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Using an old copy of Windows XP Pro RRS feed

  • Question

  • I purchased a copy of Windows XP Pro about five years ago, but three years ago, I got a laptop and dismantled the computer with XP Pro.  I still have the CD, though.  Can I install it on the new computer I am building?  Will I have any issues since it was once installed on a computer that hasn't been around for three years?

    Is there a set period of time that XP software has to go without being used before it can be installed on a different machine?  I assume MS doesn't have a way of knowing that my license key was formatted off the drive unless it sees it hasn't used Windows Update, etc.
    Tuesday, December 23, 2008 3:45 PM

Answers

  • Daveferg,

    It depends upon whether the copy (license) for XP Pro you purchased is a Full Retail license or a systembuilder/OEM license.

    Full retail licenses can be moved from computer to computer and activated an unlimited number of times, as long as it is installed and acticated on only one computer at any given time.

    Systembuilder/OEM licenses are "married" to the individual computer onto which they are first installed and are not permitted to be moved to any other computer.  Systembuilder/OEM licenses can be installed and activated an unlimited number of times on that same first computer.  Since a computer is just a collection of parts that can become obsolete or defective and changed and upgraded, Microsoft has decided that for the purposes of defining what is the "individual computer onto which they are first installed," the original motherboard is the base or defining component.  As long as the original motheboard is being used, all other parts can be changed or upgraded and this situation woul still qualify as "the original computer."  There is an exception that allows for the license to be transferred to another motherboard ONLY if the original motherboard becomes defective.
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    • Marked as answer by daveferg Tuesday, December 23, 2008 7:23 PM
    Tuesday, December 23, 2008 4:21 PM

All replies

  • Daveferg,

    It depends upon whether the copy (license) for XP Pro you purchased is a Full Retail license or a systembuilder/OEM license.

    Full retail licenses can be moved from computer to computer and activated an unlimited number of times, as long as it is installed and acticated on only one computer at any given time.

    Systembuilder/OEM licenses are "married" to the individual computer onto which they are first installed and are not permitted to be moved to any other computer.  Systembuilder/OEM licenses can be installed and activated an unlimited number of times on that same first computer.  Since a computer is just a collection of parts that can become obsolete or defective and changed and upgraded, Microsoft has decided that for the purposes of defining what is the "individual computer onto which they are first installed," the original motherboard is the base or defining component.  As long as the original motheboard is being used, all other parts can be changed or upgraded and this situation woul still qualify as "the original computer."  There is an exception that allows for the license to be transferred to another motherboard ONLY if the original motherboard becomes defective.
    For great advice on all topics XP, visit http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp
    • Marked as answer by daveferg Tuesday, December 23, 2008 7:23 PM
    Tuesday, December 23, 2008 4:21 PM
  • This is a retail CD purchased at Wal-Mart or Best Buy if I remember, so it should be fine.  Thanks
    Tuesday, December 23, 2008 7:23 PM