Convert existing Windows 7 OEM install to retail?

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by riahc3, Feb 23, 2015.

  1. riahc3

    riahc3 MDL Addicted

    Jul 29, 2009
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    I have a Windows 7 OEM install. I want to uninstall its OEM license and install a retail key.

    How can I do this? Reinstall is obviously not a option.
     
  2. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

    Jul 14, 2013
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  3. riahc3

    riahc3 MDL Addicted

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  4. riahc3

    riahc3 MDL Addicted

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    Another related question:

    If I can only buy a OEM key, is there a version of Windows I can install or not install that on? Can it be converted?

    I ask this because like I said I have on a PC Windows 7 installed.....Im not sure what version it is. I want to remove its current license (Im almost SURE it is OEM) and install a brand new OEM key bought....
     
  5. CaptainKirk1966

    CaptainKirk1966 Former MDL Guru

    Oct 31, 2009
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    Just change the key with slmgr /ipk your-retail-key if same edition.
     
  6. Mr.X

    Mr.X MDL Guru

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    Make sure what edition you already have, then I can help you.
     
  7. timster

    timster MDL Senior Member

    Aug 23, 2009
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    CaptainKirk posted the easiest method to change the product key.
     
  8. CaptainKirk1966

    CaptainKirk1966 Former MDL Guru

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    Yes, oem, retail, volume all determined by the key that is used.
     
  9. riahc3

    riahc3 MDL Addicted

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    Run Daz loader.
    Clicked uninstalled
    Installed my key via Windows and activated perfectly.
     
  10. Palladin

    Palladin MDL Senior Member

    Feb 1, 2014
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    I recently had a similar situation but much to my surprise Windows did everything for me.

    The new Dell computer that I just bought came with a stock OEM version of Windows 7 Home Premium. It didn't bother me that it was only Home Premium because it would do most everything I needed it to do, with the exception of the Group Policy Editor and a few other things I probably wouldn't need.

    When I first got it, I imaged the disk and then partitioned it the way I wanted it. Grabbed a copy of Windows 7 Pro from Heidoc and attempted to install it. It installed OK, but couldn't access the network, or the internet. I couldn't find the drivers that would work on the recovery partition or the Install DVD. So I just installed the base operating system from the Dell DVD and the went through the Upgrade nonsense, all 175+ of them from the stock image. Why Dell doesn't offer an updated system when they ship their computers is just a mystery to me.

    Anyway after a weekend getting all the updates installed, and making images along the way I got everything installed, all my old software, and the installation was running just fine. In the process of setting up everything I noticed something called "Windows Anytime Upgrade". I had never noticed that before, so I clicked on it. It asked me for a product key and I had a legit key from my previous Win-7 Pro 32-Bit system, and entered it.

    It went through the usual "windows will restart" crap but when it was all said and done, I had a Windows 7 Professional system, compliments of Windows Anytime Upgrade. It was easy, took only a few minutes, and checking the installation with My Computer it said I had 3 days to activate it, and I went ahead and decided to select "Activate Now" and it did. Now I'm activated and running Win-7 Pro on a Dell that came stock with an OEM version of Home Premium. How about that.

    But then disaster struck. When I went to configure Outlook the configuration got all screwed up, so I just restored a prior image, and after a major monkey drill got Outlook working. Then I realized that the image I restored was *before* I upgraded from Home Premium to Professional. o_O

    Well I was bummed, but there was nothing I could do at that point. I finished installing all the Office software, more Windows Updates and got a system that was configured like I wanted. But the brief upgrade to Win-7 Pro haunted me. I figured I had nothing to lose, so I imaged the Final-Final configuration in case it got all hosed up and went to "Windows Anytime Upgrade" again. I entered my key, it went through the same steps as it did before, and I was waiting for the message..."Invalid Key" or "Key used to much" or some such error message. But none showed up. It upgraded the installation to Pro, and activated no problem. :clap: I couldn't believe it.

    I guess this means that you can upgrade any version of Windows to any other version provided you have the correct key, in my case, a legit Professional key. This kinda reinforces the fact that not only are all of the versions present in a stock image, by removing the ei.cfg it looks like all the versions are installed and entering a legit version key changes the version from one to another.

    Looks like Microsoft learned a few things from IBM. Way back when it was called "The Golden Screwdriver" because IBM shipped all the AS/400's and Mainframes pretty much fully configured, but only activated either through software or hardware the configuration you paid for. If you wanted to upgrade the memory, a tech came out and did something, but people began to notice that the tech didn't install anything. After a while on of the techs spilled the beans on IBM and it became to be known as the Golden Screwdriver. The description fit too, if you don't come up with the gold, you're screwed.

    Anyway it was a learning experience for me. Give it a shot. If you have a legit key, and an OEM installation, Windows Anytime Upgrade makes it quick and easy. But be sure to image your system before you try it, in case something goes wrong.

    .