Upgrading to Windows 10 Later?

Specific Question. If I have a fully activated version of Windows 7 and want to upgrade to windows 10 further down the track can I still activate windows 10 after the cut off date?

What I mean is, I have downloaded Windows 10 and placed it on a CD for installation later on. I understand Microsoft has put a time limit of the latest time I can upgrade to Windows 10 from Windows 7 for free. If say the cut off is tomorrow (hypothetically) and I install Windows 10 on my Windows 7 PC in 1 year from now, can I activate Windows 10 then?

I'm saving my Windows 10 upgrade until the last possible moment.


Hi @dominover! Good question! I have the MCT on a flash drive. How MS will handle this is any ones guess IMHO!
I'm sure you will get more replies latter on this issue.
Welcome to the forum!
PS! Who really knows?? Here's a good read.

Microsoft will charge for Windows 10 upgrades after one-year freebie offer lapses


Honorable Member
I'd say the best way to do it, is to A: upgrade 7 to 10 now. B: Do a search and download the free Key Finder from MagicJellyBean and write down the new Windows 10 product key on a piece of paper and save it. Also, copy the key into a notepad document and save it to OneDrive. C: Go back to Windows 7 then and install Windows 10 using your Windows 10 product key and do a clean install of it.
P.S. I know from experience, Windows 10 gives you a new product key. It doesn't give you the same product key as Windows 7 or 8.1.
You can only use the Windows 7 or 8.1 product keys to upgrade to Windows 10 until July 21, 2016. After then, you need to pay for it.

Well! Here's the way I would do it. I would use a 3rd party image program like(Macrium Reflect) to create a image of your W7 OS. Then I would use the media creation tool (MCT) to upgrade to W10. Then create image of W10 OS with Macrium Reflect. (There are several free image programs you can use.) Now you have a image of W7 and a image of W10 and you can roll back and forth at your pleasure. I don't see any way that MS can stop you from doing that, but I have been wrong about these things on occasions.;) Please correct me if you think I'm wrong!
PS I really think you will like W10 if you give it a try and keep a open mind. To me it's the best of W7 and W8.1 rolled into a new OS.
We might as well get use to it because that's the way it's going to be unless we choose to use a Linux OS !:martini:


Honorable Member
The answer is no, you must upgrade by July 21, 2016 to get it free. Follow my & holdum333 steps above prior to July 21, 2016. Then go back to 7 if you wish and install 10 again when you feel like it.

The answer is no, you must upgrade by July 21, 2016 to get it free. Follow my & holdum333 steps above prior to July 21, 2016. Then go back to 7 if you wish and install 10 again when you feel like it.
;);). Please click on my signature. A back up image of your OS is the best friend you will ever have.
Thanks for your reply brkkab. My pleasure to work with you on the forum my friend @brkkab ! Team work is a good thing IMHO!

Some excellent answers, thanks.. I 'm very glad I asked this. That is what I'll do then. I'll upgrade on another pc and go from there. Cheers.


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holdum333: I just followed you on the forum.


Honorable Member
holdum333: We're all set then. I don't post much lately. I've done more over the last few months. That was only on the new pc I'm building, though. It's on hold until next month, as the new motherboard is bad.

I realize this is post is solved but I thought I would just let you all know that I've put another hard drive in my pc and set up windows 10 (upgraded from win 7). I'm probably not going to use Win10 just yet but I'm now in the process of making an image. I just wanted to know that if I get the product code for this installation and reinstall win 10 on my pc later from the Win 10 I downloaded from the Microsoft website, will I be able to activate it? Or,,, Will I need to reinstall from a system image I create from my current win10 installation? I'm not sure how this works.

Hi! If you have a system image of W10 on a external drive, you can restore to that image and every thing will be like it was the day the image was created. As long as you don't change the MB, you will be just fine. I have images of W7 and W10 on a external drive and I have switched back and forth a couple of times. I really think you will like W10.
Are you going to use the same hard drive ? That's where I'm a little confused in your reply. Are you saying you now have up graded to W10 and you're going to create a image and then go back to W7 on the same hard drive. Did you create a image of W7 before you up graded to W10?
If you did, you should be able to switch back and forth. I have done that . The product key is tied to your mother board is my understanding.
There will be different rules for retail and OEM license. Here's a good read that should clear that part up. You may get more replies latter!
Thanks for your update status!;):up:
The Ultimate Windows 10 Activation & License FAQ


Honorable Member
Once you have your product key for 10, you can use it and do a clean install of 10 on that pc at any time. Just remember that key is tied to your hardware,
No new motherboards will work with it.
New hard drive/ssd. ram or video cards should still work with it.


Honorable Member
New motherboards generally mean new cpu and new pc.


Fantastic Member
Premium Supporter
The answer is no, you must upgrade by July 21, 2016 to get it free. Follow my & holdum333 steps above prior to July 21, 2016. Then go back to 7 if you wish and install 10 again when you feel like it.
>>>To brkkab & OP: Please note the correct date should be July 29th, 2016, not July 21, 2016!! The correct date is referenced on this Microsoft page: Free upgrade to Windows 10

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