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  • Question

  • hello all.

     

    I had a dell computer, but I upgraded my motherboard and CPU, but forgot to get an operating system. I tried installing with a copy that I knew was used on numerous other systems, in hopes that I could use the cdkey on my case, but it dosent work, it says invalid.. Is there any way I could use the key on my case for my current copy?

    Tuesday, August 22, 2006 6:14 AM

Answers

  • e6300,

    The license for Windows that came with you Dell computer is an OEM license that is valid ONLY on the computer onto which it is first installed.

    For the purposes of defining what a "computer" is, since any computer is just a collection of parts, MS has established that the motherboard is the base or foundation component.  If the motherboard is changed, then by definition a new computer is created. 

    There is an exception to this policy to accommodate situations where a motherboard becomes defective and has to be replaced.  If the computer whose motherboard becomes defective is a name brand computer whose manufacturers as a rule use SLP to lock their Recovery solutions to their hardware, the end user must purchase the designated replacement motherboard from the name brand manufacturer in order to continue to be able to use the SLP-locked Operating System CD or Recovery Partition.  If the computer needing the motherboard replacement was assembled by a systembuilder/OEM, then the genuine MS XP CDROM given to the end user as a required component of the Operating System license can still be used to install the Operating System onto the repaired computer, and the end user may find it necessary to conduct a telephone activation if automated activation refuses to activate the existing installation of the Operating System.

    By upgrading the motherboard and processor (specifically the motherboard), you have for the purposes of licesning created a new computer that is not a Dell.  Therefore, you will not be able to use the previous license that came with the Dell.

    If the old motherboard is still functional, it is still licensed to run XP.

    Tuesday, August 22, 2006 4:06 PM

All replies

  • e6300,

    The license for Windows that came with you Dell computer is an OEM license that is valid ONLY on the computer onto which it is first installed.

    For the purposes of defining what a "computer" is, since any computer is just a collection of parts, MS has established that the motherboard is the base or foundation component.  If the motherboard is changed, then by definition a new computer is created. 

    There is an exception to this policy to accommodate situations where a motherboard becomes defective and has to be replaced.  If the computer whose motherboard becomes defective is a name brand computer whose manufacturers as a rule use SLP to lock their Recovery solutions to their hardware, the end user must purchase the designated replacement motherboard from the name brand manufacturer in order to continue to be able to use the SLP-locked Operating System CD or Recovery Partition.  If the computer needing the motherboard replacement was assembled by a systembuilder/OEM, then the genuine MS XP CDROM given to the end user as a required component of the Operating System license can still be used to install the Operating System onto the repaired computer, and the end user may find it necessary to conduct a telephone activation if automated activation refuses to activate the existing installation of the Operating System.

    By upgrading the motherboard and processor (specifically the motherboard), you have for the purposes of licesning created a new computer that is not a Dell.  Therefore, you will not be able to use the previous license that came with the Dell.

    If the old motherboard is still functional, it is still licensed to run XP.

    Tuesday, August 22, 2006 4:06 PM
  • That solves my problem I guess I'll have to go buy a new copy of windows tomorrow.

    Saturday, February 3, 2007 7:21 AM
  • AndrewDW,

    The original question had to do with an OEM XP license.  If your XP license is a retail license, the info in the answer does NOT apply and you can move your license from one computer to another.

    Also, the original question had to do with an upgraded motherboard.  If your situation is a defective motherboard, then you still have a valid OEM XP license and don't have to spend money on another license.  What to do next depends upon what materials you have to work with to reinstall XP.

    Saturday, February 3, 2007 4:56 PM
  •  

    This is my situation.  I have a copy of XP that was installed on a Core-2 Duo machine.  It was trashed by lightning.  I purchased a Core-2 Quad and the license key is no longer valid.  What do I do?  Switch to Linux?
    Tuesday, April 8, 2008 2:37 AM