I have bought a new laptop, that came with trial version of Windows 7 32 bit. I use 64bit OS, always, so I went ahead and downloaded 64bit version. I have keys for both versions, so there is no issue of activation. Problem is, the OS came in an iso format. Now, when I try to create a bootable usb, it does not work. I tried to directly run the setup, and it keeps saying current version is 32 bit, and I need 64 bit version to continue. How am I supposed to get 64 bit OS now, if the OS itself is not getting installed? I can't even get a installation disc from anywhere, neither my system support dvd. I am stuck with default bloated OS, and can't upgrade.


Tried the tool too. Same issue again. I can copy the files to USB, but unable to create boot sector. Online help suggested to download bootsect.exe for 32 bit and use that to create boot sector, but no link is available.

Update for downvoters:

I don't want to know how to create a bootable disc. I know how to do that. I am having issues because I can't run the required executable, as the only version available is 64 bit, while my OS is 32. If you can't read the full question properly, do not downvote. Kindly just ignore it, and move on.

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    Laptops do not come with a "trial" version of windows. Furthermore the key for a 64-bit installation or a 32-bit installation would be exactly the same. Something doesn't seem right here. I would simply download the current .iso that Microsoft offers for free ( see the Superuser question for a link ) and use that. You will need to format your hdd in order to install the 64-bit Windows 7. – Ramhound Jul 19 '12 at 15:35
  • May be not in US. In India, they do. :) I have the iso downloaded. Command prompt method to create bootable usb does not work. And I have opted for extra hdd in place of dvd, so can't burn dvd. Trying the USB/DVD download tool. Here is to hope that it works like a charm. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 15:41
  • The fact you recieve a "trial" version of Windows indicates the computer didn't come with a version of Windows 7. This means you need to supply your own license. Just install Windows 7 x64 over the current installation, you certainly CAN get a installation disk if you wanted, because there is a Superuser question that explains how to make your own installation disk ( which includes USB devices ). – Ramhound Jul 19 '12 at 16:13
  • That was exactly what I am trying to accomplish. Creating an installation disk is failing, because current version is 32 bit. And I won't get 64 bit OS to create an installation disk, unless the installation is complete. Duh! – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 16:20

Write the iso to a DVD and boot that, or write it to a pen drive using the windows 7 USB/DVD download tool. Then boot from the pen drive.

In both cases you will need to wipe the old 32 bit installation. You can not upgrade from 32 to 64 bits versions.

  • imgburn is a very nice freeware .iso burning tool. – Joe Taylor Jul 19 '12 at 15:28
  • It is. I use imgburn myself. I still prefer a 4GB USB pen drive for installs since it allows me to easily update an extra folder with drivers. It was also a lot faster. The last is not really important if you only need to do this once per year. The OP does not mention which laptop was used, so no idea if he needs extra drivers. – Hennes Jul 19 '12 at 15:33
  • Thanks. Will check that tool. Earlier method using bootsect.exe from command prompt was not working. And yes, I am planning to wipe everything. This is a new box, and came with too much bloatware, so, no other option is there but to clean up the hdd. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 15:34
  • Update: The file downloaded does not have any extension, at all. I hope renaming it to iso works. I don't want to download 3 gigs worth data again. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 15:38
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    Same problem. It copied the files, but was unable to create a boot sector. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 15:55

You need to obtain the correct version of BOOTSECT.EXE (64-bit/x64 or 32-bit/x86)

I think if you are creating the install media on a 32-bit Windows system, you need the 32-bit BOOTSECT.EXE (regardless of whether the USB mass-storage device will contain the ISO for a 64-bit Windows install).

  • Thanks man. Tried it, and it worked. Although I ended up with a failed install later on, but it worked. – jitendragarg Jul 20 '12 at 17:09

The steps here should walk you through creating a bootable USB stick from a Windows 7 ISO: http://arstechnica.com/business/2009/12/the-usb-flash-drive/

Once the USB stick is created, configure the BIOS on your computer to boot from the USB stick.

Alternatively, you could look into external DVD drives, if your BIOS is capable of booting from that.

  • I don't plan to buy anything just to move to 64bit os. Making the leap to 64 bit itself is big enough step. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 15:35
  • I figured that. Then try the walkthrough that I linked you to. It should get you going right away! – James Johnston Jul 19 '12 at 15:57
  • Same issue. Unable to create boot sector. Without that, there is no way for me to boot via usb. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 15:59
  • The tool worked perfectly for me. You are doing something WRONG. – Ramhound Jul 19 '12 at 16:14
  • Do you have 32 bit OS or 64 bit? It was not working on 32 bit OS. It says that bootsect can't run on 32 bit system, as only bootsect file available on installation iso is a 64 bit version. – jitendragarg Jul 19 '12 at 16:21


I downloaded just the bootsect.exe file and copied it to windows/system32. Now, while creating disc using command prompt, instead of using iso's bootsect.exe, I used the new one. USB/DVD tool will not work in this case.

  • Which is what RedGrittyBrick suggested - pretty much. It looks like the answers were pretty close together, so i don't know who came first. Don't forget to mark one of these as an answer! – Journeyman Geek Jul 20 '12 at 7:33
  • Mine was just a moment earlier, but I couldn't mark this as answer. It said "wait for 22 hours" or something like that. Marked both now. – jitendragarg Jul 21 '12 at 15:50

Use universal usb installer to make your pendrive bootable http://www.pendrivelinux.com/universal-usb-installer-easy-as-1-2-3/

  • i had a same problem , i used this tool to install windows from pendrive – asvignesh Nov 23 '12 at 14:25

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