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OK, so if's not broken, don't fix it - but I have a yearning to try Windows 8 but keep the option to revert to Windows 7 if I am unhappy or suffer compatibility issues.
I can take advantage of the Microsoft offer to upgrade till the end of Jan for £15 - I think this means that I will "overwrite" Windows 7 with Windows 8, and that will be that; presumably it is not a full copy of W8 that I can install on a separate partition and dual boot the computer from either OS?
Am I right in think that if I want to dual boot fm W7 or W8, I would need to buy a full price separate W8 OS for about £50.
Leading on from that - if I do end up with W7 and W8 on the computer (and keep all my programs), presumably I can access them (eg, MS Office) from either W7 (as at present)or W8, depending on whichever OS I am using.
As I said, if it ain't broke ........ but I am keen to try W8 with a view to upgrading some other computers in the family, and the other users will "experiment" with W8 on my computer before making the jump from the dreaded Vista (which is starting to misbehave badly and will need some form of drastic intervention soon) - and my desktop is also a touch-screen PC.
"Leading on from that - if I do end up with W7 and W8 on the computer (and keep all my programs), presumably I can access them (eg, MS Office) from either W7 (as at present)or W8, depending on whichever OS I am using"
No, for a dual boot can't see how you would do that, each will have it's own Registry and installed programs make entries in the registry. So a program installed on W7 will not work if you boot into W8 (and vice versa) You would have to install them on both.
Taff - thanks for that; I had seen the post, but there is still some ambiguity about upgrades. It seems I can probably run W7 and W8, but technically I may be in contravention of licencing terms.
Lotvic - many thanks - useful comment, which effectively means that I will not dual boot W7 and W8, even if I can or may.
Only decision now is whether or not to upgrade at all......maybe a run to PC World to play with W8 will help me decide! Maybe stick with the devil I know.
I find a spare hard drive is the answer to tinkering with operating systems, although it does mean taking one drive out and replacing it with the other instead of a dual boot.
In your case you could (quite legally) clone your W7 drive and then use the W8 upgrade on it.
This means you would end up with one original W7 harddrive and all installed programs.
And one W8 upgraded harddrive and all installed programs.
You can quite legally use either on the one pc tower (or the one laptop) you have.
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