With the widely hyped and much publicized Windows 8 not living up to its potential, consumers like you don’t have to be stuck with something which you hate. Although after upgrading, many people often think the best option is to stick with what they got until they get used to it. If you’re one of the many who upgraded from Windows 7 to Windows 8, then it might be safe to assume that you are among the disgruntled as well. Luckily, you can easily downgrade back to the Windows 7 for free.

Even, if you’ve purchased a Windows 8 desktop/laptop, you don’t need to trash it and mourn the spent cash. Rather than face a loss in sales and consumers, Microsoft offers users the choice of downgrading  their Windows 8 to Windows 7 or even Windows Vista on their purchased devices completely free of cost. This entails that users do not have to purchase two different copies.

Downgrade Windows 8 to Windows 7 for Free

Downgrading Limited to Windows Vista and Windows 7

While the downgrading option opened up the possibility of getting the beloved Windows 7 or the Windows Vista back in your PC, Microsoft does not allow you to downgrade to the widely used yet being pushed for retirement, Windows XP. With Windows XP lined up to be sent to retirement in April 2013, Microsoft will soon be pulling support from Windows XP. Nonetheless with the option to downgrade to Windows 7, users will definitely be happy and have no cause to complain.

Requirements for Making a Downgrade

The downgrading option became available since the launch of Windows Vista 2007 when many consumers became frustrated with the problems in Windows Vista 2007 reverted back to Windows XP. However, before you choose to click on the downgrade button, here are a few things to keep in view:

  • Downgrading on laptops/desktops which have Windows 8 preinstalled require you to check the downloading rights of the computer manufacturer, like HP and Microsoft.
  • Downgrading is mostly offered for OEM or pre-installed copies of Windows 8
  • Downgrading is only supported on Windows 8 Pro and it is not clear whether the downgrading option is available for retail copies of the Windows 8.

The Drawbacks of Downgrading

Before you start rejoicing over the fact that Microsoft allows for the downgrading of your Windows 8 PC, there are also a few drawbacks to the task. Microsoft does not extend any support in helping the user acquire the downgrade and you can find that clearly stated in their agreement policy:

“Neither the manufacturer or installer, nor Microsoft, is obligated to supply earlier versions to you. You must obtain the earlier version separately.”

Due to this clause, many users are forced to utilize various do-it-yourself downgrading techniques. While the tech-savy individuals among us might have little to no problems in this department, the daunting task of modifying the PC’s BIOS to boot into the ‘legacy mode’ before the downgrade can be applied, is not something an average user can do on their own.

[Image via lifehacker]