locked
Windows Product Key RRS feed

  • Question

  • I have a customer who was experiencing hardware problems which required replacing, now I am attempting to reinstall Windows XP on the machine. The customer lost his product key when moving house and as it was imposible to boot up his computer I was unable to retrieve the key using key finding tools, so I had to put his hard drive in a caddy and use loadhive to view registry information in C:\WINDOWS\system32\config\software and decrypt a registry key whithin that to obtain his product key. The computer appeared to have XP Pro installed but the key I managed to decrypt doesn't work with a OEM copy of Pro or Home editions. Is there anyway of finding out what version of windows the key is for with just the key itself? Thanks.

    Friday, February 6, 2009 4:10 PM

Answers

  • Hi,

    Owainbaber unforutnately I don't have an email address. Curious pull up your favorite search engine and search for the Product Key which you able to extracted. See how many hits you receive on this particular product key. The product key could be a Volume License Key (VLK) possibly used for installing say like Windows XP Professional. 

    There are situations which can cause Microsoft XP or Office to become non-genuine. Let me give one example.  Customers have taken in their systems along with all the software received when purchasing their system. The customer picks up the system and viola' no problems whatsoever until they need to download an update or even a template used with MS Office. Suddenly their system is non-genuineThe customer's computer was not installed with their software but a blocked version of a Product Key. Also the software could work for several weeks, months or even a year or more then suddenly becomes blocked. Volume licensing (VLK) are purchased/issued to large corporations, governments, and schools for example in order to make software installation easier for the mass computers located within their areas. In turn if the key becomes compromised then the government, school etc requests Microsoft to block that Product Key and re-issue another Product Key. 

    The customer should have been given an options to Get Genuine after running attempting to validate their Windows. The customer can purchase a Windows Genuine Advantage "WGA" Kit for half of what Windows XP originally cost. This may be your customer's best option. Another option is to purchase Vista  OEM System Builder. First I would recommend to make sure the customer's hardware is ready and capable for running Vista. 

    Take Owainbaber and hopefully I have been able to provide you with further guidance surrounding what your customer is currently experiencing.


    Stephen


    Stephen Holm
    • Marked as answer by Stephen Holm Friday, February 6, 2009 11:15 PM
    • Edited by Stephen Holm Monday, February 9, 2009 5:41 PM made change
    Friday, February 6, 2009 11:14 PM

All replies

  •  Hello Owainbaber,

    I have a couple questions for you surrounding the system.

    - Was the computer built by a major manufacturer such as Dell
    - Was the computer built by a local business "i.e. clone system". 
    - You mention OEM copy...Do you mean the customer had previously purchased an OEM System Builder version of Windows XP?
    - Does the computer have a Certificate of Authenticity "COA" sticker located an the computer? 


    If the computer was manufactured by a major manufacturer have the customer contact their respective Technical Support and request the Recovery Software for the make/model of system. Should the customer have purchased an OEM System Builder version have then look @ the following Knowledge Base (KB) article for potential assistance:  

    KB326246 - How to replace Microsoft software or hardware, order service packs and product upgrades, and replace product manuals

    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/326246


    Take care,

    Stephen

    Stephen Holm
    Friday, February 6, 2009 7:55 PM
  • Hi,

    to answer your questions,

    The computer was not built by a major manufacturer,
    It looks as though the customer has bought it from a OEM system builder or built it at home (probably not at home because I would have thought if it was that it wouldn't have been brought to me to fix),
    The customer does not have a COA stuck on it, but i am assuming it is an OEM copy, although the product key I got from it doesn't work with either an OEM XP pro or Home edition.
    I'll have to advise him to purchase a copy of XP, but I am just wondering how I've extracted a product key from it that doesn't work. If you have an email that I could send the product key to that isn't going to be published for everybody to see i'll send it for your thoughts on what version it relates to, if it's possible to tell, otherwise i'll just have get my customer to buy another copy.

    Thanks for answering my original post,

    owainbaber
    Friday, February 6, 2009 10:14 PM
  • Hi,

    Owainbaber unforutnately I don't have an email address. Curious pull up your favorite search engine and search for the Product Key which you able to extracted. See how many hits you receive on this particular product key. The product key could be a Volume License Key (VLK) possibly used for installing say like Windows XP Professional. 

    There are situations which can cause Microsoft XP or Office to become non-genuine. Let me give one example.  Customers have taken in their systems along with all the software received when purchasing their system. The customer picks up the system and viola' no problems whatsoever until they need to download an update or even a template used with MS Office. Suddenly their system is non-genuineThe customer's computer was not installed with their software but a blocked version of a Product Key. Also the software could work for several weeks, months or even a year or more then suddenly becomes blocked. Volume licensing (VLK) are purchased/issued to large corporations, governments, and schools for example in order to make software installation easier for the mass computers located within their areas. In turn if the key becomes compromised then the government, school etc requests Microsoft to block that Product Key and re-issue another Product Key. 

    The customer should have been given an options to Get Genuine after running attempting to validate their Windows. The customer can purchase a Windows Genuine Advantage "WGA" Kit for half of what Windows XP originally cost. This may be your customer's best option. Another option is to purchase Vista  OEM System Builder. First I would recommend to make sure the customer's hardware is ready and capable for running Vista. 

    Take Owainbaber and hopefully I have been able to provide you with further guidance surrounding what your customer is currently experiencing.


    Stephen


    Stephen Holm
    • Marked as answer by Stephen Holm Friday, February 6, 2009 11:15 PM
    • Edited by Stephen Holm Monday, February 9, 2009 5:41 PM made change
    Friday, February 6, 2009 11:14 PM