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Upgrade: 64 Bits of Freedom

Installation Step Two-B: Upgrading Method 2

The second method when upgrading is a complete clean install. This generally leaves you with a crisper and faster system compared to the first method and offers maximum hard drive space as well. However, a clean install is slightly more dangerous because it will reformat your hard drive, erasing all data you have not backed up to a separate drive.

To do this, start your computer with the installation DVD inserted. It should give you an option to press any key to boot from the CD/DVD-ROM. When you see this message, press any key. If this message does not appear, reboot your computer and press the Boot Menu key, which is generally F11, but can sometimes be F2 or F10 (it will say on the splash screen when your computer is starting up). The Boot Menu will give you a list of options from which to boot. Select CD/DVD-ROM and you should see the "Press any key" message.

It should boot into the Windows Installer, where you will select Install Now. Follow the prompts until you come to a screen with an Upgrade option and Custom (Advanced) option. Select the Custom option.

This will take you to a screen with a list of hard drives. Select the drive you want to reformat and install Windows. Then you will click the Reformat button (you may have to click the Advanced Options button depending which version of Windows you are installing). Be absolutely sure this is the correct drive before reformatting it, as all data on it will be erased permanently.

Now click Next and the installation process will begin. Once the installation is complete, you can setup your account and login information as well as regional settings. Once logged into Windows, you will want to install your drivers. It is generally best to restart between each driver installation, starting with your chipset drivers, then video drivers, Ethernet/wireless drivers, and lastly audio drivers.

All Bits Accounted For

Now that you have your drivers installed and everything working well, enjoy your new 64-bit system. If your computer came with 4 GB of RAM or more, you will notice that all of it not only shows up in your system information, but it is all accessible as well. Take advantage of your free performance boost and install some games or edit some detailed photographs on Photoshop. Install Daemon Tools and see what a blessing it is to be able to mount an entire 4 GB file entirely to memory.

The age of 64-bit computing is upon us and now you are part of it as well.