Format & Install

Format & Install of XP

I have Dell Laptop, XP SP2 CD & Programs & Drivers CD. I have lost the serial key sticker. I guess serial key can be find by serial key finder. Currenly the system is updated to SP3. I guess serial key doesn’t change with the service pack so I can find the serial key with a serial key finder & use it, right?

Format & Install of WIN 7 64 with an Upgrade CD

I have WIN Vista 64 Home Premium. Got a free WIN 7 64 Home Premium Upgrade CD.

Microsoft says that Upgrade CD is not for fresh install i.e format & install. So I have to Upgrade 7 over Vista. I can choose Custom Install to do a clean install of 7. But I guess this is not like format & install, right?
BUT Microsoft also mentions that to do a fresh install i.e format & install with an Upgrade CD one must choose the option Custom Install, then Advanced & then Format. So I am confused here. This option of format & install can be done? The reason I want to do format & install coz the system was hit by 3-4 malwares & Security Tool Fake AV. Though I cleaned the system with various softwares but want to do a fresh install. I also dont have Vista Installation & Drivers CD. This is an HP Laptop.

Currently the system has 3 Drives. C, D & E. D is for Recovery Image, E for CD/DVD & C is the main Drive. The system has 500 GB HardDisk. In a fresh install of WIN 7, I want to allocate 100 GB to an additional Drive for my persoanal stuffs. How can I create an additional Drive F? I have to create this additional Drive during or after Win 7 install? I have never done format & install so all these questions.


Or use SIW which can retrieve it as well. SIW is a legit system analysis program. I would use that rather then key finder of which you may find infected versions.

I cannot comment on the other things.

Thanxx for the valuable info & help buddy.


If you want to create a new partition you can use Easeus Partition Manager Free. I have used the tool with success in the past.

Since making a new partition is a big operation I suggest to run a chkdks /f after making the new partition.

Anyone any info with the WIN 7 64 Fresh Install.


Found an answer in Microsoft Site

If you purchase the full version of Windows 7, you can format your hard drive, and then install Windows 7. If you purchase the upgrade version of Windows 7 and want to format your hard drive, you’ll need to start (or boot) your computer from the Windows 7 installation disc or a USB flash drive, and then perform a custom installation. You can click Drive options (advanced), and then format your hard drive. Don’t use a program from another software manufacturer to format your hard drive before installing Windows 7. If you are using upgrade media and format the drive before starting the installation process, you won’t be able to use the upgrade product key to activate Windows 7.

I guess the Purchased Upgrade Version & Free Upgrade Version from HP would be the same, right? And this applies to HP Free Upgrade Version too, right?


Finally in couple of days I am going to format & install win 7 64 with upgrade disc.

Final few queries.

HP has given 2 disc. Win 7 upgrade & Upgrade assistant (programs & drivers)

Manual says-

Step 1 - Put upgrade assistant disc & it will update bios & then ask for win 7 disc.

2- Put Win 7 Disc & perform upgrade

3- Again put upgrade assistant disc which will update the drivers.

Also mentions custom i.e clean install can be done.

My confusion is

If plan for custom install, should I perform step 1? (is it required)

After step 2, win 7 will be a fresh install & not an upgrade so can I use the upgrade assistant disc for drivers or not i.e step 3? (coz it is an upgrade assistant)


If HP are recommending tp update the BIOS when you are upgrading, I would still perform this during a clean install.

Re. step 3, yes, you still use the Driver Assistant disk to install the required drivers.

Ewen :slight_smile:

P.S. Using an upgrade disk to perform a clean install works. Just follow the instructions given on the Microsoft site.

I had vista -64 installed when I got my desktop.
I upgraded it to windows 7 64-bit.

First I copied my personal files (pictures, documents …) and then formated my C drive ; D drive I have left as it was.

The text in my upgrade disk is :

Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade Media
For Use Only as an Upgrade to Qualifying HP Windows 7 Upgrade option PC
Windows 7
This disk contains 64-bit software only.

I did not use The HP Upgrade Assistant disk (HP Pavillion PC / Compaq Presario PC)

When install asked serial key I gave the product key that is in the sticker
on the backside of the DVD paper cover.

After that was windows product activation and normal windows update.

