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I have a copy of Windows 7 which I installed on a laptop, which has since broke. Can I contact Microsoft and get them to do an over-the-phone activation if I explain that the laptop has broken and I would like to use the operating system on my new RRS feed

  • Question

  • I am running Windows 7 Home Premium on my new machine, but the upgrade was for Windows 7 Professional (which, as you may know, comes with the added advantage of being able to use Windows XP Mode). I plan to dual-boot Professional and Home Premium side-by-side. (I have already created the partition).

    Will Microsoft do an over-the-phone activation if I explain that the computer is broken and the drive was formatted? Thanks.

    -EDIT-

    I have old computers (running XP) around the house just kicking their heels, which are genuine and activated. So I do have a legal copy.

    • Edited by TobyShrive Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:03 AM
    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 10:53 PM

Answers

  • I found this source which says you can use an upgrade license to do just that. 

    http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9139837/Windows_7_install_trick_saves_up_to_100 and it is also apparently legal, according to PC World Magazine http://www.pcworld.com/article/174710/microsoft_says_windows_7_install_workaround_is_legal.html

    No, that is not what it says.  Please re-read the first line from the 2nd link you posted (I bolded the importent bit)

         "Microsoft today confirmed that users can apply a workaround trick to do a clean install of Windows 7 on a blank hard drive as long as they toe the licensing line".

    The License for a Windows Upgrade says that to Upgrade you must have a older version of Windows to Upgrade From and when you do an upgrade, you "Consume" the license for that older version of Windows (meaning once you upgrade, that older Windows can no longer be used).

    So even if you use the workaround "Trick", you still need to follow the Licensing and that means:

    A) you must be in possession of an older version of Windows

    and

    B) once you upgrade, that older version of Windows can no longer be used.


    Thank you,

    Darin MS





    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:43 PM

All replies

  • An upgrade version of Windows 7 Professional can only be used to upgrade from an existing Windows XP, Vista, or Windows 7 Home Premium installation.  You cannot use it on a separate partition to dual-boot unless one of those operating systems are installed on the same partition.

    Carey Frisch

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:04 PM
    Moderator
  • "TobyShrive" wrote in message news:2216b42b-5d89-4a96-9386-de28d3ea7dc2...
    I am running Windows 7 Home Premium on my new machine, but the upgrade was for Windows 7 Professional (which, as you may know, comes with the added advantage of being able to use Windows XP Mode). I plan to dual-boot Professional and Home Premium side-by-side. (I have already created the partition).

    Will Microsoft do an over-the-phone activation if I explain that the computer is broken and the drive was formatted? Thanks.
     
     
    You cannot use an Upgrade License without something to upgrade from – and your Home Premium license is already in use, and cannot be used as the qualifying license on a dualboot machine where it’s also one of the boots.
    You could try selling your Upgrade on eBay and replacing it with a Full Retail license.
     
     

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:05 PM
    Moderator
  • Actually there is a way to do as you propose but it requires a third license.  If you have a retail full license copy of Windows, XP, Vista, or Windows 7, that is no longer in use on any computer you can assign it as the copy of Windows you are upgrading from.  This is not something you do during installation.  It is done at the time of activation.  It cannot be an OEM copy from another computer.

    Do the installation on the second partition as normal.  Start your computer, insert the dvd at the desktop, and select Install Now.  You will be doing a Custom Install and you will select the second partition as the target.  Uncheck the "activate the first time I get on the internet" box.  After the installation, activate by choosing the phone activation method.  Do not respond to the audio prompts until asked if you wish to talk to an agent and then say yes.  Tell the agent what you are doing and he should give you activation codes.  This procedure is called assigning a license.

    Setup will find the Home Premium and permit the upgrade but that does not mean you have to use the Home Premium license as the one to be superceded by the Professioal Upgrade license if you have a different license available to use for the upgrade instead.  There is no requirement that the license being upgraded has to be a license for a copy of Windows already installed on the computer.  That is simply the commonest scenario, but not the only one.  The requirement is simply that you own a license eligible for upgrade to Windows 7 Professional.

    Since the HP license will not be the one superceded its license will remain valid for further use.  The assigned license then becomes the one you cannot use again.

    If need be you can purchase a retail copy of XP Home on eBay and then put it on your shelf and just leave it there.  I have done that.  The software does not have to be installed anywhere.


    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.


