This Article is from Microsoft.com/Help and Support
You’ll need to do a “clean installation.” That means you can’t upgrade an existing PC to Windows 7 RC. So if you’re using an existing PC and want to keep the information on it, you’ll need to back it up before you start.
- Turn on your computer, insert the Windows 7 RC installation disc you created in step 2 into the computer’s DVD or CD drive, and then do one of the following:
- If you want to replace your computer’s existing operating system with the Windows 7 RC, and you don’t need to adjust your disk partitions, go to step 2.
- If your computer doesn’t have an operating system installed, or you want to install the RC on another disk partition, restart your computer with the installation disc inserted in your CD or DVD drive. If you’re asked to press a key to boot from DVD or CD, press any key. If the Install Windows page appears, go to step 2.
If the Install Windows page doesn’t appear and you’re not asked to press a key to start from DVD or CD, you might have to specify that your computer uses its DVD or CD drive as the startup device. See Start Windows from a CD or DVD. After you select your DVD or CD drive as the startup device, restart your computer, and then start Windows from the installation DVD or CD as previously described.
- On the Install Windows page, follow the instructions, and then click Install now.
- On the Get important updates for installation page, we recommend getting the latest updates to help ensure a successful installation and protect your computer against security threats. You need an Internet connection to get updates.
- On the Please read the license terms page, if you accept the license terms, click I accept the license terms. (You must accept to continue the installation.)
- On the Which type of installation do you want? page, click Custom.
- On the Where do you want to install Windows? page, do one of the following:
- If you don’t want to specify a specific partition to install Windows on, or create partitions on your hard disk, click Next to begin the installation.
- If you already have another existing partition with enough free space and want to install the Windows 7 RC on that partition to create a multi boot configuration, select the partition you want to use, and then click Next to begin the installation. (Be sure to install the RC on a different partition from where your current version of Windows is installed.)
- If you want to create, extend, delete, or format a partition, click Drive options (advanced), click the option you want, and then follow the instructions. Click Next to begin the installation. (If the Drive options (advanced) option is disabled, you need to start your computer using the installation disc.)
- Follow the instructions.
Note about product keys: When you download the RC, you’ll be given a product key to use for activation. You don’t have to activate when you install the RC, but after 30 days you’ll get persistent reminders to activate. If you lost your key or have a disc without a key, just go to the Download page and start the download process. The first step is to register, and that’s where you get a product key. You won’t need to download the RC. If you have an installation disc, you can get a product key by going to the Download page and following the download process. You just need to give your Windows Live ID and register; you won’t need to download the software.