Bootcamp -Windows 8 upgrade over existing Win7

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by Brenster, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. Brenster macrumors 6502a

    Jul 7, 2008
    Having used the various Windows 8 previews via Parallels 7 virtual machines over the past few months, I'm now looking to replace my Win7 boot camp partition with the final general availability version.

    Retail wise only upgrade versions are available, not full. I know System Builder (aka OEM) versions are available, but not at retail. And not at the rather keen prices Microsoft are doing for the upgrade versions (£24.99 GBP via download).

    I know I can technically use a Win8 Pro upgrade disk to do an in place upgrade over the Win7 installation but I've no idea how the current Bootcamp drivers will behave under 8, and the method to find out is a one way street. I could clone the partition to an external drive and restore if needs be, but I'd rather have some confidence that this will work before laying out the cash.

    For the record I'm running a late 2011 15" MBP, 2.2GHz Core i7, 750GB HDD, 8GB RAM w/Mountain Lion. Bootcamp is 250GB partition running a full (not upgrade) version of Win7 Home Premium.

    The Microsoft Windows 8 Upgrade Advisor suggests there is an issue with the lack of hardware/firmware to support secure boot and also with the Catalyst drivers installer (not the drivers themselves, which is nice).

    Alternatively if anyone knows of a process whereby I can use my existing Win7 bootcamp partition as a qualifying install of Win7 to then clean install Win 8 Upgrade to a Parallels virtual machine....
  2. 4JNA macrumors 68000


    Feb 8, 2006
    looking for trash files
    haven't tried yet myself, but will be in the next couple days using the clone/backup and then install trick as above. i've got 7 pro, upgrade disk for 8 pro. after the smoke clears i'll post up anything useful i find out.

    in the meantime, might want to have a look at the post from Parallels regarding upgrades. they are using lots of big scary words, so it must be serious... :rolleyes:
  3. Brenster thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 7, 2008
    The Parallels warning is for those upgrading to Win8 from an earlier version of Windows within an existing virtual machine, as opposed to a clean install into a new VM. Certainly I've had no issues running Win8 RTM Enterprise Evaluation in Parallels 7.

    According to various sources, including Winsupersite it is possible to do a clean install into a raw machine (VM and physical) using the Win8 Pro Upgrade ISO obtained via the Microsoft store. ie You can use the downloaded ISO with your product key and the media will act like the OEM/System Builder version rather than the retail upgrade DVD.

    For £24.99 UKP I've taken the risk. I'm not sure whether to go for a Boot Camp install (Pro: 'On the metal' installation therefore top performance Con: No horizontal two finger trackpad swiping. Bit of a downer in Win8) or install to a Parallels VM and if it work, close down boot camp and allocate the freed up space to the VM disc image.

    Tending towards the latter at the mo: I no longer use my machine for any sort of gaming, and performance under Parallels is easily good enough for all other uses.

    Will post again when I find out if the downloadable ISO can be used as direct clean install media or not.
  4. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    I did a upgrade last night on my Mac Pro from BootCamp Win7 on a SSD to Win8 with retail upgrade package. Not sure I like Win8, but the upgrade did go smoothly (and slowly) and it seems to be working correctly. I also created a Fusion Virtual Machine from the BootCamp install and after having to call and reauthorize, it too seems to be working normally.

    Good luck with your install...


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