How to upgrade Windows XP to Windows Vista

How to upgrade Windows XP to Windows Vista
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Product Activation

If you are using Windows Vista as a intermediate upgrade step to later a version of Windows, such as Windows 7 and ultimately Windows 10, you do not need to activate Windows.

You will need to activate Windows if you intend to continue using Windows Vista beyond the 30 day trial period. Use the following instructions to activate Windows.

  1. From the Start menu, select Welcome Center. The Windows Vista Welcome Center window will be displayed.
    Windows Vista: Welcome Center

    Windows Vista: Welcome Center

  2. From the top-right corner of the window, click Show more details. The View basic information about your computer window will be displayed.
    Windows Vista: System Properties

    System Properties

  3. From the bottom of the window, click Change product key. The Change your product key for activation window will be displayed.
    Change your product key for activation

    Change your product key for activation

  4. Type your Product Key for the edition of Windows Vista that you installed, and then click Next. The User Account Control window will be displayed.
    User Account Control

    User Account Control

  5. Click Yes to allow Software Licensing to launch with elevated privileges. The Activating Windows window will be displayed.
    Activating Windows...

    Activating Windows…

    Once Windows Vista has been activated, the Activation was successful window will be displayed.

    Activation was successful

    Activation was successful

  6. Click Close. The Windows Activation window will close and the View basic information about your computer window will be updated to reflect the Windows activation status.
    Windows Vista: System Properties

    System Properties


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2 comments

  1. Vista gets stuck at Completing upgrade (55%) for over 16 hours on my laptop… finally gave up and reverted back to XP. My Desktop errors out after staying at Gathering files (0%) for 10 minutes, saying an error has occurred and update has been canceled without any other indication of what is going on… Kind of bummed I can’t upgrade in time… Going to last ditch try to fresh install Windows 7 to get the Windows 10 upgrade then hope I can re-upgrade from XP>Vista>7>10 with my upgraded 7>10 activation at some point in the future when I can figure out what the problem is.

    1. Hi Ujn,

      Sorry to hear about your XP > Vista upgrade problems – not good! The Windows 10 free upgrade is available until 29th July, so you still have another month. If you have a valid Windows 7 (or 8) key, you can actually just do a fresh install of Windows 10, skip when it asks for a key during the install, and then enter your Windows 7 key to activate Windows 10 once it is installed.

      Kind Regards,
      Chris.

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