Will Windows 8.1 upgrade retain your installed software?

MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#1
Hi

While I'm somewhat undecided about how I'm going to update to Windows 8.1, I started wondering about how the update process works.

The last thing I do before I update will be to make an image of my C:\ drive, so I can experiment a little.

If I just run the update from the Windows update utility will it keep all of my installed software?

I ask because of how Windows refresh treats your installed software as if it didn't exist.

I'm leaning toward just trying the upgrade process because I can always go back and do a clean install if it doesn't work out anyway and I'd like to see it the update process does really work.

I have so much stuff installed that I'm literally looking at weeks of work to get everything back and configured again if I start from scratch.

All of my games, graphic arts software, all of my movie and sound editing programs, not to mention all of the little items like Fraps, Dropbox, Itunes, 3D Movie Maker, the list goes on and on.

Anyway if anyone knows how it will work I'm interested in knowing everything that I can before I start the process.

Mike
 


Saltgrass

Excellent Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#2
Doing the update as just an update should keep all your previous install. Assuming you choose for it to do that.

I ran the 8.1 update from within Windows using the setup.exe file on the DVD, but downloading from the store should be the same.

When you say image of C: you are referring all the partitions necessary for the system to run, such as a Recovery and/or System partition along with the OS partition?
 


davidhk129

Senior Member
#3
Depends on what you are upgrading from.
I have read an article that says one can upgrade to Win 8.1 from Win 7.
I don't know if there is different procedure or not as I have not done that.
One thing I do know is upgrading from Win 7 to Win 8.1 will wipe out all 3rd party programs.

However, I did upgrade my Win 8 Pro to Win 8.1 Pro.
When the upgrading started I was asked to choose one of the options.....
1. keep personal files and settings
2. keep nothing.
I chose option #1
Results : all my files, settings as well as 3rd party programs are retained intact, except those that are not supported by 8.1, such as Avast.
 


MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#4
Hi

Thanks for the info, when it goes live I'll give it a try and see if I can retain all my software.
I really don't want to have to redo the entire thing, unless I have to.

And I should have said that I back up all of my Windows hard drive including the supporting partitions.
All my recovery info in on another hard drive.

Mike
 


brkkab

Honorable Member
#5
Personally, I'd stay away from the upgrade install and do a clean install. Here's a good example why: Windows 7 needed either 100mbs. or 150mbs. for it's recovery partition. Windows 8 need's 3oombs or 350mbs. for it's recovery partition. That's probably why people have had issue's with 8's Refresh and Repair feature's. My guess is 8.1 will probably need a bigger system reserved partition as each new version of Windows has needed more space than the previous version. Better off doing a clean install and choosing Custom>Advanced deleting System Reserved and partition Windows is currently on and then installing 8.1 to unallocated/unreserved space (which is actually what you just deleted).
 


Sonny

Excellent Member
#6
Capture.PNG
Here is what 8.1 uses.
 


#7
My machine has a 350MB System Reserved partition, possibly due to the fact that my system uses Hybrid EFI instead of True EFI
 


Peterr

Honorable Member
#8
Depends on what you are upgrading from.
I have read an article that says one can upgrade to Win 8.1 from Win 7.
I don't know if there is different procedure or not as I have not done that.
One thing I do know is upgrading from Win 7 to Win 8.1 will wipe out all 3rd party programs.

However, I did upgrade my Win 8 Pro to Win 8.1 Pro.
When the upgrading started I was asked to choose one of the options.....
1. keep personal files and settings
2. keep nothing.
I chose option #1
Results : all my files, settings as well as 3rd party programs are retained intact, except those that are not supported by 8.1, such as Avast.
>>I am very glad you told us in advanced to choose to keep files and settings if we want to keep them. I had time to evaluate the choice and agree.
I hope when 8.1 is available, we can just be alerted, follow the prompts(I think it is through the store) then install it keeping all we had with Win 8.
Thank you
 


davidhk129

Senior Member
#9
>>I am very glad you told us in advanced to choose to keep files and settings if we want to keep them. I had time to evaluate the choice and agree.
I hope when 8.1 is available, we can just be alerted, follow the prompts(I think it is through the store) then install it keeping all we had with Win 8.
Thank you

You are welcome.
Only 8 days to go.
 


badrobot

Senior Member
#10
i've also picked up something from this thread. Thank you. I am not so excited about the update though.


