As a point of reference, the Windows Vista upgrade options from prior installations of Windows XP and Windows 2000 are shown on the Microsoft website on the Get Windows Vista: Upgrade options page and it shows you which installations allow an in-place upgrade and on which ones you’ll need to perform a clean install.
[NOTES FROM THE FIELD] – If there was some desire or need, you are able to upgrade Windows 2000 Professional to Windows XP and then from there you could upgrade to Vista (and from there I suppose you could go to Windows 7 if you really wanted to).
Either use the link above to download SP1 (the huge ISO file in the list applies to all Windows 7 computers), or use free WSUS Offline Update to download and install all necessary prerequisites, SP1 and latest security updates.
Windows Vista computers require Service Pack 2 to get latest updates from Windows Update.
While Microsoft mostly publishes security and stability updates on the second Tuesday of each month (Microsoft Office updates that are not security-related usually arrive a week earlier), there are times when critical fixes, stability updates and Service Packs are released outside the schedule.
That's why you should set your computer to look for available updates on a daily basis.
Windows updates can solve specific problems with Windows, provide protection from malicious attacks, or even add new features to the operating system.If you are having difficulties with a hardware device, see the basic troubleshooting overview for steps that can be taken to help resolve your hardware issues.If you still have errors or are unable to resolve your issue, search Computer Hope for info, check our on-line help overview, and check our Q&A for additional help and recommendations.Please note that if your PC is not turned on (or not connected to the Internet) at the scheduled update time, Windows will still check for updates the next time you start or restart your computer.Windows 8 (not 8.1) users must upgrade to Windows 8.1 or 10 to continue receiving security updates after 12th of January, 2016.