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At the time of the Windows 8 Release Preview’s release last month, Microsoft spilled the beans on a special upgrade offer for those who buy eligible Windows 7-based PCs between June 2, 2012 and January 31, 2013. It did not reveal anything regarding the upgrade path for existing Windows users, though. But you may no longer have to wait until an official announcement from Redmond to know where you stand on the road to Windows 8, as a veteran Microsoft watcher claims to have the scoop on Microsoft’s Windows 8 upgrade plans.
According to ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley, Microsoft has already made some of its partners aware of its Windows 8 upgrade plans. The information Foley received from her “contacts” points to a large number of upgrade paths to Windows 8, starting all the way back from Windows XP.
As per the report, the only users who will be able to keep their settings, personal files, and applications intact are: those upgrading to Windows 8 from Windows 7 Starter, Windows 7 Home Basic, and Windows 7 Home Premium; those upgrading to Windows 8 Pro from Windows 7 Starter, Windows 7 Home Basic, Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Professional, and Windows 7 Ultimate; and those upgrading to Windows 8 Enterprise from Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Enterprise.
While Windows Vista users with SP1 installed will reportedly be able to retain their personal data and system settings, users upgrading from Windows Vista without SP1 installed and Windows XP( SP3 or higher) will have to be content with retaining just their personal data.