Can I install and activate Windows using the serial/sticker on the side of the case?

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by Dimsum, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. Dimsum

    Dimsum MDL Novice

    Jul 29, 2009
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    I'm planning on getting a new desktop soon, but want to immediately install linux on the main drive without messing around with partitioning or dual booting to do some stuff for a little while. It seems like all of the pre-built computers now don't come with an actual windows disc, but rather make you create restore discs or use a recovery partition.

    After i'm done with the Linux stuff and when I download a windows 7 ISO image later, can I just use my windows cd-key on the case sticker and activate it no problem?

    I know the big OEM manufacturers use a SLP key for the bulk of the installs, but we also have that sticker on the side of the case with a unique serial number. Since I have a legit copy of Windows, I would rather activate it with my own serial than using something like Daz loader. So can I use the serial on the side of the box to re-install it during the install stage and it will activate no problems? Will it matter if the ISO copy i get is either Retail or OEM?

    TL;DR: Can I install and activate Windows using the serial/sticker on the side of the case?
     
  2. ippytattoo

    ippytattoo MDL Senior Member

    Jul 17, 2008
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    The best method is as acrsn stated to make/use recovery media and leave the recovery partition entact. But if you want to get rid of the bloatware that come preinstalled from the big manufacturers I would use SLILC Dump toolkit to back up the key and certificate. After you are done with Linux use a copy of Win7, that matches what you had installed from the factory, that does not have all the bloatware. Insert the backed up key and cert and find all the needed drivers. Also you could use DAZ loader to insert the key and cert that match what you have in your BIOS and Win7 version.
     
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  3. ramses71

    ramses71 MDL Novice

    Jun 24, 2010
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    I installed Windows 7 on my PC using the original certificate. No problem, just install the same version. Now I have a PC free of all the crapware.
     
  4. Dimsum

    Dimsum MDL Novice

    Jul 29, 2009
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    Okay thanks, that clarifies things a bit better. So are you saying that the product key on the little sticker stuck on the PC is considered OEM and not Retail and will therefore not allow activation? I just want to be clear.


    As you pointed out that a retail copy of Windows 7 would activate, which is what the link that I gave probably is in reference too - i guess that makes sense.


    I guess If there is no way to get the serial on the side of the box to activate, then the only option would be to use something like Windows Loader (if I didnt make use of the recovery DVDs/recovery partition) and just used an ISO image to reinstall.
     
  5. FreeStyler

    FreeStyler MDL Guru

    Jun 23, 2007
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    Start with specifying what you have and what you like to do...eg: answer this question: I'm assuming your new one is a manufactured PC, not a custom built PC?
    Much easier to go from there
     
  6. uffbros

    uffbros MDL Senior Member

    Aug 9, 2010
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    I do it all the time and NEVER a problem..With Windows 7 there is no difference in OEM or Retail keys as far as clean installing goes. Install the version of 7 that you have a key for with any Win 7 DVD Retail or OEM and it works fine..I have done it hundreds of times and never any problems. Simple as that.
     
  7. FreeStyler

    FreeStyler MDL Guru

    Jun 23, 2007
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    #8 FreeStyler, Jul 30, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2011
    With the OEM:COA key attached to the sticker on the system housing? Installing using that key might work, the question was if it could be activated using that key (without calling to MS)
    Don't think so... maybe next time read the actual question to stay on topic.
     
  8. imjimmy

    imjimmy MDL Novice

    Jul 21, 2011
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    Check the thread on : Advanced Token Manager (here on MDL, I can't link to it, because I don't have permissions).

    Easiest way to back up your key and certificates.

    Then format, install the "same" edition of windows, and restore using the tool..