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Will it be possible to upgrade from Windows 8 Release Preview to the RTM version?

I've seen this related question Upgrade/Update Windows 8 customer preview to normal version, but I'm interested to know if I will be able to upgrade from the Release Preview to the final Release To Manufacture version.

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It was not possible with windows 7, and I doubt it will be possible with windows 8, but haven't seen anything on the subject. Welcome to SuperUser! – Darth Android Jun 21 '12 at 19:12
Thanks for making me feel welcome :) – Scott Langham Jun 21 '12 at 19:22
  • Microsoft had already announced that there would be no upgrade path from the Release Preview to the RTM version of Windows 8, and for whatever reason you'd still want to be able to do this, it appears it's now possible with an easy (unsupported) workaround.

  • A blogger over on the Knowledge Exchange posted the details on how to fool the RTM to allow the upgrading of the Release Preview and earlier versions of Windows 8 as far back as the Developer Preview. This trick should work on any version of a test Windows 8 build anyway.

  • Simply find the n:\sources\cversion.ini file on the media and open it with notepad. Change the two numbers from 8508 to 7100 save and close the file.

  • You need to put your extracted ISO / installation in a place you can make changes to it to edit this file. In short, in a writable disk.


Note : This is purely a Workaround

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Your information is not current. The upgrade from Release Preview to RTM is fully supported. The upgrade path is exactly the same as if you were to upgrade from Windows XP only user files are transfered. Of course the technical reason this is possible is because you upgrade Windows 7 to Windows 8 Release Preview so you already have a valid Windows license. This upgrade path is fully supported by Microsoft of course there is little point if all that is transfered is user files. – Ramhound Aug 27 '12 at 13:02
@Ramhound There is no upgrade path from Windows 8 Consumer Preview or Windows 8 Release Preview to the Released-to-Manufacturing (RTM) version of Windows 8. If you have already installed Windows 8 Consumer Preview or Windows 8 Release Preview, you will be required to perform a clean install. The installation process will automatically create a Windows.old folder that contains all files from your Windows 8 Consumer Preview or Windows 8 Release Preview installation. Link to Support:… – aliasgar Aug 27 '12 at 13:07
'Upgrade', at least using that term, as of the 8/8/12 was not possible, you can migrate or clean install… – mic84 Aug 27 '12 at 13:13
As I point out the ability to upgrade is limited to transfering your user files which is 100% more then what was possible when you upgraded from Windows 7 RC to the RTM version Windows 7. – Ramhound Aug 27 '12 at 13:18
@Aliasgar - This question has nothing to do with trying to migrate/upgrade an installation of Windows 8 Consumer Preview so why bring it up? My information is off a Winodws 8 Build Blog post. – Ramhound Aug 27 '12 at 13:20

You might be able to but I would not rely on it. The Windows 8 FAQ mentions upgrading from previous versions but does not specify upgrading to the final released version. I know in previous releases it was not an option. At the end of the day you should treat it like beta software and not depend on it working.

According to an MS MVP's in a thread on

...note that the final release of Windows 8 will not support upgrading from any prior Windows 8 "Preview" release, though the migrate option will still be supported.

More information on the "migration" option from Paul Thurrott's Win SuperSite. There are four possible choices for Windows 8 upgrade and from the Release Preview and only the minimal migration of personal files is supported. Applications will need to be reinstalled. And I agree with his closing comments:

Should you take advantage of this feature? Honestly, if you’re using a Microsoft account to sync settings already, and have configured the SkyDrive desktop application to reconfigure your Windows 8 libraries already and store important documents and other data files in the cloud, you may be better off just doing a clean install. Of course, you perform either of these install types at your own risk, and be sure to back everything up ahead of time either way.

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I cannot recall any Microsoft Beta / Preview operating system ever upgrading to an RTM version. – Guy Thomas Jun 26 '12 at 20:20
The MS MVP was 100% wrong. IT IS possible to upgrade Windows 8 RC to Windows 8 RTM provided you purchase the Windows 8 Upgrade. – Ramhound Aug 10 '12 at 11:09

It may be possible with some "hack", but it is not officially supported. However, it IS possible to do a "custom" install of Windows 8 RTM (even using upgrade media) if you have a previous Windows 8 Release Preview installation on your computer. It will place your old files in a folder called "windows.old" at the root of your main drive (I have done this). Your programs and settings will NOT be preserved and you will need to re-install them.

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