Hey folks, I have a few questions that I wanted to ask (and I'm not sure if this violates the board's rules). A while back, I was doing some IT work down at a small office and the majority of machines were running Windows XP (although the "expiry date" for extended support will end in the matter of months - April 2014), although some were running Windows 7. Whenever they need me for some IT-related matters, they give me a call or e-mail me. The small firm that I did my IT work at - didn't do any "bulk orders" of new computers. They often call in to order a computer online or by phone and have it shipped to their business. I set up the computer using the steps as defined on the "pre-loaded" software on the new system. From there (and depending on the client's requirements), I was responsible on setting up machines that were "pre-loaded" with Windows 7, however (and if I had remembered correctly), there were some times that they told me to install Windows XP on those computers because they were some applications that were designed to run on Windows XP (notably that they use a supply chain management software at the workplace). I did this in the following way: 1) Place the Windows XP installation disc on the computer 2) Remove the partitions off the drive (leaving the recovery partition intact) 3) Installed Windows XP as I would normally 4) Search for drivers that run on Windows XP (by identifying the hardware IDs located in the System properties - I know that it's often hard but sometimes - I search for drivers that run on the XP OS and so on). 5) Installed necessary software. As Windows XP is heading towards "extinction" soon, I'm planning to put back Windows 7 on the computer that was pre-loaded with Windows 7 on it. However, the COA (Certificate of Authenticity) for Windows 7 remained intact. I'm considering installing Windows 7 that has a COA on that computer built directly by the manufaturer (or something like that). If I were to install Windows 7 using an "untouched" disc (I definitely apologize for telling you this, but), do I: 1) Enter the product key that was affixed to the back of the computer? 2) Need to activate it? 3) If there's a need to activate, do I need to telephone or activate online? 4) What are some of the other steps that are not covered in this scenario? If I remembered correctly, the computers that they have were Acer, HP, Compaq, Lenovos and some Dells (some of them were pre-loaded with Windows XP - both for the Lenovo and Dell). What's your suggestion in this particular situation? I know that my questions is a bit complex, but I needed some second opinions.