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How to find Vista Activation code on a dead laptop RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,

    I have an employee that was loaned a laptop with XP installed.  I received it back, dead, after they spilled coffee all over it.  Upon examining the laptop I find Vista installed.  I am pretty sure that it is not a valid copy of Vista and that goes against our companies SOP's (the porn I found didn't help either).  I have the hard drive out and hooked up to my desktop via USB.  Is there any way for me to determine if it is valid or not.  Can I get the activation code off the HDD and have MS check it out?  If this is in fact not a valid copy of Vista and I have proof, then I can go forward with the next appropriate steps against the employee.  Thank you.

    Thursday, February 14, 2008 7:44 PM

Answers

  • While Microsoft can not endorse what JDCMAN is suggesting, I believe it may work. And once you get the key, you can do an internet search for the Product Key, If it is listed on any websites, then the key is either a:

     

    1) Retail key that was leaked to the internet.

    or

    2) OEM SLP key used in the OEM Hack that makes Vista think that it was pre-installed on a computer built by a large computer manufaturer. Vista looks for the specal code in the motherboard bios, but the request is redirected to a driver that mimics the specal code and Vista Self-Activates

     

    Either way, you know that the Vista install Non-Genuine and was Pirated.

     

     

    Thank you,

    Darin Smith

    WGA Forum Manager

    Thursday, February 14, 2008 11:33 PM

All replies

  • If you're on a functioning windows install, you can use Magic Jellybean Keyfinder to get the key. It's a freeware, unsupported beta application that uses methods detailed in Microsoft KB articles to get the key. File -> Load Hive in the app, browse to the Windows directory of the dead Vista install, and it should tell you the key.

    Thursday, February 14, 2008 8:43 PM
  • While Microsoft can not endorse what JDCMAN is suggesting, I believe it may work. And once you get the key, you can do an internet search for the Product Key, If it is listed on any websites, then the key is either a:

     

    1) Retail key that was leaked to the internet.

    or

    2) OEM SLP key used in the OEM Hack that makes Vista think that it was pre-installed on a computer built by a large computer manufaturer. Vista looks for the specal code in the motherboard bios, but the request is redirected to a driver that mimics the specal code and Vista Self-Activates

     

    Either way, you know that the Vista install Non-Genuine and was Pirated.

     

     

    Thank you,

    Darin Smith

    WGA Forum Manager

    Thursday, February 14, 2008 11:33 PM