Hi! I was going to write a long essay explaining my problems and confusion, but then I thought I might as well just get straight to the point... So my questions are: 1) OEM activation works by an effectively dummy SLP key redirecting the O/S to the activation data stored in the BIOS. Is this correct?? 2) If I wanted to reinstall, for example, a Dell Win7 HomePrem Laptop, which had shipped with Win7 pre-installed (so OEM-Activated), could I just use a retail disc, and provide a Dell or any other Home Premium SLP key? Is there anything wrong with this method? Do I need to change the ei.cfg channel thingymajig? 3) Can I use an OEM disc with a retail key? Does the disc type matter at all? 4) Is the license key on my machine (which shipped with Win7 HomePrem) a valid license key? I know it's locked to this desktop, but is it physically locked to this desktop, i.e. tied into my SLIC Bios stuff? Is there any reason why it wouldn't work as a standard retail key? What makes it different from an SLP key? Can I even use it to activate Windows? 5) Have I got really confused, and have no idea of what's going on? I am only asking, because I have a Saturday job at my local computer shop, and they seem to spend £100s ordering recovery discs for customers, (and too lazy to rip them in). I am pretty sure they don't need to bother, but am not 100% sure. (By recovery discs, I mean Branded Windows 7 Installation DVDs, that presumably have some license material built in?) 6) If they do not need to purchase recovery media, then should they be using the key on the sticker, or a relevant SLP key? Do they need to use OEM discs? 7)Finally, do the branded discs simply have SLP keys built in? Sorry for this long-winded article. Thank you for your time, whoever ends up answering it Edd.