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Need Prdcut Key help

Last response: in Windows XP
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April 24, 2010 5:15:39 PM

Hello,
I have a new pc and I'm installing windows xp on to it from a previously purchase disk but I do not have the product id or key anymore I purchase the disk 2 to 3 yrs ago and have moved serveral time since then is ther any way to get the id or key w/o buy a new copy

More about : prdcut key

April 24, 2010 5:51:14 PM

Microsoft would sell you a key, but not give you one because you lost yours when you moved.
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April 24, 2010 7:20:18 PM

The product key is typically on the Certificate of Authenticity that should be a sticker on the side, back, top, or bottom of your previous computer.
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April 25, 2010 2:24:52 AM

But it's illegal to use it twice.
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April 25, 2010 2:33:28 AM

That is true. You would have to discontinue use of the operating system on your old PC.

Incidentally (and I am sure most people don't realize this), Microsoft changed their EULA back a couple of years ago, so that it now reads that the O/S is licensed to the motherboard of your computer and if you change computers or motherboards then the COA is supposed to follow that hardware to the dump.

I did not know this until a Microsoft Activation Assistant informed me of this when I was trying to reactivate Windows XP after replacing a motherboard that died.
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April 25, 2010 2:42:01 AM

But you can call them and reactivate if you change the mobo. I brought up the issue recently at another forum. So it's actually 1 license = 1 computer. :whistle: 
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April 25, 2010 2:52:06 AM

I'm reading this again. This disk was never used, correct?
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April 25, 2010 5:13:53 AM

So I thought too, but not according to the Microsoft representative I talked to (they could be wrong though).
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April 25, 2010 5:14:04 AM

I guess I'm going to have to subject myself to the tedious task of actually reading one of those judiciously crafted and utterly boring EULAs.
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April 25, 2010 5:50:35 AM

I think OP meant he bought it but didn't use it. That's possible, he bought it packaged. but that makes it impossible to find a key in a previous installation.

Phil, get back to us soon.
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April 25, 2010 1:52:39 PM

Hmmm... if he bought in packaged then the original COA might still be in the box or on the manual somewhere.
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April 25, 2010 1:54:50 PM

digitalprospecter said:
That is true. You would have to discontinue use of the operating system on your old PC.

Incidentally (and I am sure most people don't realize this), Microsoft changed their EULA back a couple of years ago, so that it now reads that the O/S is licensed to the motherboard of your computer and if you change computers or motherboards then the COA is supposed to follow that hardware to the dump.

I did not know this until a Microsoft Activation Assistant informed me of this when I was trying to reactivate Windows XP after replacing a motherboard that died.


When dealing with Microsoft don't shoot yourself in the foot, meaning don't volunteer information, just answer the questions you're asked, if I found the computer you threw in the dump with a legal license on it, I would retrieve it in a heartbeat and reuse the license.

Its kinda hard for Microsoft to take a firm stand on the licensed to motherboard concept when sometimes companies go out of business and an identical replacement motherboard is not an option anymore, they have to make provisions and allowances for that type thing.

So when Microsoft asks you, "Are you reactivating because you've had hardware failure?" Yes.

If you're upgrading and the old motherboard is still operational, and you have a morality issue feeling you'll be lying to the representative, take a drill and drill a hole through the chip set, its dead now and you're telling the truth.

When the Microsoft either automated or representative asks, "How many computers is this license installed on?" One.

Here is the main point, no matter what the EULA says, if Microsoft themselves reactivate the license for you, its a done deal and you're back in business.

Every Microsoft license I have is being run on one computer only, I've been given numerous older machines that hardware wise were junk, but they had a legitimate Microsoft operating system license on them, so before the hardware was scavenged or went in the trash, I removed the license and installed it on another machine.

And Microsoft has reactivated every one of them.

You can discuss the right and wrong of this until you're blue in the face, if someone gives you a perfectly legal license they paid for, would you really throw it in the trash, but if Microsoft chooses to reactivate the license themselves, if it was a problem to them, they would not have reactivated it, all the licenses were and are 100% legal licenses.

Software Piracy, is the real reason for most EULAs, because its an entirely illegal situation, we're talking the transfer of a 100% legal license here.

To the OP: The product key, is on the Legal Microsoft License and if you don't have that Legal license, you're flat out of luck but as far as I know the last time I checked, you can still buy a 100% legal WinXP OEM installation disk and license from Newegg.

