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Can I use a new product key with an OEM installation CD? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I recently purchased an OEM install disk for windows 7.  I now have another computer that I want to upgrade to Windows 7.  If I purchase a new product key online for the same version of windows, can I use the same OEM install disk as long as I use the new product key?  The way I see it, this would essentially be the same process large computer companies use when they clone drives with new Windows installations on them and provide a new product key to use when completing registration.  After all, its about purchasing the new license and not the installation cd, right?  Thanks for any help.

    Aaron

    Thursday, January 26, 2012 5:38 PM

Answers

  • "ahommel" wrote in message news:f16cc3be-6e42-44a9-93f7-7bba2c817551...

    I recently purchased an OEM install disk for windows 7.  I now have another computer that I want to upgrade to Windows 7.  If I purchase a new product key online for the same version of windows, can I use the same OEM install disk as long as I use the new product key?  The way I see it, this would essentially be the same process large computer companies use when they clone drives with new Windows installations on them and provide a new product key to use when completing registration.  After all, its about purchasing the new license and not the installation cd, right?  Thanks for any help.

    Aaron

    You cannot buy ‘just a Key ‘ legally anyhow – even MS don’t sell them.
    You will need to purchase an Upgrade pack – either from the MS Store (in which case you can download the disk, or get it delivered) or from a reputable store near you.

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, January 26, 2012 6:55 PM
    Thursday, January 26, 2012 5:44 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • "ahommel" wrote in message news:f16cc3be-6e42-44a9-93f7-7bba2c817551...

    I recently purchased an OEM install disk for windows 7.  I now have another computer that I want to upgrade to Windows 7.  If I purchase a new product key online for the same version of windows, can I use the same OEM install disk as long as I use the new product key?  The way I see it, this would essentially be the same process large computer companies use when they clone drives with new Windows installations on them and provide a new product key to use when completing registration.  After all, its about purchasing the new license and not the installation cd, right?  Thanks for any help.

    Aaron

    You cannot buy ‘just a Key ‘ legally anyhow – even MS don’t sell them.
    You will need to purchase an Upgrade pack – either from the MS Store (in which case you can download the disk, or get it delivered) or from a reputable store near you.

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    • Marked as answer by Darin Smith MS Thursday, January 26, 2012 6:55 PM
    Thursday, January 26, 2012 5:44 PM
    Moderator
  • OEM System Builder packs are not legitimate for end users to install on their own computers.  You should be using a full license retail copy of Windows on a custom computer for your own use.  OEM copies are only for a system builder who sells the computer to a third party.  In pertinent part, the SB license states:

    Authorized Distribution and Acceptance. To distribute the Software or Hardware in this Pack, you must be a System Builder
    and accept this license. “System Builder” means an original equipment manufacturer, an assembler, a refurbisher, or a software
    pre-installer that sells the Customer System(s) to a third party

    Since you are not in the business of building custom computers for sale to customers, you need to purchase a retail full license copy for the additional computer. 


    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.
    Thursday, January 26, 2012 8:39 PM
    Answerer
  • "Cbarnhorst" wrote in message news:45600a19-0808-4a6f-8a1e-e0567eb6c3ca...

    OEM System Builder packs are not legitimate for end users to install on their own computers.  You should be using a full license retail copy of Windows on a custom computer for your own use.  OEM copies are only for a system builder who sells the computer to a third party.  In pertinent part, the SB license states:

    Authorized Distribution and Acceptance. To distribute the Software or Hardware in this Pack, you must be a System Builder
    and accept this license. “System Builder” means an original equipment manufacturer, an assembler, a refurbisher, or a software
    pre-installer that sells the Customer System(s) to a third party

    Since you are not in the business of building custom computers for sale to customers, you need to purchase a retail full license copy for the additional computer.


    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.
     
     
    Colin – read what he said.
    He wants to use the OEM Disk, with the Upgrade/Retail Key.
    That is not a breach of licensing  in any way (though it may not be good practice).
     

    Noel Paton | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | CrashFixPC | The Three-toed Sloth
    Thursday, January 26, 2012 9:28 PM
    Moderator
  • To clarify, I have a retail OEM install disk that I bought from Office Depot.  I have a macbook that I put parallels on, which requires a OEM install of windows, and not an upgrade.  Made the installs, not problem.  So I have the disk, but I need a new product key.  I spoke with a chat technician and he told me that I could purchase a new product key online and then just download the image.  So what is the difference between using the new product key with a downloaded image or with the disk I already have.  As long as I pay for the new license for the same version, why would it matter where I got the image from?  