    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:22 PM
    Answerer
  • I found this source which says you can use an upgrade license to do just that. 

    http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9139837/Windows_7_install_trick_saves_up_to_100 and it is also apparently legal, according to PC World Magazine http://www.pcworld.com/article/174710/microsoft_says_windows_7_install_workaround_is_legal.html

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:23 PM
  • Those methi=ods reuire that a VALID, QUALUIFYING License is held for the proposed install - the OEM License does not count in this case, as it is already in use on the original install.

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:40 PM
    Moderator
  • I found this source which says you can use an upgrade license to do just that. 

    http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9139837/Windows_7_install_trick_saves_up_to_100 and it is also apparently legal, according to PC World Magazine http://www.pcworld.com/article/174710/microsoft_says_windows_7_install_workaround_is_legal.html

    No, that is not what it says.  Please re-read the first line from the 2nd link you posted (I bolded the importent bit)

         "Microsoft today confirmed that users can apply a workaround trick to do a clean install of Windows 7 on a blank hard drive as long as they toe the licensing line".

    The License for a Windows Upgrade says that to Upgrade you must have a older version of Windows to Upgrade From and when you do an upgrade, you "Consume" the license for that older version of Windows (meaning once you upgrade, that older Windows can no longer be used).

    So even if you use the workaround "Trick", you still need to follow the Licensing and that means:

    A) you must be in possession of an older version of Windows

    and

    B) once you upgrade, that older version of Windows can no longer be used.


    Thank you,

    Darin MS





    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:43 PM
  • Carey, the qualifying copy does not have to be installed on the partition first.  The user just has to own it.  The user can use a "clean" installation method.  Setup will still check the computer for a copy of Windows qualifying for upgrade but the licensing does not have to use it.  For licensing purposes it can be any qualifying copy, even one that has never been anywhere near the subject computer.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:54 PM
    Answerer
  • Noel, the qualifying copy for licensing purposes does not have the be the same copy that Setup finds already on the computer during verification.  That is just the mechanics of how the software works.  Obviously it usually is the copy whose license is being used but it does not have to be.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 11:57 PM
    Answerer
  • I never said or implied that it did :) - although I can see that it may have read that way.

    All I said was that the current license could not be used as the basis for a concurrent dual-boot with the upgrade.


    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:07 AM
    Moderator
  • Just making sure.  :)

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:11 AM
    Answerer
  • Okay :)

    So, how do I go about removing the license from an old and disused laptop? And do I need to extract the operating system and install it onto my current laptop hard disk? 
    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:12 AM
  • Carey, the qualifying copy does not have to be installed on the partition first.  The user just has to own it.  The user can use a "clean" installation method.  Setup will still check the computer for a copy of Windows qualifying for upgrade but the licensing does not have to use it.  For licensing purposes it can be any qualifying copy, even one that has never been anywhere near the subject computer.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    I have an old XP laptop which I could use. What do I need to do? Please help. I can do anything with this old laptop as I was planning to get rid of it, but if it can be used in order to install Windows 7 then I'll keep hold of it.
    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:15 AM
  • There is no procedure for removing a license.  Also, notice I said that it had to be a retail, full license copy.  I also said it could not be an OEM copy from another computer.  OEM copies cannot be transferred to a different computer.  If the software came preinstalled on the laptop by the manufacturer it is OEM and you cannot use it.  If it is a retail full licensed copy (a retail box that does not say "upgrade" on it) that you bought yourself then you can.  In that case reformat the hard drive on the old computer. Personally, I would not bother dual booting two versions of Windows 7.  There is no software advantage in doing so.  Both run the same software.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.



    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:18 AM
    Answerer
  • There is no procedure for removing a license.  Also, notice I said that it had to be a retail, full license copy.  I also said it could not be an OEM copy from another computer.  OEM copies cannot be transferred to a different computer.  If the software came preinstalled on the laptop by the manufacturer it is OEM and you cannot use it.  If it is a retail full licensed copy (a retail box that does not say "upgrade" on it) that you bought yourself then you can.  In that case reformat the hard drive on the old computer.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.


    Okay, so let's clarify the scenario and work from there (I've got myself a bit confused).

    I have a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium on my hard drive already. I have partitioned the Hard Drive so I can install Windows 7 Professional. Will this work? I don't really want to lose Home Premium. I'd rather set up a dual boot system. 

    How do I go about doing this?

