Vista Business -> XP Professional Downgrade RRS feed

  • Question


    Hopefully I am posting in the correct place.


    My business has been purchasing consoles for some time that come preloaded with XP. For the first time this week, we've had to switch to Vista Business systems.


    So far I've downgraded one of the systems using a product key that we already had in use, and I called the MS activation line to explain my situation, ready to provide a vista product key. The problem is that the representative that I was talking to refused the Vista Business key, and just reactivated the old key. I tried to clarify, but they didn't seem to understand that I wasn't try to reactivate the old Windows XP product key, I was trying to downgrade. I spent about 15 minutes trying to help them understand, but it didn't take, so I gave up. Now, this wouldn't be a problem for me if I were just doing a few systems, but because of the volume we are doing, I'd rather be doing things properly and legitimately. Should I have perhaps asked for a supervisor?


    Despite being a gold partner, our OEM has denied any responsability or knowledge on the downgrade process, so we've decided to take care of it ourselves.


    Is anyone aware of a more streamlined way to downgrade? Even something that I can say to the reps on the activation line to prompt them to perform the downgrade? Ideally, there would be a specific line that we could call for each downgrade or an email contact or even a downgrade tool.


    Thanks for whatever help or advise anyone can offer me.

    Tuesday, July 1, 2008 6:05 PM


  • London,


    You are very welcome. Hopefully I was able to point you in the right direction :-).



    Stephen Holm, MS
    WGA Forum Manager


    Wednesday, July 2, 2008 5:17 AM

All replies

  • How do I downgrade? Install a copy of Windows XP Professional with the product key that came with the copy, and then when you hit the activation screen -- which is near the end of the installation process -- select the activate by phone option rather than the online method. You'll likely end up talking with a live rep; tell him that you're downgrading from Vista to XP, and give him the Vista product key. The rep is supposed to walk you through the rest.

    Tuesday, July 1, 2008 6:42 PM
  • Thanks for your quick response.


    My post was describing my experience following that procedure. I guessed that the rep was supposed to walk me through the rest, but they wouldn't take the vista product key, and they just reactivated the XP product key that I already had. This isn't acceptable, what we're looking for is to have our licenses activated legitimately and properly to avoid problems in the future.

    Tuesday, July 1, 2008 6:52 PM
  • Hello London_TQ,


         Actually this isn't the right place. This forum was developed for  customers who have Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) issues/concerns. Unfortuantely it appears there may have been a communication problem regarding what you needed. I apologize for this inconvience and would recommend calling back. Also if you have more than one computer which may require downgrading please ask them for the proceedure/s for multi-pc Vista to XP downgrade :-). Below I have provided some sites should you not already have them pertaining to Activation. 



    Microsoft Product Activation









    Also I suggest posting your question to the Discussions in Windows XP General Forum newsgroups here:




    Next use the search box for activation or post the question here. You will receive feedback from a Microsoft MVP, forum moderator and/or volunteers. 


    Thank you,


    Stephen Holm, MS
    WGA Forum Manager

    Tuesday, July 1, 2008 11:06 PM
  • Thank you.

    Wednesday, July 2, 2008 2:07 AM
  • London,


    You are very welcome. Hopefully I was able to point you in the right direction :-).



    Stephen Holm, MS
    WGA Forum Manager


    Wednesday, July 2, 2008 5:17 AM