A lot of persons have been asking about this, how do I upgrade from the Windows 8 Consumer Preview to the Windows 8 Release Preview. The reality is, there is no in place upgrade path at all. The installation wizard only gives you the option of doing a custom install, with a unique option of keeping your personal files by moving them to the Windows.old folder. Please note, you will have to reinstall any applications and drivers you were using before. In this article, we take a look at how to do it.
You can reference our previous articles about migrating from the Consumer Preview or Developer Preview at the following links:
- Prepare to migrate from Windows 8 Consumer Preview to Release Preview
- Part 2–Prepare to migrate from Windows 8 Consumer Preview to Release Preview
The first thing you need to do is boot to the Windows 8 Consumer Preview desktop and start the installation there. In this option I am using a DVD to install the Windows 8 Release Preview. The same options apply if you are using the Windows 8 Upgrade Assistant (Web Installer).
When prompted, enter your product key then click Next.
Accept the End User License Agreement then click Accept.
Now this is the part that has been getting people a bit anxious. Not to worry, although it says Nothing, it will simply move your current Windows 8 Consumer installation to the root of the hard disk in a folder called Windows.old, you will be able to retrieve your personal files from there after the installation is complete. You can do the Easy Transfer as additional precaution. Click Next to Start the installation.
Wait while Windows 8 installs, your computer will be restarted several times.
Recovering your personal files and settings
After the installation is complete and you have setup an account, you will be booted to the Windows 8 Start Screen, go to the Windows Desktop App.
Right click your User folder, click Windows Explorer
Open the hard disk where Windows 8 is installed
Open the Windows.old folder
Open the Users folder
Here you will see all the personal folders listed from your previous installation. You can open and copy over the contents of each folder into their respective directories in the Windows 8 Release Preview.
Contents from within one of the folders (My Documents).
Simply highlighting and dragging over the folders using the left click mouse button, the release, this will give you the option of replacing the folders in the current folder in the Release Preview.
Once you are certain everything has been copied over successfully, you can right click and delete the Windows.old folder to recover additional disk space.