Microsoft’s leaders really, really want you to forget about Vista and move right on to Windows 7. And who can blame them? Vista was a train wreck. No one who knows what they’re doing runs Vista, not even the Microsoft faithful. Windows 7, on the other hand, is a worthwhile desktop operating system. There’s only one little problem. There’s no good way to get from XP to 7.
Actually, that’s not a small problem at all. According to Net Applications’ Market Share report, in August 2009, 71.7% of all desktops were running XP, compared to a mere 18.8% running Vista. So, that means the great majority of Windows users will have to try to migrate from XP to 7.
I use the word “migrate” deliberately instead of “update” or “upgrade” because this will be a migration. If you are among the small minority using Vista, you can upgrade to 7 without any fuss or muss, so long as the move is between equivalent versions, like Vista Home Premium and Windows 7 Home Premium, or you’re jumping up, to Windows 7 Ultimate, for example.
I only wish that were the case for XP. The only way you can get from XP to Windows 7 is to do a clean install. Period. End of statement.