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Students find problems with Windows 7 upgrade

It's hard to argue with the $29 price tag, but some find that they can't install their downloadable copy of the operating system.

Microsoft's discount Windows 7 upgrade for students has proven to be a tough assignment for some of those who signed up for the offer.

The software maker is offering students the option of buying a downloadable upgrade version of Windows 7 for $29--a significant savings off the full boxed copy of the new operating system. However, a number of students have reported problems when trying to download and install the new version of Windows.

In a blog posting, Microsoft says it is aware of several issues that folks have encountered. Most common is the fact that folks can't easily go from the 32-bit version of Vista to the 64-bit version of Windows 7. That requires a clean installation.

Those in that camp can either get a refund or contact Digital River, the company managing the digital downloads, to try to get a disc with the operating system.

In addition to that issue, Microsoft notes that it is investigating two other errors that folks have been encountering. For some folks, the download hangs at a certain percentage and won't continue or resume.

"This appears to be a series of isolated issues that are often related to the user's Internet provider or installed third-party software," Microsoft said.

In other cases, users get a generic unspecified error message. "While not widespread, this issue appears to be caused when one of the downloaded files is incomplete or has become corrupted on the user's computer."

Students in that camp should try re-downloading the operating system, Microsoft said.