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XP Product Key Does Not Work RRS feed

  • Question

  • I had my computer rebuilt (everything but the box!) about 2 years ago.  When the shop reinstalled Windows, I am assume he used a newer version of XP and my product key on the side of my computer.  Since that time my computer has gotten seriously bogged down and my current project is to re-image the PC.  So I have all my stuff backed up and when I put in my Windows XP CD, it says it's the version running on my computer is newer than the one on my CD.  So, I borrowed my father's Windows re-install CD and attempted the same process.  I get the same response, however it allows me to take the next steps and enter my product key.  This is when I get the error saying that the product key is invalid.  How can my product key be invalid?  I am using an XP Home key for XP Home, so it's not Home/Pro issue.  Is it possible someone used my key on another computer and it's no longer valid?
    Monday, March 22, 2010 8:46 PM

Answers

  • Hello link larken,

    You wrote, "So I have all my stuff backed up and when I put in my Windows XP CD, it says it's the version running on my computer is newer than the one on my CD."

    You get this error message when you try to repair a Windows installation that is at a higher service pack level than the disc being used.

    Work around this by choosing to boot from the disc, and then choose to install a fresh copy of Windows.  Delete existing partition(s), make a new one, choose to long format it in NTFS, then install XP onto this freshly formatted partition.

    If your CoA has "OEM Product" or "OEM Software" on the second line, then the only disc that should be used is the systembuilder/OEM/small manufacturer genuine Microsoft hologrammed disc that has "For distribution only with a new PC" and "For product support, contact the manufacturer of your PC" engraved in the upper left quadrant of the hologram.

    Monday, March 22, 2010 10:56 PM

All replies

  • Hello link larken,

    You wrote, "So I have all my stuff backed up and when I put in my Windows XP CD, it says it's the version running on my computer is newer than the one on my CD."

    You get this error message when you try to repair a Windows installation that is at a higher service pack level than the disc being used.

    Work around this by choosing to boot from the disc, and then choose to install a fresh copy of Windows.  Delete existing partition(s), make a new one, choose to long format it in NTFS, then install XP onto this freshly formatted partition.

    If your CoA has "OEM Product" or "OEM Software" on the second line, then the only disc that should be used is the systembuilder/OEM/small manufacturer genuine Microsoft hologrammed disc that has "For distribution only with a new PC" and "For product support, contact the manufacturer of your PC" engraved in the upper left quadrant of the hologram.

    Monday, March 22, 2010 10:56 PM
  •  So, I borrowed my father's Windows re-install CD and attempted the same process.This is when I get the error saying that the product key is invalid.  How can my product key be invalid?  I am using an XP Home key for XP Home, so it's not Home/Pro issue.  Is it possible someone used my key on another computer and it's no longer valid?


    It seems likely that between your Father's XP disk and your Product Key, one of them is Retail and the other is OEM.  an OEM Product Key won't work in Retail software and Retail keys won't work in OEM Software.

    My recommendation is the same as Dan has posted:

    Work around this by choosing to boot from the disc, and then chose to install a fresh copy of Windows.  Delete existing partition(s), make a new one, choose to long format it in NTFS, then install XP onto this freshly formatted partition.

    Just be sure to use your XP disk, not your father's.

     

    Thank you,

     


    Darin MS
    Thursday, March 25, 2010 9:09 PM