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:21 AM
  • There is no procedure for removing a license.  Also, notice I said that it had to be a retail, full license copy.  I also said it could not be an OEM copy from another computer.  OEM copies cannot be transferred to a different computer.  If the software came preinstalled on the laptop by the manufacturer it is OEM and you cannot use it.  If it is a retail full licensed copy (a retail box that does not say "upgrade" on it) that you bought yourself then you can.  In that case reformat the hard drive on the old computer. Personally, I would not bother dual booting two versions of Windows 7.  There is no software advantage in doing so.  Both run the same software.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.



    Oh, and there is one advantage, which is XP mode, which isn't available on Home Premium.
    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:29 AM
  • In order to continue to use the HP you need to sacrifice the license for another copy of Windows.  That copy has to eligible for transfer to the computer even though you don't have to install it.  The only transferrable copies of Windows are retail copies.  In this scenario it has to be a full license copy.  What you need is some copy of Windows that came in a retail box that did not say Upgrade on it.  Do you have such a retail copy that you aren't using on any computer?  If not forget using an Upgrade Windows 7 Professional and use a full license copy instead.  Or don't dual boot and just upgrade normally.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:31 AM
    Answerer
  • In order to continue to use the HP you need to sacrifice the license for another copy of Windows.  That copy has to eligible for transfer to the computer even though you don't have to install it.  The only transferrable copies of Windows are retail copies.  In this scenario it has to be a full license copy.  What you need is some copy of Windows that came in a retail box that did not say Upgrade on it.  Do you have such a retail copy that you aren't using on any computer?  If not forget using an Upgrade Windows 7 Professional and use a full license copy instead.  Or don't dual boot and just upgrade normally.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    Yea I don't have a full license copy. I might just get a copy of XP and install it instead of going through with 7 with XP mode.

    Thanks for your help tonight.

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:33 AM
  • "TobyShrive" wrote in message news:56352e35-867b-4fbc-b59e-8fc1743ab472...

    Okay, so let's clarify the scenario and work from there (I've got myself a bit confused).

    I have a copy of Windows 7 Home Premium on my hard drive already. I have partitioned the Hard Drive so I can install Windows 7 Professional. Will this work? I don't really want to lose Home Premium. I'd rather set up a dual boot system.

    How do I go about doing this?

    You don’t, unless you have a Full Retail license for the second boot.
    The OEM License can only be in use in one place at any one time – if you use it as the basis for an Upgrade, you cannot also use it on its own, as the license is subsumed into the Pro Upgrade license.
     
    The Full retail license for the second boot (since you have an Upgrade to Pro) could be a Full Retail License for XP, Vista or Win7 – this license would then be subsumed into the Pro license instead of the OEM license, and would allow you to legally install the upgrade as a dual-boot with the Home Premium OEM license that came with the machine.
     

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:34 AM
    Moderator
  • Dual booting is not necessary.  Just upgrade from HP to Pro on the same partition.  Everything that runs in HP runs in Pro so what's the point of keeping HP?  You can't use them simultaeously.  And you can run XP Mode right on your Pro desktop.  If you have Pro who needs HP? You won't have to reinstall anything when you upgrade to Pro.  You'll go right on using the same programs and data. As for installing XP on the second partition, forget it.  No recent computers have XP drivers available.

    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.




    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:41 AM
    Answerer
  • "To install an upgrade version of Windows 7, Windows Vista or Windows XP must be installed on your computer. If you formatted the drive before starting the installation process, you won't be able to use the upgrade product key to activate Windows 7. To activate Windows 7, you'll  need to install your previous version of Windows, and then reinstall Windows 7."

    Ref: Windows 7 activation error: invalid product key



    Carey Frisch

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 3:07 AM
    Moderator
  • Sure.  But the license for that copy does not have to be the one retired by the upgrade license of the new copy of Windows.  If the user has another eligible license the user can substitute that one for licensing purposes and continue to use the copy of Windows installed on the computer.  The user can assign a different license than the one for the preinstalled Windows.  Your quote does say "To install...".  Licensing is not installing.  One of the problems of Microsoft's usage of "upgrade" is that it is used both as a licensing term and as an installation methodology.  The two are not actually related.  Your quotation is talking about the upgrade methodology designed into Windows 7 Setup.  Licensing does not take place at the time of installation.  It takes place at the time of activation.  That's why the OP should activate by telephone and make the licensing assignments clear to the agent.  Hopefully, Darin will comment at this point. 


    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.


    Thursday, February 16, 2012 3:31 AM
    Answerer