The cost of upgrading a PCs operating system

Posted By on November 4, 2009

Snow Leopard vs Win7I’m a regular reader of Paul Thurott and he had a great article on the “convoluted, ridiculous and hard to understand” pricing and option packages associated with upgrading a Microsoft Windows PC to the new Windows 7 operating system. He compared it to the “Bataan Death Match … but this time, the victims are your sanity and your wallet.” If you are a Mac lover, you’ll enjoy the “what is Microsoft thinking” article since Apple prices their update straight forward and all inclusive … although they do come every couple of years at a cost. Check out Part two of Win 7  vs. Snow Leopard.  Of course one could always consider one of  the vastly improved Linux OS flavors that are available as free downloads … which has me wondering why I still pay for licenses on my Apple and Windows computers?

Apple Snow Leopard OS

  1. Mac Leopard users can upgrade to Snow Leopard for $29 or five-Mac Family Pack for$49.
  2. Intel-based Tiger OS users will spend $169 or $229 for the family pack.
    ***All previous Mac hardware configurations are out of luck … old Leopard is a far as you can go.

Microsoft Windows 7 OS

  1. Windows 7 Home Premium (Upgrade) $119.99
  2. Windows 7 Home Premium (Full) $199.99
  3. Windows 7 Family Pack (Upgrade, retail only) $149.99
  4. Windows 7 Professional (Upgrade) $199.99
  5. Windows 7 Professional (Full) $299.99
  6. Windows 7 Ultimate (Upgrade) $219.99
  7. Windows 7 Ultimate (Full) $319.99
  8. College Students only: Windows 7 Home Premium (Upgrade) or Professional (Upgrade) $30 <== quite the deal if you have a .edu email address.  Haven’t had the nerve to try my alumni dot edu email address?


  • Tim
  • Thanks for the link Tim … although I enjoyed the aside in the blog post:
    [Update: Should you possess a “.EDU” address and decide to take advantage of the student discount, note Microsoft’s terms and conditions: “Microsoft or Digital River may contact you to verify that you are a current student. If documentation is not provided indicating that you are a current student, you will be liable to reimburse Microsoft for the difference between what you paid and the estimated retail price of the software.”–Ed.]

    For those wanting the $30 student edition … here’s the link:

  • Gary

    Hi Rich and thanks for the info. I am currently running windows vista ultimate and hate it. Do i need to purchase a microsoft 7 full version or just the upgrade…any idea?? Also, do you recommend home or professional?? Take care, Gary

  • PJ Luma]a

    Thanks for the links and prices. I didn’t know about the education al versions and wiill let you know if my alumni address works.

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.