Vista wont accept my activation key or install an older version RRS feed

  • Question

  • I was running Windows2000 and I was having trouble getting new drivers for some of my hardware so I go down to the local computer store and the salesman talks me into buying Vista since Microsoft has now "ironed-out all the bugs".
    Since i am running Windows2000 I only need the upgrade so I buy A Home Basic Upgade.
    First off it doesnt upgrade it does a clean install. (not happy with that, now i have to reinstall everything else too).
    Then after a few weeks Explorer stops working. I updated everything and still nothing so i install Firefox.
    So this is ok for awile then i think that this is stupid why dont i just reinstall Vista like we used to have to do with the old Windows every once in a while.
    Course now comes the fun part.
    Reinstalled and it wont accept my activation key, but Explorer works now.
    I eventually figure im gonna have to reinstall Windows2000 then upgrade again to Vista hoping my key will work this way.
    Vista wont let me install an older version of Windows so i figured if I let the trial time run out it will stop working and i can install Win2000.
    Well that didnt work and now i dont even know if i can format the hard drive and start over, though i dont really want to do that.
    I will throw the computer out a window before i will pay more money for a system i am not happy with, if i cant fix this im buying a Mac.

    Does anybody have any helpful ideas?
    Wednesday, August 6, 2008 10:57 PM


  • Hello UMTaz,

      The reason your Key is not working is because it is an Upgrade Key that can only be used to Upgrade. 

      I am assuming that when you re-installed Vista that you didn't first reinstall Win2000, so that Vista could upgrade from it.  So, since there is no Win2000 to upgrade from, you didn't do an Upgrade install and the key only work for upgrades.

     Now, that being said, there is a workaround that does not involve reinstalling Win2000, please see Carey Frisch's July 31st post in thread http://forums.community.microsoft.com/en-US/search/?q=carey%20clean#page:1;sort:lastPostDesc He references a Web Page that give a very good write up on how to conduct the workaround.

    (Note: I would just post the URL, but it leads to a website that Microsoft has no affiliation with and we are not allowed to endorse or promote non-partner sites) 

    Hope that helps,
    Darin Smith
    WGA Forum Manager

    Attention Forum All Users: Please Do Not post your issue in someone else's Thread...Create your own.
    Thursday, August 7, 2008 12:04 AM