How Can I Install Windows 8 Without Disturbing Windows 7 OS Files and User Data

by Abhishek Bhatnagar on June 5, 2012


We got this question from one of our reader named Rahul who asked us if there is way he can install windows 8 on his computer without affecting the windows 7 operating system files and user data on his computer. We have already talked about a lot on windows 8, on whether you can install windows 8 on new or old computer in case you are interested in read more windows 8 related information including how to and troubleshooting, you can read out windows 8 tips and tricks or use the website search to find what you need.


Firstly for those wondering, the answer to the above question is yes, Yes you can install windows 8 on any windows 7 or vista or xp based computer provided you fulfill the hardware related requirement for windows 8 that is

  • 1 GHz or faster processor
  • 1 GB RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
  • DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver

Now if your PC fulfill the above requirement, you can follow the step by step procedure below to install windows 8 without affecting windows 7 os and user data files on your computer, and you don’t need to format any drive on your hard disk to install windows 8, you just need 16gb free space on any drive other than the windows 7 primary partition or C:\ Drive because you cannot install windows 8 on the same partition where windows 7 or Vista or Xp is already installed.

Preparing For Windows 8 Install Keeping Windows 7

Now once you have free 16gb or more [ we recommend 20 GB free ] on any drive on your hard disk, you can go ahead for the windows 8 install without deleting other files on the same drive on which you have 16 GB free as windows 8 will get installed on the same drive without requiring you to delete other files and make that drive empty.

Step 1: Download Windows 8 ISO File


You can microsoft has now allowed to download the ISO image directly from their servers for those who need without the regular hassle of windows 8 consumer setup utility. Go to this page to download the ISO file. In case you have the windows 8 dvd you will need to create ISO image file for the same or insert the DVD in CD DVD Drive for the step 2

Step 2: Transfer Windows 8 ISO File To DVD or USB

Now once you have downloaded the windows 8 ISO File you will need to burn the ISO image file to a DVD or USB Flash Drive [ Minimum Size 4 Gb Completely Formatted and Empty ] For this you can download the official microsoft USB/DVD tool to transfer the setup files.


  1. Click to open the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download tool installation file.
  2. When you are prompted to either save the file to disk or run it, choose Run.
  3. Follow the steps in the setup dialogs. You’ll have the option to specify where to install the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool.

NOTE: You need to be an administrator on the computer you are installing the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download tool on. The tool requires the Microsoft .NET Framework version 2.0 or higher.

Step 3: Boot from DVD or USB With Windows 8 Setup Files

Make sure that your DVD or USB Drive is connect to the computer on which you want to install windows 8, then restart the computer and boot with USB or DVD to start windows 8 setup, you may need to change the boot device priority to do start the windows 8 setup, and in case you are installing from USB you will need to find out whether the motherboard on your computer does support booting from USB Drive or not. You can find this under BIOS Settings >> Boot Supported Devices.

Step 4: During Windows 8 Setup

Once the windows 8 setup is started, select Install when prompted, during the install process, when asked choose a Custom install not for upgrade and once selected this option you will need to select the partition on the hard drive to install Windows 8, this will install Windows 8 on a separate partition instead of your current Windows partition.

Please Note: Make sure not to format the contents of the drive when you are asked for it, while setup is trying to install windows 8 on it, this will preserve the files on the drive and nothing will be deleted or altered and windows 8 will get install just like you install a software on windows.

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