Why did I need to activate?

Discussion in 'Windows 7' started by ClaretandBlue, Nov 12, 2009.

  1. ClaretandBlue

    ClaretandBlue MDL Novice

    Oct 13, 2009
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    Ordered a laptop from a botique reseller (Clevo/Sager) and it came with Windows 7 pre-installed. It is an OEM install (when I went to activate, OEM was in the product key) so I thought those were pre-activated? I had to flip over the laptop and get the key from the sticker to enter during the initial windows boot up.

    My question.. Isn't Win7 supposed to be pre-activated for OEM installs? Secondly, can I use that key on another (same brand) computer (assuming of course I format this laptop.. wouldn't want to violate EULA.. ;) ) or is activation going to yell at me saying the key is in use?
     
  2. urie

    urie Moderator
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    May 21, 2007
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    If you had to activate the it is OEM not OEM SLP which means you can't use it on another machine because it is already registered to you.
     
  3. HSChronic

    HSChronic MDL Expert

    Aug 25, 2007
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    It was installed using an OPK so it is still OEM not Royalty OEM though.

    Royalty OEM is only for large scale OEMs that pay MS a certain amount each year for licenses and have special privileges. Small OEMs can use OPKs to install Windows, and then put an OEM sticker on the bottom so they don't have to buy retail copies of Windows. This saves them and you money.

    So to royalty activate you will need to mod your BIOS or use a loader/activator/whatever you want to call it.
     
  4. ClaretandBlue

    ClaretandBlue MDL Novice

    Oct 13, 2009
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    #4 ClaretandBlue, Nov 12, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2009
    (OP)
    Hrm, guess it's back to the drawing board then. That's a bit disappointing, but I appreciate the info!

    What about just cloning the (already activated) drive to the other PC? I assume MS has thought of that, but thought I'd ask.
     
  5. HotCarl

    HotCarl MDL Addicted

    Jul 21, 2009
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    #5 HotCarl, Nov 12, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2009

    Due to the nature of Windows activation, that would *only* be possible if the machine that you were cloning the drive to has the *exact* same hardware configuration as the PC you took the clone image of...and this is impossible since even if all the hardware the two PCs had were the same, the MAC addresses of the hardware in these 2 PCs would still different and will cause a different hardware hash every time (this is why activation backup only works on the same PC as the backup was made, as the hardware hashes would match then)...

    So then short answer is no, you *could* do that, but it would be a waste of time to do so since the PC you put the cloned image on would become deactivated as soon as it booted up for the first time and saw the different hardware config/hash...
     
  6. Dolorous Edd

    Dolorous Edd MDL Expert

    Aug 31, 2009
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    #6 Dolorous Edd, Nov 12, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2009
    Disable on board network and use USB, use identical hardware. Activate one machine, backup the activation with paymyrents utility then try to activate the other. once activated you should be able to enable the on-board nics on both computers. Sounds like allot of work and may not even succeed but if you were building two boxes with identical hardware or two VERY similar laptops it would be worth a try.

    Maybe one day I will try this, order up two of everything and give it a go.

    EDIT: I have changed CD drives, video cards, ram, processors, nics, hard drives, even reimaged the primary partition to a new drive, I have on only two occasions had to call MS and I just told them I changed a video card.
     
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  7. HotCarl

    HotCarl MDL Addicted

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    #7 HotCarl, Nov 12, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2009

    Many things you can put into your PC have a MAC address/unique hardware ID number, disabling 2 things will not matter ;)
    There is still the HardDrive ID/serial numbers that will not match, not to mention any expansion cards you have and/or integrated graphics/network adaptors. There are soo many things in your PC that can be used to uniquely ID it with a hardware hash...
    ...but there is nothing stopping you from trying. :)


    EDIT: You can think of it like a software hash (like a CRC or MD5 hash)...if even 1 little byte of information is defferent then the hash is completely different...and in the case of Windows, activation fails...
     
  8. ClaretandBlue

    ClaretandBlue MDL Novice

    Oct 13, 2009
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    Thanks guys, very identical hardware down to the model of ram chips, but I can see how mac address, etc would generate a different hash. I might try backing up the activation, etc, seeing how it goes. Unfortunately the bios on these things are notorious for bricking the laptops, even using the bios files from the manufacturer due to their convoluted update process so I'm hesitant to try flashing the bios. If this was a regular Dell laptop or something, I'd be all over it. Off to do some more research.. thanks again.
     
  9. Dolorous Edd

    Dolorous Edd MDL Expert

    Aug 31, 2009
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    #9 Dolorous Edd, Nov 12, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2009
    But have you actually tried it? I think it would work, just my opinion. the less hardware you have the better and I have never seen windows need activation after adding hardware, only changing it and typically you have to change allot of hardware.

    As for comparing it to a hash there is allot more tolorence for differing hardware, it isn't like a one bit difference would disable the activation.
     
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