Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.
Many XP machines have enough power to safely run Windows 7, but there is no realistic 'upgrade' or 'conversion' path.
Our first question today begins with someone submitting a fairly lengthy Windows 7 upgrade advisory report. It indicates that the machine is currently running Windows XP; it has a 2.4 gHz processor; it has 1.5 GB of RAM, and then it goes on to indicate the custom installation required etc, etc.
The person at the very bottom of this asks, "Can I convert this XP to Windows 7?"
In this excerpt from Answercast #16, I look at running Windows 7 on an older XP machine and the steps needed to get there.
The reason I'm pulling this question out and answering it here is because of the terminology.
First of all, that basic machine is certainly capable of running Windows 7. 1.5 GB of RAM is a little on the low side, but I have machines with that little RAM running Windows 7 just fine.
So the machine - not a problem. It's the word "convert" that has me concerned.
In order to move any computer from Windows XP to Windows 7, the correct approach is:
There is no upgrade ... from scratch.
There is one alternative approach that I really, really don't recommend. It can allow you to upgrade, but the results are often less than stable. It can also cost you a little bit more money:
The money is, of course, that you need to find yourself a copy of Windows Vista. The stability problem is that you're going through two levels of upgrade without really spending a lot of time ironing out any problems that may have happened in the middle.
Upgrades are always a little shaky. In fact, whenever you move from one operating system to another (Windows XP to Vista, or even Vista to Windows 7), I actually recommend that you take that as an opportunity to do a complete reformat and reinstall anyway.
The most stable machines are those that have had the operating system installed from scratch, not an upgrade.
So, that's my recommendation.
It sounds like you've got a machine to do this on. You simply need to be prepared to back up, reformat, and reinstall Windows 7 from scratch.
Next from Answercast #16 - Should I uninstall my old driver before installing an upgrade version?