Putting My Windows XP on my new machine, because my old machine doesn't work anymore RRS feed

  • Question

  • Can I install my Windows XP Home edition on my new machine ? My old Laptop has died completely and can't access any info on the hard drive. I have my Windows XP CD and Product Key, would it be ok just to format my new laptop hard drive and install my Windows XP on it instead of having Vista on ?
    Friday, September 16, 2011 2:06 PM


  • The vast majority of the time, Windows operating systems installed on laptops are OEM licensed, meaning that the Windows license is from the manufacturer of the laptop and the license is valid ONLY on that exact laptop.  OEM licenses are not permitted to be moved to any other computer.


    So, if the Windows XP Home CD and product key are from the laptop, then it's a virtual certainty that it is an OEM license; if so, then No, you are not permitted by the End User Licensing Agreement to do so.


    If the Certificate of Authenticity is affixed to the computer and on the second line (under the product name which would be Windows XP Home Edition) has either "OEM Product" or "OEM Software", or has the laptop manufacturer's name, then this is OEM software.


    If the Windows license is a retail license, then you can move the license from the laptop to another computer.


    Regarding the newer laptop that came with Windows Vista, if this laptop came with an OEM license for Vista, then the Software Licensing Terms do allow you to conduct a "downgrade installation" which effectively allows you to install a previous Windows version on the computer under the license for Vista that came with the computer.

    If that's the case, then you can install XP on the laptop as a downgrade from Vista, and not as a transfer of the OEM license for XP from the old laptop to the new laptop.

    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Tuesday, September 20, 2011 9:43 PM
    Friday, September 16, 2011 5:37 PM