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Windows 7 ultimate - can a OEM key be used to activate a Retail upgrade? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Because of a dead computer I had to upgrade a windows vista system to Windows 7 ultamite.  The only thing I had in hand at the time was a used retail upgrade. The original vista OS was pre-installed on a HP laptop, so I assume it was OEM.

    I now want to activate the upgrade and I want to buy and use a OEM key.  Is it possible to do that?  I want to know so I don't go and waste my money and find out it don't work. I figure there are four outcomes, but I don't know which will happen

    1. It will work, no problem
    2. I can run the install again in place and it will work fine
    3. I have to do a clean install and rebuild the computer from the ground up
    4. It can't be done
    Tuesday, May 25, 2010 5:03 PM

Answers

  • Hello mwoplock,

    To buy and use an OEM product key (PK), by definition you would also be buying the installation disc, the Certificate of Authenticity (CoA), etc, because it is illegal to sell an OEM PK separate from the rest of the OEM licensing kit.

    Since an OEM PK will not activate a retail installation of Windows of any version or edition, you only course of action would be to backup and offload your data, do a clean installation of Windows 7 Ultimate with the (hopefully genuine!!) OEM license kit, then freshly install your programs and restore your data.


    Buy Office 2007 Now, Get Office 2010 Free http://office2010.microsoft.com/en-us/tech-guarantee/microsoft-office-2010-technology-guarantee-FX101825695.aspx?CTT=97
    Tuesday, May 25, 2010 6:09 PM

All replies

  • Hello mwoplock,

    To buy and use an OEM product key (PK), by definition you would also be buying the installation disc, the Certificate of Authenticity (CoA), etc, because it is illegal to sell an OEM PK separate from the rest of the OEM licensing kit.

    Since an OEM PK will not activate a retail installation of Windows of any version or edition, you only course of action would be to backup and offload your data, do a clean installation of Windows 7 Ultimate with the (hopefully genuine!!) OEM license kit, then freshly install your programs and restore your data.


    Buy Office 2007 Now, Get Office 2010 Free http://office2010.microsoft.com/en-us/tech-guarantee/microsoft-office-2010-technology-guarantee-FX101825695.aspx?CTT=97
    Tuesday, May 25, 2010 6:09 PM
  • "mwoplock" wrote in message news:10f77681-6043-4641-9fed-fd2acc5d83cd...
    > Because of a dead computer I had to upgrade a windows vista system to
    > Windows 7 ultamite. The only thing I had in hand at the time was a used
    > retail upgrade. The original vista OS was pre-installed on a HP laptop, so
    > I assume it was OEM.
    >
     
    You've confused me already
    what computer was dead?
    Retail upgrade for what?
    Was the HP Laptop the dead PC?
    - was the Upgrade installed on that, or another PC? (was the upgrade still
    installed in a working PC??)
     
    "I now want to activate the upgrade and I want to buy and use a OEM key."
    Why? - what was upgraded? - the Laptop?
     
    PLEASE make it easy for my limited intelligence - and name the PC's, and
    exactly the history, and then we can give some sensible answers that have a
    chance of being right!
     
     
    --
    Noel Paton
    CrashFixPC
     
    Nil Carborundum Illegitemi
    www.crashfixpc.co.uk
     
     

    Noel Paton | CrashFixPC | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | http://www.crashfixpc.co.uk
    Tuesday, May 25, 2010 6:33 PM
    Moderator
  • My appologies....

    Computer A died.  It was my work computer and it was my only way of procssing new business.  Computer A is running windows 7 ultimate and it is part of a domain. 

    I need to go to an appointment and sell, and my comptuer A is dead as I said.  My son had computer B that was running Windows vista home.  Problem is, for my biz to work, the computer has to be part of the domain.  Not possible with vista home.  So I had a windows 7 upgrade that I had used to upgrade another computer (actually I upgraded computer A with it before).  I ran the upgrade on computer B so I could put computer B on the domain and take care of business.  I had planned on putting computer b on the network eventually, figured I would do an OEM to save some money and I don't care it's tied to the computer. 

    I guess I am now forced to buy a retail version to activate it, or reinstall as OEM. 

    Friday, May 28, 2010 9:30 PM
  • "mwoplock" wrote in message news:2c18ae45-9a20-4eed-9869-48e9553a5958...
    > My appologies....
    >
    > Computer A died. It was my work computer and it was my only way of
    > procssing new business. Computer A is running windows 7 ultimate and it
    > is part of a domain.
    >
    > I need to go to an appointment and sell, and my comptuer A is dead as I
    > said. My son had computer B that was running Windows vista home. Problem
    > is, for my biz to work, the computer has to be part of the domain. Not
    > possible with vista home. So I had a windows 7 upgrade that I had used to
    > upgrade another computer (actually I upgraded computer A with it before).
    > I ran the upgrade on computer B so I could put computer B on the domain
    > and take care of business. I had planned on putting computer b on the
    > network eventually, figured I would do an OEM to save some money and I
    > don't care it's tied to the computer.
    >
    > I guess I am now forced to buy a retail version to activate it, or
    > reinstall as OEM.
    >
     
     
    Ah - it begins to make sense :)
     
    OK - a couple of points. Upgrades are all Retail - you can't buy an OEM
    Upgrade (although major manufacturers can, basically for the 'free upgrade'
    offers)
    Was Computer A an Upgrade using a Retail disk? If so, then the license for
    that can be re-used for Computer B. You may need to use Phone activation,
    rather than the auto-activation, but it shouldn't present any problem.
    If Computer A died within a year of purchase, and came preinstalled with
    Win7 - then you have grounds for a warranty claim!
     
    In your position, I'd probably opt for a Retail Full - that way I could move
    it to another machine when the laptop dies :) - and get a decent laptop
    then, without an OS, so I didn't have to uninstall all the carpware that
    comes with.
     
    HTH
     
     
     
    --
    Noel Paton
    CrashFixPC
     
    Nil Carborundum Illegitemi
    www.crashfixpc.co.uk
     
     

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC
    Saturday, May 29, 2010 5:21 AM
    Moderator
  • Thanks, that makes sense, except for the fact that computer A was fixed and is running the windows 7 that I installed on computer B.  I am going to get a OEM upgrade for computer b and hope it will install on top of the current version retail version of windows 7 and works.  I really don't want to rebuild the system.  and for $80 more, I really don't want to buy a retail version.  I guess I would rather rebuild instead of pay $80 more.

    I guess I'm just stuck...

     

    Wednesday, June 2, 2010 2:59 AM
  • There is no such thing as an OEM upgrade - and an OEM Full will Clean-Install W7 wiping the drive!


    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    Wednesday, June 2, 2010 7:28 AM
    Moderator