Windows 10 Home > Windows 7 Pro > Windows 10 Pro


Distinguished Member

I got a new PC with Windows 10 Home. I already have a retail version of Windows 7 Pro so I clean installed that over 10 Home, then did an upgrade to 10 expecting to get Pro, but I got Home again, even though I upgraded from 7 Pro.

That seems wrong. How do I clear the hardware ID registered with Microsoft that forces 10 Home?

Seems a bit silly to have to pay £99 to upgrade to Pro when I already have 7 Pro! Can I get a 10 Pro key by giving my 7 Pro key without having to pay again?



I'm not sure about going from what is presumably pre installed 10 Home on a new computer to 7 Pro. Presumably that had hidden volumes or drives etc and I have never quite trusted 'clean installs' of any retail Windows I have installed in the past on top of what amounts to a current OEM installation.

If I have had anything I want on the computer I save it to an external drive and then format the computer hard drive. Then install the retail version and then I would consider I have a machine with retail Windows.

Then look for the upgrade to 10 Pro - as long as you are sure you have retail 7 Pro and not say Enterprise or OEM discs.

If you are at all invested in the new machine yet and doing it again is a pain maybe consider taking the upgrade fee hit from the 10 Home that is up and running. I would have a go with a format and what I call a 'proper' clean install personally though :)


Distinguished Member
There's a service pack 'threshold' due which afterwards means you could install 10 Pro and give your 7 Pro key to activate as opposed to the current system of your existing key being used by Microsoft for the basis of your in place upgrade.


Established Member
The iso from the media creation tool is the new threshold version - not sure whether using previous keys made it into the release though?


Distinguished Member
There is a generic (yes, legit) Windows 10 Pro key. When used, it enables Pro features but does not activate Windows - you have to also provide a valid Pro key from either Windows 7 or 8. You can't just provide a 7/8 Pro key to the Home Edition of Windows 10.

The installation media looks for an embedded key in the BIOS/firmware and if found, you will get that version installed when doing clean installs. You can override this behavior by providing the generic 10 Pro key in a PID.txt file on the installation media.

If you have a previously activated 10 Pro install, the generic Pro key will also auto activate using digital entitlement (based on your 7/8 Pro key being used for the first activation).


Since the machine came with 10 Home on it I would still get a clean hard drive and install the legit Pro 7. As long as that is a full retail version it will give the 10 upgrade and give you Pro. I had 7 Professional via the home/work program thingy for AU$15 and wiped a machine with OEM 7 to install it clean. Then took the 8 and then 8.1 free upgrades. Then 10 came along and upgrade was to Pro. When installing my own Pro versions I have always formatted and wiped the hard drive and installed to that. I installed my first version Win 95 on three machines over 12 years and the only hassle I had was MS getting upset that I wasn't buying a new OS:) had to phone them to allow the valid full retail key to be activated but they did it no worries. Oh and the updates took a while each time - although I had service picks on hand to speed it up :)


Distinguished Member
Since the machine came with 10 Home on it I would still get a clean hard drive and install the legit Pro 7

Er, I did do a clean install of 7 Pro.

Did you even read my second paragraph?

If there is an embedded product key in the BIOS no matter what version you're upgrading from, the embedded key will be used to determine the version that gets installed. The embedded product key started from Windows 8 (hence why Windows 8 machines don't have a COA label displaying the product key).

You can override the check for an embedded key by using the PID.txt file on the installation media.

Your upgrades to 8 then 8.1 then 10 worked OK because it was originally a Windows 7 machine which didn't have an embedded Windows 8 (or 10) product key.

Read posts #4 and #5 here: Win 10 with embedded keys - Windows 10 Forums


I read clean install and I take that as being the option that comes up in a Windows installation - I do read all of the posts :) All I said was I have never used that, preferring to do the formatting etc manually.

I had forgotten about the MS infection of the BIOS - I would hope I could flash new BIOS and get rid of that if I wanted to - I'll have a read of the thread :)

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