     

    Aaron

    Friday, January 27, 2012 2:44 PM
  • The problem is there are bogus key sales all over the internet. The closest you can get legitimately is to buy from the microsoft store. It comes with a key sent to your email with a choice of a download and/or a dvd sent to you. You don't have to use the media. (not recommended.)

     

    Additional info:

     

     

    Product keys are never sold separately by Microsoft. If you see a listing on an auction site, online classified ad, or other online page advertising product keys for sale, it’s a good indication that the keys are likely stolen or counterfeit. If you were to purchase and use a stolen or counterfeit product key to activate Windows installed on your PC, the key may not work for activation, may already be in use on another PC, or it might be blocked from use later by Microsoft when the key is reported stolen.

     


    Friday, January 27, 2012 3:32 PM
    Answerer
  • To clarify, I have a retail OEM install disk

    You are confused.  There is no such thing as a "retail OEM" disk.  The licensing terms "retail" and "OEM" refer to completely different license types, each having their own rights and restrictions.  "Retail" in this context does not refer to how you a buy the product.  It refers to the rights and restrictions associated with the license's use.  Who can install the software and whether or not the software is transferrable to a different computer are important differences between the two license types.

    Retail outlets do sell OEM System Builder packs for small system builders, like a local computer shop, to use to install OEM Windows on custom computers they build for sale to their customers.  OEM packs are not intended for end users and are priced so that system builders can make a small profit. 

    Retail copies are what the Microsoft Store sells and what you get when you buy a boxed copy of Windows.  Retail copies can be either Upgrade copies or full license copies.  The Microsoft Store does not sell OEM System Builder packs so if you were talking to someone at the Microsoft Store the agent was not talking about OEM.  The agent was talking about Retail.

    If you run the MGADiag report it will show the license type.  OEM System Builder will show as

    Windows Product ID Type: 3
    Windows License Type: System Builder

    and Retail will show as

    Windows Product ID Type: 5
    Windows License Type: Retail

    That is why there is no such thing as "retail OEM".

    Parallels requires a Type 5: Retail product key, not an OEM key.  It would be a licensing error to use an OEM key. 

    What the agent told you was that you have to purchase Windows to get a new product key.  Whether or not you download the image is up to you, but you are paying for it either way.  Personally, I recommend that you download both the 32bit and 64bit .iso files and then burn them to dvd and store the dvds for future use.  They are yours.  You are paying for them.


    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 6GB ram.

    Friday, January 27, 2012 3:56 PM
    Answerer
  • Good answer,

    Very well said, and makes perfect sense.  Now that we have the nomanclature cleared up, it appears that I have a "Full Retail License Copy" disk and not an OEM disk.  With that said, the question remains, can I use the  "Full License Copy" combined with a genuine Microsoft product key purchased from the Microsoft Store online?  This way I do not have to worry about burning the image to a disk or making sure its bootable, especially since I don't own any good software for doing so.  Thanks for your help on  this matter.

     

    Aaron

    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 2:15 PM
  • Yes, no problem.
    Noel Paton | CrashFixPC | Nil Carborundum Illegitemi | www.crashfixpc.co.uk
    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 2:27 PM
  • Hold on.. microsoft used to sell a windows disk in the pc emulator software package... It was required because special windows drivers were needed for the mac computer hardware. Mac hardware drivers were not in the windows install disk. Device manager errors if you tried to install retail windows disk on a mac. So they were slip streamed into the windows disk. This applied to old power pc processor macs. This may have all changed now. The windows disks were unique to mac. They also came with the xp keys. At first I thought this was an oem custom disk.. but not sure what they called it. I have plugged mac hardware into windows pc: keyboard, mouse, etc and windows has to download the drivers from the internet. Mac drivers are not already in the windows local computer data base or install disk. I asked apple about my intel mac and boot camp and they said I need to purchase my own windows disk and key.
    Thursday, April 11, 2013 2:54 AM
  • That is irrelevant to the question, even on a Mac these days.  With the Intel Macs the user must supply his own retail copy of Windows whether using Bootcamp to create a true PC partition or with one of the virtualization programs like Parallels.  What Apple now provides are the Apple PC drivers for Mac for installation on Windows once Windows is installed using Bootcamp. 

    Regardless of the brand of computer, the user may install Windows on any computer or virtual machine using a retail or OEM dvd and a retail product key just fine.  The only requirement is that the product key must be for the same edition of Windows (Home, Pro, whatever) that is being installed from the dvd.  What does not work are manufacturer supplied recovery disks.  Upgrade product keys also will not work unless a copy of Windows eligible for upgrade is already installed on the computer.


    Colin Barnhorst Windows 7 Ultimate x64 on DIY with 8GB ram.

    Thursday, April 11, 2013 3:55 AM
    Answerer