Technology with attitude

Downgrading to Windows 7 From Windows 8


Unfortunately for Microsoft, it has become pretty evident that the vast majority of their customers are not fans of the new Windows 8.

Why? It probably has something to do with the software being designed for touchscreen computers, while most people are running it on non-touchscreen computers. Yes, it is pretty and interactive, but it is simply not suited to use with a mouse alone. So, what can you do? That shiny new computer that you purchased came pre-loaded with Windows 8. Is there any going back?

Of course! Let’s break down the steps that you will need to take to downgrade your current Windows 8 software to a more usable and familiar Windows 7.

Learn About Your Downgrade Rights

Luckily for you, Microsoft decided to bestow ‘downgrade rights’ on most of their Windows 8 customers. If you are one of the people who have downgrade rights, then congratulations! Your life just got way easier. If your system came with downgrade rights, you will be able to install Windows 7 on top of Windows 8 without having to reformat your computer or lose and saved information. All you will need to do this is a Windows 7 disk and key.

If You Don’t Have Downgrade Rights

It is possible that you may have a system that has no downgrade rights. If this is the case, then things will be a little more difficult. While it is still completely doable to downgrade to 7 from Windows 8, it’s just going to be a little more time consuming. Here is what you need to do:

  • Create a bootable disk
  • Back up and files that are important that you want to save
  • Open up the device manager on your computer and make sure you have model numbers and manufacturers of the “pointing device,” the “network adapter” and the “display adaptor.”
  • Boot from the Windows 7 installation Disk
  • Activate the new Windows 7 by phone
  • Follow the on screen prompts on the installation wizard
  • Manually install all drivers and necessary applications
  • Restart the computer
  • Reinstall all of your personal files

It is important to remember that your computer manufacturer may void any warranty that you may have had with them, if you downgrade. Legally, they are not forced to recognize the downgrade and if problems occur, you may be out of luck if you try to have them help you fix it.

Microsoft, however, is usually pretty good about providing phone support for those who choose to downgrade. If you run into any issues with the installation or repartitioning of your hard drive, give them a call. They stand behind their products, and will likely help talk you through any issues.

It is extremely important to remember that, if you do not have downgrade rights, that you will lose everything saved on your computer. It is advised that you transfer everything to an external hard drive while the downgrade is taking place, to avoid losing important information. This is a relatively easy process and you will be happy later when you still have all of your files.

In all, downgrading from Windows 8 to Windows 7 doesn’t have to be a nightmare. If you have downgrade rights, the process will be simple and painless. If you don’t, downgrading will be more difficult, but still doable. Be sure to back up all files and follow the on screen prompts to avoid running into any critical issues, and as always, don’t hesitate to call Microsoft with any problems you may encounter.