Windows XP Re-use RRS feed

  • Question

  • Just recently my laptop "died" on me. In short apparently there was a short circuit or a power surge that affected my laptop, to the point where now I dont even get the BIOS startup much less able to access any other program on my laptop. It is stuck on a perpetual loop.
    I am looking into purchasing a laptop either new or refurbished, however I personally do not like the concept of working with Windows Vista (its just not as user friendly to me as my Windows XP, though I know that there are people out there who swear by WV I personally want to stick with WXP. Thats where my question comes in if I have to "downgrade" to XP (I personally think and believe its an UPGRADE from WV) can I reuse the old license that I had since my Hardrive got fried and since it (the License) wont be literally used in two computers only on one.
    How can I accomplish this?
    Thanks for any and all input.

    Wednesday, February 25, 2009 6:34 PM


  • Hello Ecoemt,

    Thank you for visiting the Windows Genuine Advantage program forum. Licensing questions fall outside the WGA Program support scope as well as our expertise. Unfortunately in your situation more than likely you would not be allowed to re-use your OEM-SLP laptop licensing. Below is a brief regarding what OEM-SLP means:  

    OEM licenses obtained thru a major manufacturer use a SLP technology.   Computers built by large commercial manufacturers that come with Vista Pre-installed come with two (2) Product Keys; SLP and COA Key.  SLP stands for System Locked Pre-install. OEM manufacturer’s add an OEM identifier string to the system BIOS during manufacturing. Windows verifies this identifier during the boot process. In this way the end user will not be required to activate Windows. The OEM SLP Key is geared to work with the special instructions found on that Manufacturer’s computer hardware.  The Product Key is available on the COA sticker and not installed in the computer. For example all DELL OEM SLP Windows Vista systems use a single product key but the COA sticker on the machine contains the unique COA. The key located on the COA sticker should only be used in limited situations and requires telephone activation. Example should you require to reformate the computer the key from the COA sticker would be used. 

    What happens if the motherboard becomes defective?  Please contact your manufacturer’s technical support for guidance especially since your system is a Laptop vs. a desktop. You are permitted to change it and reinstall your OEM XP license to it.  You should replace it with an identical board or the manufacturer's designated replacement. OEM licenses obtained thru a major manufacturer that uses SLP technology set the recovery or repair CD to look for certain bits in the BIOS of the official manufacturer's motherboards.  If such bits are not found, as they would not be if you replaced the defective board with one not from the original computer manufacturer, then the CD will refuse to install Windows XP.   Licensing links are posted below where you can address any concerns and question. 

    Questions regarding Software Licensing Terms can be found at the following link:


    Additional Licensing Information:

    For licensing questions, please call 1-800-426-9400 (select option 4), Monday through Friday, 6:00 A.M. to 5:30 P.M. (PST) to speak directly to a Microsoft licensing specialist.

    Take care,


    Stephen Holm
    • Marked as answer by Stephen Holm Wednesday, February 25, 2009 7:05 PM
    Wednesday, February 25, 2009 7:05 PM