Yep! WinXP Pro w SP3

Better hurry, don't know how much longer Newegg will still be allowed to sell it.
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April 25, 2010 3:29:30 PM

Thanks 4ryan6,

I know my suppliers are now out of XP software. My understanding is that Microsoft is still extending Volume Licensing for XP to large firms that will not / have not made the jump to Server 2008 and Windows 7.
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April 25, 2010 3:39:54 PM

It really surprises me, since Win7s release, Microsoft hasn't already completely pulled the selling plug on WinXP.
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April 25, 2010 4:22:25 PM

4Ryan6 said:
It really surprises me, since Win7s release, Microsoft hasn't already completely pulled the selling plug on WinXP.



More than they dare do until "proper" networking is easily achievable in 7. They've extended support to 2014 and until then, I'll still be advising my business customers to stay exactly where they are with XP. Windows 7 Business or Ultimate are fine for domestic use - even networking - but any office or business running more than six client boxes should remain with XP until it dies. As for Server two thousand and whatever, call me old-fashioned but I still regard the safest server package to be Suse 10.3. :D 

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April 25, 2010 9:05:27 PM

I thought XP ran about $100. Is it $200 because the SP's are all pre-installed?
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April 26, 2010 3:45:35 AM

More like exisiting copies are hard to come by now, so price is going up!
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April 26, 2010 12:58:43 PM

That is high for XP Pro, the lowest I remember it being was about 2 yrs ago around $129.99 at Newegg and XP Home was $89.00, during that time period.

As to why, IDK, guessing digitalprospecter is close with his reason.
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April 26, 2010 1:29:58 PM

Saga Lout said:

More than they dare do until "proper" networking is easily achievable in 7. They've extended support to 2014 and until then, I'll still be advising my business customers to stay exactly where they are with XP. Windows 7 Business or Ultimate are fine for domestic use - even networking - but any office or business running more than six client boxes should remain with XP until it dies. As for Server two thousand and whatever, call me old-fashioned but I still regard the safest server package to be Suse 10.3. :D 


As a general rule the majority of business's won't be jumping on the upgrade bandwagon anyway, they have adopted the, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it approach", and for past good reasons.

The entire lump sum total cost, and the massive problems that tag along, the employee training for the new OP/SYS, far outweigh the hooplah that we see here at THGF, there is a big difference from 2 or 3 machines to a business with 50 minimum machines, especially if they are task critical machines like in the hospital systems, where normal individual machine maintenance downtime is acceptable, but 10 t0 20 machines down at once is absolutely not.

Three years ago one of our local hospitals, the largest we have in our town by the way, was still running Win95 as a closed to the outside world system, because it works, and has worked since the operating system was adopted.

All the Win95 machines are isolated from internet access, they only communicate within the hospital, so the fact support for Win95 has long been dropped by MSFT, matters not to their setup and environment.

I was shocked to discover that, but it makes all the sense in the world.

Win7 is in its infancy, no matter what the flag wavers attitude is, it has to stand the test of time, Period.
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April 26, 2010 4:36:26 PM

I don't think our military has certified Vista for use yet, let alone Windows 7. They had held fast at Windows 2000 Professional, until XP had several years and a couple of service packs worth of evolution.
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April 26, 2010 11:31:42 PM

Still no word from the OP.
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April 27, 2010 4:27:59 AM

No, no word from the OP. Funny story for today though... I just drove 25 minutes each way to retrieve a valid product key from the side of a computer. I was imaging an old workstation in preparation for hardware upgrades and I forgot to write down the Producy key before i sent the computer back. When it came time to use the image, I ended up needing to do an XP repair and required the Product Key. I called the client and asked him to recite the product key to me over the phone, which he did. However, there were 7 eights and two 4's in the key and it was coming up invalid. Too many combinations of B's, 8's, 4's, and Y's to try alternate possibilities, so I drove out to the site only to discover the key he gave me was off of the Windows 98 COA on the side of the case. The XP COA was on the other side of the case. How often does that happen. Long story... yawn <grin>
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April 27, 2010 4:42:13 AM

I think you'll see a lot of businesses switch to Windows 7 within the next year. There are often bugs that need to be worked out with the original release. However, there was so much hesitation/hatred of vista, businesses are overdue for a software upgrade. The state of Texas actually banned Vista on their government PCs.
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April 27, 2010 5:36:21 PM

Here in my region of Canada, much of the Provinces Health-Care software is not supported on Vista or Windows 7 fully yet. Especially the 64-bit versions.
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