jim lin

Level 8
i found a nice article on ghacks for safe downloads of Windows that can be used for reinstalling or testing in a virtual machine since some have 30days without registration

Windows downloads for all operating systems (Vista,Windows 7,Windows 8.1,Windows 10 technical preview)

by Martin Brinkmann over on ghacks.net

Most Windows PCs ship without installation disc or any other form of physical product that you can use to re-install the system. While you do get options to create recovery discs, it is not the same thing.

The same is true when you purchase upgrades online from Microsoft. You don't get a disc anymore unless you purchase it directly, and even if you do, you will notice that some versions of the operating system are not available as physical media.

It is unclear why Microsoft made it difficult in the past to download installation media directly from the company.

This guide offers direct links to programs or disc images that you can download legally to your system. You still need a valid Windows product key to use them though.

They can be useful to many Windows users. Those who want to transfer the operating system to a new PC or new hard drive, and those who want a backup in place to make sure they can reinstall the system when it stops working.

Note: All downloads below are from official sources only. It is not recommended to download Windows from unofficial sources. You can use the tools described below to burn or copy the installation files to disc or USB, or use a third-party disc burning program like ImgBurn or the operating system's burning option if supported to burn it directly to DVD.

You do need a valid product key for the operating system and version that you plan to install. Most can be used a certain amount of time, 30 days usually, without registration.

(article and download links)
http://www.ghacks.net/2014/12/18/windows-downloads-for-all-operating-systems/

The best option to create installation media for Windows 8.1 is to download Microsoft's create media tool. It is a small program that you run on your system to create the necessary files to install Windows 8.1 on a PC.

All you need to do is select the desired language, edition of Windows 8.1 and architecture and you are good to go. You can select directly if you want to copy the files to a USB flash drive or create a ISO file instead.

Create installation media for Windows 8.1
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/create-reset-refresh-media

:)

James
 

Exterminator

Community Manager
Staff member
Verified
This is a very good article.The main thing is these are valid links and not from a torrent.This is definitely worthy of a sticky.Thanks for a very informative and useful thread
 
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Cailey1100

New Member
Hi, I need help with my laptop, i bought it a few years back and it has Windows Vista Home now I downgraded it to Windows XP because I'm not very comfortable using Vista and now it's not shutting down..What should I do? Thanks.
 

marzametal

Level 7
Verified
Hi, I need help with my laptop, i bought it a few years back and it has Windows Vista Home now I downgraded it to Windows XP because I'm not very comfortable using Vista and now it's not shutting down..What should I do? Thanks.
How did you downgrade?
 

Piteko21

Level 18
Verified
Wow very usefull this links and info, now that I will change my old windows Vista for windows 7, thanks :D

that start formatting...
 
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Momentum

New Member
Sensational just what I need

I have a laptop few years old now but still a good system the product key is on the bottom and has warn out making it hard to read

The key in system information for windows is that the complete product key ?

Thanks in advance
 

vishwa

New Member
I hate this strategy of Microsoft to forcefully download the windows 10 with the user consent.
 

jamescv7

Level 61
Trusted
Verified
@Momentum: For Windows Vista and 7 then yes however for 8/8.1/10 are hard coded to motherboard so you need a little tool to revel the unique product key.

Link
 

Anupam

Level 21
I need one widows 7 64 bit ISO image with all updates so far integrated. For reinstall I am now scared of microsoft updates. :p