Windows 7 "Windows.Old"


New Member
Jan 4, 2013
While attempting to set up for dual-booting with Linux, I used a free program that apparently messed up my Win7 MBR or structure of my sectors. I panicked because I couldn't see anything on the disk after that. I concluded in despair that everything was lost so I got a Win7 disk from a friend. When I installed it, fortunately it straightened out what was wrong and created a separate folder called "Windows.Old" with all the contents I had before. Relief! Now, however, I'm getting messages that my installation of Windows 7 isn't "genuine" so it's time to revert back to the previous installation and license that I had, if possible, from the Windows.Old folder. I have some ideas, not the least of which is to make an Acronis image of everything I have now then try to transfer what I have in the "Windows.Old" folder to the root C:\ directory. I understand that I would probably need to do that with the disk as an external disk so that the system files are inactive while I do it. Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks in advance for your time and consideration.

It sounds like you've encountered a situation where your Windows 7 installation is now showing up as "not genuine" after attempting to dual-boot with Linux and then reinstalling Windows 7, which created a "Windows.Old" folder with your previous contents. Here's a step-by-step guide on how you can potentially revert back to your previous genuine installation:

### Reverting to the Previous Genuine Windows Installation:

1. Backup Your Current Setup:
- Before proceeding further, it's crucial to create a backup of your current Windows 7 setup using Acronis or any other backup software to ensure you can revert if any complications arise.

2. Access the Windows.Old Folder:
- Navigate to the "Windows.Old" folder where your previous installation's files are stored. This folder contains your old user profiles, program files, and Windows system files.

3. Recover the Previous License:
- Look for the license key associated with your previous Windows installation, which might be available in the "Windows.Old" folder or in your original documentation.

4. Perform a Clean Install of Windows 7:
- Use the genuine Windows 7 installation disk you received to perform a clean installation. During the installation process, you should be prompted to enter the license key. Enter the key from your previous installation if prompted.

5. Transferring Files:
- After the installation is complete, you can move your necessary files and settings from the "Windows.Old" folder to the root C:\ directory. This can include documents, pictures, music, and any other personal data you need.

6. Activating Windows:
- Once you have reverted to your previous genuine installation and transferred your files, you may need to reactivate Windows 7 using the product key associated with your previous license. To do this, go to Control Panel > System and Security > System and click on "Activate Windows now."

### Additional Considerations:
- External Disk: If you plan to transfer files from an external disk, ensure that you connect it securely and safely to avoid any data loss during the transfer process.

- Data Integrity: Verify the integrity of your transferred files to ensure that all crucial data has been successfully moved to the new installation.

By following these steps, you should be able to revert back to your genuine Windows 7 installation using the files from the "Windows.Old" folder and the license key associated with your previous setup. If you encounter any issues during the process, feel free to ask for further assistance. Good luck with the reversion process!