Windows 7 Install Guides

Microsoft's Windows 7 Uninstall to XP step by step Guide



Welcome to Microsoft's Windows 7 guide to restoring Windows XP after installing 7 onto the same drive as XP, after doing a custom install without formatting the Hard Drive.

The best way to see if you have this option is to check the drive for a folder called "Windows.old", inside this folder will be a "Windows" folder, a "Program Files" folder and a "Users" Folder. If these are present then this process is possible.

You will need your Windows 7 DVD to complete this process.



Windows XP Recovery from Windows 7 Ultimate Install

  • Insert Windows 7 Ultimate into DVD drive, and then restart the computer.
  • When "Press any key to boot from CD or DVD" appears, press any key.

  • Now Select language, time, currency and keyboard input, click "Next" to continue.
  • Now click on "Repair your Computer"

  • In the System Recovery Options window you may get a pause as Windows searches for operating systems, click the version of the Windows 7 you wish to remove, and then click Next.
  • Click Command Prompt

Move the Windows 7 Ultimate folders to a new Win7 folder

  • Now Type the following commands and followed by the "ENTER" key.


md Win7old

Move Windows Win7old\Windows

Move "Program Files" "Win7old\Program Files"

Move Users Win7old\Users

Attrib h s r ProgramData

Move ProgramData Win7old\ProgramData

Rd "Documents and Settings"

Now to Move the XP files out of the Windows.old folder

  • Type the following commands and press ENTER after each command:
move /y c:\Windows.old\Windows c:\

move /y "c:\Windows.old\Program Files" c:\

move /y "c:\Windows.old\Documents and Settings" c:\

Now restore the boot sector and boot.ini file (Windows XP will not boot without them)

  • Type the following commands and press ENTER after each command:
DVD:\boot\bootsect /nt52 c:

Attrib h s r boot.ini.saved

Copy boot.ini.saved boot.ini

(NOTE: the letters DVD represent our DVD drive, replace this with the drives letter, ie D: , E: , F: , G: etc etc )


  • Click Restart to restart your computer.

(NOTE: After you have verified that Windows XP is functional, you can remove the C:\Win7old folder if it is not needed)