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Fresh Windows install on a new laptop

I have never purchased a laptop before, only built my own systems at home. Before I make my purchase, I have a couple of questions.

Do most laptops come with an OEM Windows 7 disc? I'd like to be able to do a fresh install and wipe all of the junk that will inevitably be pre-installed on the laptop. I've even heard of junk software that is somehow intertwined with the Windows installation that forces the user to update drivers, etc. only through the software itself; sometimes it doesn't even allow the latest drivers. I'd like to avoid all of this and work with the barest possible system and build it up myself.

If Windows 7 discs sometimes do not come, I'm assuming that I will have a valid OEM serial that is tied to a plain copy of Windows 7 (that is, not riddled with laptop software). Would I be able to download a copy off of Microsoft's site and input that serial when I'm prompted?
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  1. You need the OEM Pro windows 7, that does not have a bunch of junk attached to it, and minimal drivers included. It can be bought from "Digital River"
    If you have a student e mail from a college or school, it costs about $40 including the backup disk.
    Downloading over the internet, it allows you to copy the file onto a DVD and load it.
    I used the $40 downloaded version, but did not install all the updates, I blocked automatic updates, and turned off the "windows notifier" which drives me crazy, it's increasingly irritating.
    I use Panda for security instead of whatever security Microsoft provides and updates. It also replaces the microsoft firewall. It has less surprises than Microsoft updates, such as: sudden unexpected loss of drivers. (this is a common problem when using automatic updates on SOME computers) Or, "automatic installation of "features" that I don't know about, or want.
    The third party security is better than what MS provides...and runs faster than the "security updates."
    However you should be warned not to use "free" security software, downloaded from the internet. This type of software leaves your security full of holes.
  2. I have used NOD32 for the past few years and I am going to stick to that.

    I understand that I can always pay for a new disc, but the way I see it, an OEM version is already paid for by the user that buys a laptop. I have the product key; I just need the files and a legal way to obtain them without paying $40 in addition to the price of the laptop.
  3. It don't work that way, unfortunately.
  4. Can't I ask Microsoft for a cheap backup disc if I have a valid serial?

    I'm now wondering if I can just use a plain OEM Windows 7 Home disc to install and input the serial from my laptop. (I just built a computer for my brother so I have an OEM Windows 7 Home disc.) Or are the versions of Windows 7 that come pre-installed on laptops somehow different from the OEM discs that one can find on Newegg, etc.? Would my laptop's key work for this? Is this legal?
  5. Does anyone have any ideas?
  6. Hi booseek, I have a HP Dv6 laptop and after making the restore discs, they dont work!!!!!

    So downloaded the Windows 7 Home Premium iso from here :

    and after install says that this key cannot be automatically activated, have to ring the automated phone line ( really quick ) and then enter the digits told to and Voila! all good. Really pissed off that after creating the restore discs the installation always fails, so happy to be able to download the win7hp iso and re-install without all bloatware, system and me very happy :-)
  7. Hey illusio12,

    Thanks for the reply.

    Since I already have a Windows 7 Home Premium disc, would I be able to simply install from there and use the serial number from my laptop's version of Windows 7 (assuming it is also Home Premium, which most are)?
  8. @booseek
    The quick answer is yes, BUT. Yes you can, but it might not be accepted by Microsoft on validation, and even if it is validated it might be refused at the time of your first update. Do a search on "Can I use OEM software on another computer." If you wish you could ask the laptop manufacturer for a disk, but be prepared to pay. Or you could make back up DVD's of the system first in case it doesn't work. But OEM versions of Windows are tied to the manufacturer and the motherboard of the original computer. It is possible to remove most if not all of the manufacturers software if you are careful.
    But by far the best way is to purchase a genuine full copy of Windows and do a clean install of that. Save any files that you have first though.
  9. Are you saying that the content of the OEM disc is different? I thought that the difference in OEM vs. retail versions was the packaging and activation keys. I thought that the activation key was what told Windows which version it is.

    Again, I'm asking about using the OEM disc to install, but using my laptop's serial when prompted for the activation code. I am not using the OEM disc's serial.
  10. Yes I am saying that OEM disks differ according to the manufacturer. If the manufacturer of the computer that gave you the OEM disk matches the manufacturer of the laptop you MAY be able to use it. But you may still fail when you attempt the first update of Windows.
    An OEM version of Windows IS tied to a particular computer that it is sold with. If you do not like that purchase a full genuine copy of Windows that IS licensed for ANY computer.
  11. The OEM disc that I have is not from any computer manufacturer -- it came from Newegg, as I built a computer for my brother from scratch a few months ago. So I will be using the activation code of the pre-installed Windows 7 from the laptop after installing from the OEM disc that I bought from Newegg.

    I know that my brother's OEM disc is not tied to his computer, or any computer for that matter -- just the serial code that came with it. The question that I now have is whether or not the laptop's serial number will work when I use his OEM disc to re-install windows on the laptop. I'm just using the disc for the files, as I have my own code (from the laptop), as I don't wish to go through making an ISO when I have the disc lying around.
  12. Hi booseek, should work, but may need to activate in same way as i had to! As i see it, your key is valid, your oem disk is valid! Install and then activate however it tells you too, as long as your installing onto laptop again, should not be a problem.

    Good luck and let us know how it works out :-)
  13. Best answer
    Your link shows that the copy of Windows you purchased was, Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM. Please note OEM. Original Equipment Manufacturer. Or if you like in your case, not manufacturer of computers just a sale of some sort of computer equipment like say a graphics card. But in the end it means exactly the same. So what you are attempting to do is use an OEM version disk that is tied to the computer you built for your brother and the OEM product key that is for the laptop which is not legal as Microsoft sees it.
    You MAY get away with it after using the telephone verification, or you MAY NOT get away with it. So it's up to you..!!
    But, I would make absolutely sure I had a fallback by making some sort of system image or DVD backup of the laptop when I first start it up, just in case. After that it's your problem not ours.
    See this Microsoft Answers post by Carey Frisch.
  14. Thank you.

    I was not aware that it is illegal to use an OEM disc if you have another valid product code, especially if you are not using the product code from the OEM disc. Microsoft does, in fact, provide ISOs of their discs free of charge -- it's just that they cannot be used if you do not have a valid serial, which I will have after buying the laptop. I am not moving any licenses, etc., but simply using the files from the disc to install, then inputting my new license after the install. There will still be two licenses, not shared, both legal.

    I will make a DVD backup first if the laptop does not come with one already.
  15. Best answer selected by booseek.
  16. I know that we tend not to read them, or print them out but the t&c's are there to let you know precisely what you can or cannot do. OEM t&c's are restrictive. If you want to install a copy of Windows on another computer then use that computers product key you need a full genuine copy of Windows. See Carey Frisch. "Yes, it will work. A generic Windows 7 DVD has the ability to unlock the OEM license if you use an OEM license."
    Carey Frisch

    I just don't want to see you lose your copy of Windows by mistake.
  17. You can however, use the product key from your laptop with any 64-bit OEM Windows 7 DVD.
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