If I want to install/update drivers or software I use the HP Software & Driver Downloads page.
For example CyberLink DVD Suite Application Update for Windows 7 will install that program and I do not need the upgrade assistant DVD.

I hope this helps. :slight_smile:

Thanxx for the info. I have read all the instructions in Microsoft site, various forums & watched a lot of videos.


Exactly this is my situation i.e Win Vista 64 installed, C Drive, D Drive for Recovery Manager & E for DVD/CD.

But what I want to do is?

The HardDisk is 470GB. I want to do format & install, create partition C for system & D for all my stuffs during install, if possible & recommended. How much should I allocate for each drive? What you guys suggest?

I think I should run Upgrade Assistant disc for drivers updates as it will be system specific & easy for me, right? By the way I have downloaded sp50483 from HP.

So during install I will be shown all the drive i.e C,D & E, & I can format all the drives & partition there, right?

Should I make Recovery Disc of Vista? I dont have any CD’s for Vista. Its app. 13GB so how much time will it take?

Recommended or Important Updates, what you guys suggest?

I think I will activate after install.

And I think there should be no internet connection if I am using Upgrade Assistant for drivers updates coz upgrade assistant & windows update can corrupt the updating process trying to install same drivers, m I right?

The file I downloaded for drivers from HP will also run automatically like Upgrade Assistant or I will have to select the drivers for my system to install? I suppose Upgrade Assistant will install all the drivers automatically for me, right?


edit-can i just install win7 and update windows and it will find and install necessary drivers. I guess hp drivers & programs cd will also install craps.

anyone here plzz

Windows 7 has a lot of drivers by default. Your computer will work but may be not at its full potential. You can go online or use Windows Updates to get drivers. Only if you have a fairly recent NIC you may need to use a CD for its drivers. But since this computer seems a couple of years old I expect it to be ready to go online.

Thanxx replying. As I mentioned I am going to partition the drive as C for system & D for my stuff. The harddisk is 470 GB, how much you suggest, how much will be good for C drive so that the system functions smooth.


In my set up I have 50 GB for Windows 7 only. I have separate partitions for programs and data. I have 21,7 GB of free space on my system partition. If you want to install programs on your system partition take another 10 GB.

Don’t despair about partition sizes. When needed use the freeware version of Easeus Partition Manager to change partition sizes. Before and after using EPM let checkdisk check the partitions and be good to go.

OK I installed WIN 7 as per HP Manual but did a clean install.

i.e first Upgrade Assistant Disc - It checked the system if its ready for WIN 7 & said passed & then it asked for backup & I skipped this as I had already backed up & then it updated Bios & restarted the system.

After restart a message was on the screen, now remove this disc & put WIN 7 Installation Disc.

In the setup I selected Custom Install but there was only 1 option Load Driver, no other option & no advanced option. But down it stated that to partition & format start the disc from the boot.

I said ok its a clean install so I will continue. Everything went fine.

Lastly I inserted Upgrade Assistant to update drivers & programs & everything completed successfully.

Activated Windows Successfully.

Removed the previous installation with Disc Cleanup - Clean System Files.

But when I opened Computer I was shocked to see many of the previous installation files & folders on C drive. The C drive is full with 90 GB. How did this happened? I had done backup on external drive & did a clean install.


Typically, when you ‘upgrade’ a previous version of Windows to Windows 7, depending on the existing installation, you have one of two options, an ‘in-place upgrade’ or a ‘clean installation’.

With an ‘in-place upgrade’, the existing installation is moved to a folder called C:\Windows.old and Windows 7 is installed a usual. With a clean installation, you have the option to partition and format the drive before installation.

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I am planning to do a reinstall the same way I mentioned in my previous post but the part where it mentions down that to format & partition start the disc from the boot I plan to power off the system & start the disc from the boot to format & partition. Can I do this or it can create a prob? And I also hope windows activation will not be a prob & will activate successfully this time too.


There’s lot’s of information around the Internet on how to achieve your goal. Here’s a starting point:

How To: Use Your Windows 7 Upgrade Disk On a Fresh PC

Can I reinstall Win 7 over Win 7 or I will have to install Vista again?

The Vista Recovery Disc created from the system can be used to fresh install on other system or new harddrive or not?