Sent from my iPad using WindowsForum
 


davidhk129

Senior Member
#11
Since this thread has been revived, I might as well add something......For XP and Vista users :
MS does NOT recommend that you upgrade to Win 8.1 directly, because 8.1 does not support XP and Vista.
The correct way will be installing Win 8 first, then wait for free upgrade to Win8.1.

excerpt :
Just like Microsoft mentions on the Windows 8.1 page of the official store, “Windows 8.1 is not designed for installation on devices running Windows XP or Windows Vista,” which means that a clean install is needed if you’re willing to switch to 8.1 from these two old operating systems.
On the other hand, if you’re already running Windows 7 right now, upgrading to 8.1 is piece of cake, as all files are automatically transferred to your new copy of Windows.

In case you’re a Windows XP or Vista user, Microsoft recommends to first purchase Windows 8 and only then get the free update to 8.1 from the Store.

Source
 


davidhk129

Senior Member
#12
To Vista users :
From Vista > Win 8 > Win 8.1 is the right upgrade path to use.
I guarantee it because that is how I "transformed" my 5 yr.old Vista to Win 8.1 Pro a week (or 2 ) ago.
Of course, you must make sure the Upgrade Assistant says your machine is ready for upgrade.

You can pay less for the upgrade if you shop at eBay.
I paid less than $75 Canadian ( shipping included ) for a Win 8 Pro. The package was brand new, sealed and unopened.
The seller is a top rated seller, I won't hesitate to buy from him again.
Some may object to my statement above. Let's not sink the ship because of a few bad apples.
 


badrobot

Senior Member
#13
If anyone wants to test the Win 8.1 Enterprise Preview (do it on a separate hard drive and not on your existing OS drive), here's the TechNet Official Download site (Key is included): http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/...PRISE_EN-US_VL-IMP_CENA_X64FREV_EN-US_DV5.ISO

The Win 8.1 Enterprise Preview is free to try until Jan 2014. There is an option for direct download (no need to install the recommended download manager). The file is 3.5GB and took me 15mins to download.
 


Medico

Senior Member
#14
One caveat I will mention to everyone. Just prior to running the Upgrade install or Clean Install from DVD, ALWAYS, always make a system Image of your Win 8 installation. In this way if something bad does happen with the Win 8.1 installation you can easily get back to where you were before you started the Win 8.1 installation.

I use Acronis True Image 2013 for my Imaging needs, but there are many imaging apps that are equally as effective. Win 8 even has a built in app that many use effectively. In the latest edition of Windows Secrets newsletter, Fred Langa has a good article on using the Win 8 built in Imaging app.
 


MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#15
Hi

I ran all my anti malware and defragged the C:\ drive.
I just finished doing a complete system backup.

I went through all my installed software and removed all the stuff I don't need, (3 versions of Photoshop?).

Now I'm ready to do the upgrade.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Mike
 


Last edited:

MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#16
3:35, started the download process from the Windows Store.
Says it will tell me when the download is finished.

Mike
 


MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#17
3:55, It says it's applying changes 64%.

Mike
 


MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#18
4:05, Gathering Information, 85%.
So far so good.

Mike
 


#19
Mine took 1 hour 55 minutes but that was over my wifi....
 


MikeHawthorne

Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
#20
4:55, Done!!!

Now I'll have to check and see if everything works.
I have to say that the getting ready and setting up things took forever. LOL

Every time it restarted I thought "This is it" then it would start doing something else.

My desktop and everything looks normal, so far.

Total 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Mike
 


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