Windows 10 forum


From Win10 to Win7 problem

Purchased a new HP laptop for Christmas. Default OS is naturally Windows 10. I don't like nor want Win10 as my default OS. I want to remove all of Win10 and its related files completely and install Windows 7 as my default OS.

What do I need to do to accomplish this feat? First a little background:

Why I want to do this is irrelevant. The Geek Squad at BestBuy assured me that it could be done and I understand I may possibly lose some features of the new computer system and Win7 drivers could become an issue but one that could be overcome with due diligence. Any help naturally would be appreciated.

I purchased a commercial program to help with supposedly the reformatting but it says that it must be installed on the computer first. That is a non starter as I've managed to screw that up by trying to install Win 7 over Win10 due to some bad advice from a family friend (turned out to be bad advice). So in short I can't get rid of or use Win7 now nor repair or use Win10 as a result. Restore won't work. In short I have an expensive paper weight. Tried using a utility called 'HDD Low Level Format Tool v4.25' to reformat the HDD from a bootable thumb drive. Didn't work. Msg I got for mhy troubles says that 'This program must be run under Win32' from the c:/> prompt. Lost me there.

I have the following computer:

HP - ENVY 17.3" Touch-Screen Laptop - Intel Core i7 - 16GB Memory - NVIDIA GeForce MX150 - 1TB Hard Drive - Natural Silver Model: 17M-AE111DXm from BestBuy at

Answer This Ask For Clarification
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: From Win10 to Win7 problem
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.

All Answers

Collapse -
Re: W10 to W7

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem

Just boot from your Windows 7 install disk and tell it to delete all partitions on the hard disk before it starts installing. If it doens't ask it, and refuses to install, download a Linux Mint disc and use GPARTED to delete all partition on the hard disk. Then install Windows 7 from the disk.

Collapse -
Re: Win10 to 7

In reply to: Re: W10 to W7

Thanks I'll try the Linux program and see how that works out. The other method of loading up Win7 hasn't worked for me.

Collapse -
when you do that.

In reply to: Re: Win10 to 7

Open the Terminal in the Linux distro and run the following commands. It will give us enough info to check out all the chips on the motherboard and see if there are W7 drivers anywhere for all of them. As for the CPU used, that should be adequately covered by the BIOS program. It's the other chips that may present a problem, like those for northbridge, southbridge, sound, LAN, video, et al.

inxi -v7 (remove the line giving away your IP address, not needed)



Post results

Collapse -
Graphics drivers for Intel HD Graphics 530

In reply to: Re: Win10 to 7

Collapse -
While you might get the W7 OS installed.

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem

This has the rather new Core i7-8550U CPU and well, it's well discussed the issue with Microsoft's support of W7 on the new CPUs. Also I can't find drivers for the machine at HP for Windows 7.

You may be stuck with W7 but no touchscreen or acceptable video mode along with other issues.

But I have seen W7 run. The person who does this is usually upset at the driver issues and what no longer works.

Found the laptop finally, had to alter your supplied model number.

No Windows 7 drivers.

Post was last edited on January 17, 2018 9:10 AM PST

Collapse -
PS. You never format the HDD before installing Windows.

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem

Just leave it blank, and boot the Windows install media then install. If you format the drive, you will have a bad day.

Collapse -
Re: Win10 to 7

In reply to: PS. You never format the HDD before installing Windows.

You didn't read my original post apparently. Neither 10 nor 7 will install now nor will either one restore.

Collapse -
Read it.

In reply to: Re: Win10 to 7

I've installed almost every version of Windows since 1.0. There are some oddball models you can't install Windows to without a special driver on USB or CD. I didn't see that in the model under discussion so from my view, when you formatted the drive then tried to install Windows you made a common mistake.

I do encounter folk that want to install W7 on such a PC but they end up being very upset about the results. Usually no decent video mode, no sound, no WiFi, etc due to no drivers.

Here your posts point to the usual issues (formatting before install.)

What W10 do you have? And then what Linux?

Collapse -
the linux version you should get

In reply to: Read it.

