I have a copy of windows 7 and want XP back
I let a guy at work install a non genuine version of windows 7 on my computer, and now everything is going awry. the laptop isn't compatible with 7 it turns out, so now i want XP back. Is there something easy i can do from home (and preferrably free) to get it back to XP
If the laptop is Dell or Toshiba (and possibly some other major PC manufacturers) try and borrow a XP recovery CD from a friend or neighbour.
Or buy a recovery CD on ebay etc which is for the correct brand of laptop
These OEM recovery XP disks disks don't require activation if used on the the correct brand of PC.
(These special versions identify something in Bios or on motherboard and do not require activation)
The serial number on the Microsoft XP sticker will not activate the XP on the wrong brand of PC (applies to latter copies of OEM XP)
(I do not regard this as piracy as the XP sticker on laptop is proof of a licence to use OEM copy of XP but not Vista or 7 on the PC with the XP sticker)
Also you can usually buy a OEM XP from major PC manufacturers cheaper than a new retail copy of XP
Note you may well require a driver disk or a set of XP drivers for your laptop even if you have the correct XP recovery CD
Some recovery disks include drivers and additional software others are just XP CD
Another thing to check -- does the laptop have a hidden partition on it ? -- newer laptops now include a hidden partition on them that has a copy of the HDD as shipped from the factory and you can reset the laptop to factory condition by pressing the correct buttons during boot ( which button to press varies depending on the laptop model) - so if the laptop did not come with a recovery disk there should be a partition on the HDD that has the recovery files copied on it that can be used as long as the partition has not been deleted or reformatted.