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Windows 7: Cloning laptop HDD breaks Win Update and Win Live Mesh

04 Aug 2012   #1

Win 7 64 bit
 
 
Cloning laptop HDD breaks Win Update and Win Live Mesh

I have a Dell Vostro 3500 laptop running Win 7 Pro SP1. Win 7 OEM. Had 500GB HDD which I needed to replace - for more space, among other things.
First, used Apricorn utility to clone the 500GB onto a 750GB. Everything (booting, apps, etc) worked fine except that Windows Update and Windows Live Mesh won't work anymore. I've run sfc and chkdsk and sent logs to MS (MS Answers). Nothing has helped (we're 2 weeks into this) and I don't seem to be the only one who has Live Mesh problems.
Yesterday, I fired up Acronis True Image and cloned the 500GB drive onto a different 750GB drive, hoping that different software and a fresh HD might be the joy. Same problem.
I've run all the same tests, and problem still exists.
Windows Update error message is usually that the service isn't running. Right now clicking on Check for Updates produces no reaction. The shield is red with an X on it.
Windows Live Mesh tried to open and then immediately says, Live Mesh Environment stopped working. I've tried repairing Windows Live Essentials, uninstalling, reinstalling, rebooting inbetween, etc.
I've been on the phone with Dell - have sent them my CBS.log file from the SFC scan, and they've not been able to come up with anything I haven't already tried.

I'm reminded of the old saw that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

Now, the Dell tech is saying I need to do a clean reinstall. Part of the problem, of course, is that this is an OEM product and all I have is the recovery/backup disks I made 2 yrs ago when I got the laptop. (I think there is a lesson there ).
Aside from the torture of reinstalling all my apps (and I have a ton), there is the need to find the Product Keys from the original Win 7 install and the MS Office 2007 Small Bus install (also OEM). I have all my other app info and all data is backed up in several places.
Is there a favorite Keyfinder that's free and reliable?
I see a Windows 7 sticker on the bottom of the laptop and I can still read that Key - is that what I'll need or is there one more that is necessary to activate?
I've read so many of the threads and tuts here - and on MS Answers that I'm somewhat confused.
The 219487 tut looks like the place to start.
Before I do that, does anyone have advice on the Win Update problem, the Win Live Mesh problem?
Anything else I should try?? I'm obviously trying to avoid the big hit........

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Cloning laptop HDD breaks Win Update and Win Live Mesh





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