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Activation key mismatch - Professional vs Ultimate G550 XP upgrade to Win 7

Error messages, Upgrading to Windows 7

Question

 

G550 arrived preloaded with the XP downgrade.  I inserted the Win 7 professional upgrade disk and the install started but at the end of the process the system indicates that Windows Ultimate is installed and the key on the COA doesn't work to activate.  What is going on?

Answer

 

This Notice refers to 2958-A5U and 2958-A4U models of the Lenovo G550 notebook PC’s only.

 

The 2958-A5U and 2958-A4U G550 systems ship preloaded with Windows XP Professional, and include a Windows 7 Professional upgrade disk. 

 

Issue: When upgrading from Windows XP Professional to Windows 7, some users have been unable to successfully complete the upgrade.  The most commonly reported failure point is when the customer is asked to insert a Certificate of Authenticity (COA) key. The Microsoft Upgrade process for Win XP to Win7 requires the upgrade to be executed from a ‘cold boot’. If the Windows 7 DVD is inserted while the system is running, the installation process will auto run. However, at the end of the installation process, the system will ask for a 25-key Certificate of Authenticity (COA). The Win7 upgrade process will not successfully finish the installation using this method. The installation DVD must be inserted while the machine is powered off and not running.

 

When upgrading from Windows XP Professional to Windows 7, Microsoft advises that this process be done via a custom ‘clean’ installation.  Per Microsoft.com; "A custom (clean) installation erases the contents of your PC's hard drive. Your files, settings, and programs will not be transferred to Windows 7".  The clean install will remove any pre-loaded software applications, including VeriFace, One Key Recovery, and other applications that were installed by Lenovo or the user. 

 

 

Customers should review the following information prior to performing the Windows 7 Professional upgrade.

The Windows 7 installation procedure provides a clean installation of Windows 7 Professional edition. During this process, all contents of the C: drive including all applications, files, programs and user data will be archived in the Windows.old folder.  The data should be available for access, but the applications and programs will not run, and Windows 7 appropriate versions will need to be installed. Lenovo STRONGLY recommends that external backups or all user data are made prior to initiating the upgrade in order to prevent permanent data loss.

 

Correct Windows 7 Upgrade Procedure:

1) Power off system

2) Insert Windows 7 disk in the DVD drive

3) Power on system and press F12 to access the boot order menu

4) Select the option to start from the DVD / Optical drive

5) Follow the on screen directions as Windows 7 installs

6) Remove the DVD at the end of the process and reboot to Windows 7

 

 

Windows 7 has native drivers that will fully support most of the hardware on Lenovo G550 systems.  In order to maximize the functionality of the Trackpad and the Power Management system, the appropriate Lenovo drivers must be installed. The most current Lenovo Windows 7 drivers and applications are available for download here. Please check this site periodically for updates. 

 

Recovering to Windows XP by using One Key Recovery:

The One Key Recovery feature can restore the factory XP downgrade preload at any time, but will erase all other data.

 

Important: All user data should be saved prior to implementing the following procedure

 

1) Power off the system

2) Press the recovery button (small round button next to the power button)

3) System will start and OKR (one key recovery) application will load

4) Select System Recovery from the menu

5) Select option to Restore to factory default 

6) Click “Start” button to recover your system partition