Windows 7 Upgrade Fails And Stuck In Loop – "The upgrade was not successful"

by Rohit Khurana on September 2, 2010


Today we will be telling you about the solution of problem which you might have faced while trying to upgrade your Windows Vista to Windows 7. You might have found this upgrade process running fine till the last step of the upgrade i.e (transferring files/programs/etc.) but then suddenly your system reboot and you received the error messages that “ Your upgrade was not successful. Your previous version of windows is restored. Do not restart your windows during this time”.


However when you restart your computer, the same upgrade process starts again and in the end again you see the same error messages. Then these error messages repeatedly come every time you tried to reboot your system. You are facing this issue because one or more shell folders like Documents, Music, Pictures etc. might be redirected to the locations within their own paths.

And to solve this problem, you will need to follow the following steps.

Step 1 : Access the System Recovery option :- This option is inside your window 7 installation CD and to access this option, just follow the following steps.

  • Insert your Windows 7 installation CD and then restart your system and then press a key when you are prompted to restart from disk.
  • When the installation of Windows begin fill the options select language, time, currency, keyboard input method etc. and then click Next.
  • Now you will see two options i.e to install your Windows or repair your Windows. Click on Repair option and after that a System Recovery option window will open.
  • In that window select the version of Windows 7 and then click on Command Prompt. A new Command Prompt window will now open.

After your command prompt window opens, you will need to locate you duplicate folders. To locate your duplicate folders, follow Step 2.

Step 2 : Locate the Duplicate Folders :-

  • Now type the command “cd /d c:\users” in your command prompt. After firing this command “>” will come in next line with directory path written before it.
  • Now you need to type command “dir /s | find “is too long” |more” and after pressing enter if you see some data, then note the name of those duplicate folders and go to Step 3. While if you still unable to see the Duplicate Folders then do the next step.
  • If “—More—” is displayed at the bottom of the page, press the space bar to continue to the next screen. Note the new folder names that are displayed. Repeat this process until “—More—” is no longer displayed at the bottom of the screen, and then go to Step 3.

Now you will need to move your Duplicate Folders which you have noted in above step to a temporary location. Follow Step 3 to move your duplicate folders.

Step 3 : Move Duplicate Folders to temporary location :-

  • Type the command “move [Identified_folder] [Destination_location] in the command prompt. Like for example “move C:\Users\Nitish\Documents\Documents C:\Temp”.
  • Repeat this command for all your duplicate folder one by one and to verify that no duplicate folders are left, type command “cd c:\users and dir /s | find “is too long” |more”.
  • After this exit from Command prompt by typing Exit and then restart your computer.

When you restart your computer you will again see that error message but wait now for some time. This message will disappear and after some processing your system will restart on Windows Vista as it earlier does. Now in Vista you will need to check if your shell folders are not redirected. To check it, follow Step 4.

Step 4: Confirm that the shell folders are not redirected :-

  • In vista open My Computer and then go to C: and then click on user. In user open your personal folder and then right click a shell folder.
  • Now click on its Properties and then on its Location. Now check the path of this folder for example the Documents folder should have the path “C:\Users\Nitish\Documents”.
  • If you find this path incorrect, then click on Restore Default.
  • Repeat this process for all shell folders.

Now restart your computer and then retry to upgrade your Windows. Now you must be able to upgrade your Windows.

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