Collapse -
PS - if everything works OK on laptop with Linux

In reply to: the linux version you should get

(the most common problems are with inbuilt wifi devices) but those can be bypassed using an USB wifi that works in Linux.

If all works OK, then you can open the Software Manager, install Virtual Box, or VMWare's VB, and then install Windows 7 into a virtual hard drive file you create on the 1TB drive. There are some advantages to such. I even have my linux setup with a vhd file that runs a W7 install. You can make "snapshot" for restoring, when windows internal restore fails. You can copy the entire vhd or vdi file that contains the W7 system as a backup too. You can run both W7 and Linux simultaneously, and if connected to router with file sharing setup, can move files between the two systems.

Collapse -
Factory restore is too easy to blow up.

In reply to: Re: Win10 to 7

I can see why in your posts. When the factory restore is blown you have to order restore media if you can't install from your own Windows USB or DVDs.

Collapse -
Some info I dug up

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem


Product Number : 1KT19UA
Description : HP ENVY - 17M-AE111DX

MB DSC MX150 2GB i7-8550U WIN

Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7265NV 802.11ac 2x2 WiFi + Bluetooth 4.0 combination WLAN adapter (Most of World)

8GB, 2400MHz, PC4-17000, 1.2v DDR4 SODIMM

this claims the integrated video chip is;
Integrated GPU: Intel UHD 620

Display controller 3 displays
Integrated graphics GPU Type: Intel UHD 620
Graphics tier: GT2
Base frequency (MHz): 300
Maximum frequency (MHz): 1150
Memory controller The number of controllers: 1
Memory channels: 2
Supported memory: LPDDR3-2133, DDR4-2400
Maximum memory bandwidth (GB/s): 34.1

However the MX150 is a Geforce Nvidia chip!

This seems to be the same motherboard in an Acer.

GPU – NVIDIA GeForce MX150 (2GB GDDR5)

The GeForce MX150 is an entry-level mobile card that is part of the latest NVIDIA Pascal lineup of GPUs, based on the GP108 chip paired with 2GB of GDDR5 memory via 64-bit interface. The GPU is the successor of GeForce 940MX and it was announced in Q2 of 2017.

The GeForce MX150 operates at a relatively high base frequency of 1469 MHz, while the Boost frequencies can go up to 1532 MHz. The GPU incorporates 384 shader units (CUDA cores) while the memory is clocked at 6008MHz (effective). These specs ensure a significant performance boost over the previous generation of Maxwell GPUs. The TDP of the GPU is lower than the last generation GTX 950M and even the GTX 1050 – 25W compared to 40W for the two models above. Performance-wise, the GeForce MX150 should be similar to the desktop GeForce GT 1030.

Along with all the power consumption and performance improvements, the GPU now supports essential features like Multi-Projection, VR Ready, G-SYNC, Vulkan and Multi-Monitor.

Check the prices of all notebooks equipped with NVIDIA GeForce MX150
Since your motherboard mentions MX150, this should be the drivers for the onboard video.
there are driver files for window 7, 64 bit version!
Provides nothing but windows 10 driver files.


Collapse -
Between a rock and a hard place

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem

Like they say in Ireland when you ask directions "Well, I wouldn't start from here...". Seriously, though, you are in a difficult position. Some random thoughts:

Try the suggestions from Kees_B, Bob and James to try to delete all the partitions from the hard disk, making sure it's still a GPT disk and not an MBR from your earlier activity. If you can get it wiped, your OS DVD should reformat the disk as necessary and install the operating system. Either 7 or 10 should install but whether 7 will give you a working system that you can live with, despite the functions you will lose due to lack of drivers, is an open question.

If you can't get either to work, you will need to order a set of Factory Restore Media from HP to restore the system to the Windows 10 state it was shipped with. When you get back to 10, before you do anything else, make an Image Copy of the entire disk, not forgetting the rescue CD, so you can get back and start again if it all goes wrong again.

