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Download a Windows 7 ISO

windows7_logoMost computer manufactures these days do not ship a Windows 7 DVD with their computers. Instead, they supply an ISO image of the Windows 7 operating system, and leave it to the customer to burn the Windows 7 ISO to a DVD.  It makes sense from a manufacturing perspective  because shipping DVD’s with each computer costs money, but not so much from the average end-user perspective because most end-users are unclear why it is important to burn the Windows 7 ISO to  a DVD, or how to burn an image to DVD, or just don’t think about it until disaster strikes.  Which, by then it is too late to burn the Windows 7 ISO.

“ISO image is a term commonly associated with CD and DVD burning.  An ISO image (or .ISO file) is a computer file that is an exact copy of an existing file system.  An ISO can contain the entire contents of a CD-ROM disc or CD medium. ISO files are typically created through a software application that will open, create, edit, and extract CD or DVD image files, then convert the extracted image to an ISO file, easily allowing users to burn an exact copy of the original onto CD or DVD.” (Source: webopedia.com)

What typically happens in this scenario is the customer will call the computer manufacture’s support department only to find out that they have to order a Windows 7 DVD for their computer, and it’s going to cost them money.

There is another solution; you can download the Windows 7 ISO for your computer. Hopefully, you have a high-speed Internet connection, or know someone who does, because the ISO is going to be 2 to 4 Gigabytes, depending on which version of Windows 7 you need.  It’s going to take a little time to download the ISO.

UPDATE: Microsoft has changed where and how you can download a Windows 7 iso. First, Digital Rivers Content no longer hosts the Windows 7 iso files. Instead, head over to Microsoft’s Software Recovery page. Then you will need to provide a valid product key.

Keep in mind, you will still need your Windows 7 license key, which will only work with the version of Windows 7 that was installed on your computer. You should be able to find this on a sticker somewhere on the computer case, or in your computer’s documentation.  But at least you now have a working DVD of Windows 7 that you can use to repair or replace your installed version of Windows 7.

Burning a Windows 7 ISO to DVD

There are all kinds of programs that will burn an ISO image to DVD or CD. Two of my favorite freebie iso burners are InfraRecorder and BurnCDCC. Both are free, safe, easy to use, and work very well.



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