In this article, learn about Windows 10 upgrade paths. Upgrade from previous Windows edition to Windows 10 is only possible, if an upgrade path exists.

If you’re an older Windows system and looking for upgrading it to Windows 10, then this article is for you. Well, upgrade from your existing Windows OS to Windows 10’s any edition will be only possible, if an upgrade path exists.

Windows 10 Upgrade Paths

So you must have clear information about the possible upgrade paths for your existing older Windows edition. This article will share you those upgrade paths, which can help you to get upgrade to right edition you’re looking for.

Windows 10 Upgrade Paths

Following are the upgrade paths possible for most selling Windows editions. This is referenced from Microsoft and full upgrade paths can be found here.

Here, ‘Upgrade possible‘ means you can upgrade using ISO file. This upgrade should preserve your settings, files/data, applications. While ‘Downgrade possible‘ means if you’ve the license for edition resulting after downgrade, you can make clean install for that. Note the downgrading via product key isn’t available.

Existing Windows OS↓
Windows 10 Home
Windows 10 Pro
Windows 10 Pro Education Windows 10 Education Windows 10 Enterprise
Windows 7 Starter Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible N/A
Windows 7 Home Basic Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible N/A
Windows 7 Home Premium Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible N/A
Windows 7 Professional Downgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 7 Ultimate Downgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 7 Enterprise N/A N/A N/A Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 8.1 Core Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible N/A
Windows 8.1 Connected
Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible N/A
Windows 8.1 Pro
Downgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 8.1 Pro Student Downgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 8.1 Pro With WMC Downgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 8.1 Enterprise N/A N/A N/A Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 8.1 Embedded Industry N/A N/A N/A N/A Upgrade possible
Windows 10 Home In-place upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible N/A
Windows 10 Pro Downgrade possible In-place upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible Upgrade possible
Windows 10 Education N/A N/A N/A In-place upgrade possible Downgrade possible
Windows 10 Enterprise N/A N/A N/A Upgrade possible In-place upgrade possible
Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC N/A N/A N/A N/A Upgrade possible

Important points:

If you’re on mobile: Upgrade from Windows Phone 8.1 to Windows 10 Mobile is possible. Windows 10 Mobile can be upgraded/downgraded to/from Windows 10 Mobile Enterprise.
FYI: As per the Microsoft policy, Windows 10 free upgrade offer ended on July 29, 2016. However, if you have previously upgraded to Windows 10 during free upgrade period and you’re trying to reinstall Windows 10 on same machine, it should get automatically activated, or you can use Activation troubleshooter.
NOTE: There is no upgrade path for any edition of Windows 8 to Windows 10. So if you’re on Windows 8, you need to first upgrade to Windows 8.1 and then you can upgrade to Windows 10. In such cases, we recommenced you to backup your data and make clean install of Windows 10, directly.
Important links: Information about Windows 10 edition upgrade is available in this documentation. For Windows 10 version’s life-cycle and support period, please refer this support article.

Hope you find the article informative!

Also check: A Quick Comparison Of Windows 10 Editions.

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2 Comments

  • Hi, I am trying to upgrade my Windows 8.1 installation to Windows 10. I downloaded Windows 10 ISO and created a DVD. I opened the DVD using File Explorer and ran setup and after “”We’re getting a few things ready” It says that Windows isn’t activated on this PC and it is asking me for the Windows 10 Product Key.

    Now, prior to running setup I cloned my hard disk and am working with the cloned drive. The drive seems to work and the Product Key is the same as on the original drive and I am able to download Windows Updates. Could cloning the hard drive cause this problem? If I go ahead and do a clean Windows 10 install on my clone will I be able to go back and install my original drive with Windows 8.1 if I do not want to keep Windows 10?

    Thanks,

    Frank

  • Kapil Arya

    ^^ Cloning might have cause the issue, but I am not sure if it is the only culprit. See if cloning termination helps you in this case.

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