What I'd do to checkout 7 would be to download Partition Wizard and reduce either the data partition if there is one or the system disk if not by around 32 GB and try installing 7 in that now free space. You should be able to get it to the best state you can and decide if you can live with it. If you can, then you can clean up the HDD to leave a pure 7 system.

If you can't get 7 working, at least to a liveable state, take a look at Start10 from StarDock, which can essentially put a Win7 UI on to a Win10 system.

But, if you do get 7 to an acceptable state, do think about what you will do in 2 years time when extended support ends for it and there will be no more security patches - the bad guys will pounce on it.

Good luck, I fear you are going to need it.

Collapse -
A solution

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem


This is not an answer to your question so blow past it if you deem it irrelevant but it is a solution to your problem.

As background, do recognize that UEFI computers with W10 will frustrate attempts to install over the OS whether it is still functioning or corrupted or crashed or trashed. So, skip past the problem with a hardware solution, not a software one.

Buy a 500GB m2 SSD, take out the 1TB hard drive and install W7. You are lucky to have a built-in optical drive for OS installation purpose. You can reformat the 1TB afterwards and put it back in as extra storage. After spending beaucoup bucks on a hi-end computer you deserve better performance which the SSD provides than a pokey hard drive even at 7200rpm. You will find instructions on how to perform surgery on your computer here

Download the PC-maintenance and service guide.

Good luck.

Collapse -
Windows 10 Only?

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem

At the HP support webpage for your HP Envy model number 17M-AE111DXm it shows only Windows 10 as the operating system; no mention of Windows 7 or 8. On the software and drivers download page for your model it does not show any drivers for Windows 7 or 8. In other words, this is intended to be a Windows 10-only machine.

If your laptop is less than 30 days old BestBuy may allow you to exchange it for a different model. If their staff misled you about Windows 7 compatibility they should take it back even if it's been longer than 30 days. Then the question arises, do they sell ANY model that comes with an authorised "downgrade to Windows 7" compatibility?

If, after due consideration, you decide to stick with Windows 10, you may use the web address/link below this paragraph to order a set of Windows 10 recovery media. Scroll way down the page and click on "Order Recovery Media" then click on the blue link "Order Media" and follow instructions. Obviously, you'll be paying for your mistake in real $$$. The advantage is that not only do you get the machine working, you also have a backup if a similar problem ever happens again. If the laptop's hard drive needs to be completely erased before reinstalling Windows 10, there is software available which can be run from a CD/DVD or from a USB flash drive to erase/over-write everything on the drive, re-format the drive, or "secure-erase" the drive. Then you can use the HP recovery media to reinstall Windows 10. An old favorite to erase/over-write the drive is a small utility app called Darik's Boot and Nuke, also known simply as DBAN. Google it, download it and follow instructions to burn it onto a blank CD or USB flash drive. Then insert it into the laptop and restart the laptop. It should boot up to show the DBAN app. It may take hours to erase/over-write your entire hard drive as it's writing 0's and 1"s on the entire space, so be patient.

Collapse -
This Puzzles Me

In reply to: From Win10 to Win7 problem

I have never understood the reluctance of people to implement Windows 10. Windows 10 is cleaner, faster, more stable, more reliable, more versatile, and more logically laid out than Windows 7 or any previous versions.

It is different, to be sure, but once one acclimates to the new system, going back to Windows 7 is a bit like trying to go back to Windows 98 after you grew accustomed to XP, another operating system that many users, abetted by loudmouthed, opinionated, self-appointed Windows gurus resisted at first.

I am afraid that you have brought your problems on yourself. I would suggest that you get an original O/S and driver distribution disk for your machine from HP and start over, and learn how to use Windows 10.

I know this sounds a bit dismissive, but... well, it is.

Popular Forums

Computer Newbies 10,686 discussions
Computer Help 54,365 discussions
Laptops 21,181 discussions
Networking & Wireless 16,313 discussions
Phones 17,137 discussions
Security 31,287 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 22,101 discussions
Windows 7 8,164 discussions
Windows 10 2,657 discussions


This one tip will help you sleep better tonight

A few seconds are all you need to get a better night's rest.