purchase an upgrade key directly from Microsoft. The bottom option lets you enter an upgrade key you already purchased, presumably from a Microsoft partner.
For full details, see Microsoft prepares Windows Anytime Upgrade, v2
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3 of 5 Ed Bott/ZDNet
The upgrade key uses the same 25-chaaracter alphanumeric format as the keys used to install and activate a new copy of Windows Vista or Windows 7.
For full details, see Microsoft prepares Windows Anytime Upgrade, v2
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4 of 5 Ed Bott/ZDNet
When I tested the upgrade process using a Windows 7 Ultimate product key, the process took just under 10 minutes. I never had to supply a DVD, and I didn't have to restart at the end.
For full details, see Microsoft prepares Windows Anytime Upgrade, v2
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5 of 5 Ed Bott/ZDNet
This status screen (and a similarly upgraded System Properties page) indicate that the upgrade was successful.
For full details, see Microsoft prepares Windows Anytime Upgrade, v2

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