Win8.1 down to Win7

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Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Wed Jan 22, 2014 12:09 pm

My daughter got a laptop for Christmas, it is an HP and had Win8 pre-loaded. I upgraded to Win8.1....and she has decided that she doesn't like Win8 OR Win8.1

She now wants me to put Win7 on it, but after looking at disk management, I am not familiar with all the different partitions. I took a screenie to show what the disk management table now looks like:

disk management screen Win8.1.JPG
This is what it looks like after upgrading from Win8>>>Win8.1


I would rather not mess with the original factory recovery partition (funny that it shows two D drives, but from googling I see that it happens after upgrading to Win8.1) so that in an extreme case I can take it back to factory defaults. However, with all the other partitions that HP/Windows has on there too I'm not sure what putting a Win7 install disk would do to the hard drive, ie: which partitions it would erase (or keep) and want to install to. I did make a 6-DVD set of Recovery DVDs with HP's utility so I would hope if the entire drive had to be wiped to start over to defaults then the proper partitions would be recreated to make it look like it did when I unboxed it.

Am I opening a can of worms by just booting to a Win7 OEM install DVD and letting it go from there, telling it to install to the C drive? Will it leave the existing "D: recovery" drive untouched so I can do the factory reset from the bios prompt? Will that be the recovery from the original Win8 from the factory, or somehow overwritten with the "D:recovery" from the Win8.1 upgrade?

I've only fresh installed on clean drives, never had to deal with all these extra partitions (ie: 400MB recovery, 260MB EFI System Partition, 350MB recovery, then 25.66GB D:recovery partition).

Device Manager for the HDD shows under Volume info that the partition style is GUID Partition Table (GPT) with unallocated space of 2MB and Reserved space of 128MB if that matters.

Thanks for your help!
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby bubba » Wed Jan 22, 2014 1:50 pm

Googled around, you're not the only one asking this...

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/For ... proinstall


The front 400mb partition ??
Think the EFI partition is due to Win8(.1) needing it for recovery.
The second 350mb recovery partition ??
The one labeled "recovery" that is the HP recovery partition, accessible only by booting to it, for some reason they don't hide them anymore.
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Wed Jan 22, 2014 4:52 pm

Since she wants me to install Win 7 anyway, I may just have to do a factory reset, let it do its thing back to Win8, then go from there. It should at least take it back down to 3 or 4 partitions from the 6 it shows now :roll: I've only wasted 3 days messing with all the updates and tweaks, it could have been worse :P

I think she likes Win7 more because it is what is on her schools computers (FtZumwalt) so she feels comfortable with it. She had no problems adjusting from WinXP to Win7.

Maybe by the time they finally get all the bugs out of 8/8.1 I'll have access to a decent 8.x OEM install disk without bloatware. and she'll want to go back up to 8. I myself have finally gotten used to Win7, I'm only about 6 years behind everyone else :lol: .
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby sgkean » Thu Jan 23, 2014 7:46 am

Leave her on Win 8.1 and install something like Start8. Gives the (few) advantages to 8.1 but with the classic start menu and boot to desktop. I think the only time I've ever seen the new UI is for the pdf reader, but that's because I haven't installed acrobat reader lol
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:54 am

I have Classic Shell 4.0.4 on it right now and that doesn't seem too bad to me, it boots straight to desktop and gives a Win7-like Start menu (BIG plus is that it is free). I have to research some more tweaks to make it less Win8.1-like, but I'm gonna make her give this fresh load a trial run. I did the minimized factory reset last night so hopefully the bloatware is gone, Norton didn't load up and there is no "Office 365" trial so that right there is a good sign. Looks like another full day of updates to get it back up to current, then I'll have to decide whether to upgrade to 8.1 again.


*glass bottles clinking* "KK...it's time to plaaaa-aaayyyy..."


edit: Damn, another day of the kids home due to sub-zero temps. So much for getting anything done (without her looking over my shoulder every 30 minutes to see if she can have it back yet).
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby bubba » Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:25 am

Its it done yet?...... now?...... how about now?...... DAAAAAaaaaddddduuuhhhh it is done yet?

:lol: joys of parenthood
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:34 am

Actually she has been pretty patient since we "officially" unboxed it Saturday morning and I have been playing around with it ever since. She got to use it to surf internet a bit one night, but she really wants to try it out with her Wacom Bamboo Capture tablet and mouse (doesn't like trackpad yet) and also to see her small desk without the desktop PC, monitor, keyboard, and speakers on top of it. My biggest fear with this lappie is that when she wants to bring it in to the Living Room to use, she will be plugging and unplugging her tablet and I don't know how sturdy the USB ports will be for multiple pluggings/unpluggings. I thought of haveing her leave just a cord in, but I fear that anything in the USB slots while it is being carried and gets bumped will break a slot.
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby sgkean » Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:53 am

IMO The biggest problem with consumer laptops is the power connector, they're designed so flimsy. Make sure she knows not to bend/twist the cable when she's away from her desk, keep the cord straight out and no tension on it. Usually the USB ports are fine as long as things aren't plugged in while moving or sitting on a lap (tension on device/port) for exactly as you said, getting bumped.

There are many options for the Win7 Start menu, I'm just familar with Start8. Clean up the modern UI screen crap (News/Sports/Maps/Food/etc), increase the size of Desktop icon (in 8.1). If she doesn't like the various "charms" bars, those can be disabled as well in 8.1. I'd make her get used to those, who knows if they'll stay in Win9.
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:39 am

I see your point about the power connector (this one is a 90-degree one), I think she will be told to only use it when sitting at a desk or table, if she wants to use it on her lap, etc. she will have to use it on battery power.
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby sgkean » Thu Jan 23, 2014 1:04 pm

That's what I've instructed the kids at my place, and my fiance uses a laptop desk in the living room.
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Thu Jan 23, 2014 2:47 pm

hmmmm laptop desk. You have just given me a great idea for her March birthday present, she can sit/lie in bed and have it next to her. I already have instructed her she can't have it sitting directly on the bed itself as that would block the air vents.

+1 !
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby sgkean » Thu Jan 23, 2014 6:17 pm

Yup, anything cushiony is bad for laptops...blocking vents (side and bottom) and possibly putting tension on the various connectors... I told them after they got their last laptop, if something happens that I can point to that then they're on their own. hehehehe they've all been very careful not to use in bed or on lap with power cable LOL
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby viv_smith » Mon Feb 24, 2014 6:38 am

regarding you first question...I think it is not a good idea to go down to Win7, because you might have some driver issues...
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Re: Win8.1 down to Win7

Postby Kaos Kid » Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:19 am

Nah, she's gotten used to Classic Shell so it is now a non-issue. She never has to go to the Metro screen and I have the few programs she uses (like her browser, graphics programs and Office) pinned to the taskbar so she's fine with it.
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