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Windows 7: Recover Home premium key after upgrading to pro

15 Feb 2012   #1

Windows 7 Pro x64
Recover Home premium key after upgrading to pro


I would like to know if it is possible to recover the Win 7 home premium key after the computer has been upgraded to Win 7 Pro.

When the company started we were using win 7 home premium for our computers, as we grew we needed to install a win 2008 server and upgrade all of our workstation to Win 7 pro.

The problem I have is that 3 of the computer we have don't have the Win 7 home Premium label on them and we have already upgraded them to win 7 Pro.

I have already try using key finder software however they only give me the win 7 pro key.

The annoying thing about upgrading from home to pro is that if you need to reinstall windows you cannot use the upgrade key you need to use the home premium key and afterward do the upgrade to pro.

Does anyone know how I could recover the missing keys ?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #2

XP / Win7 x64 Pro

This is a good question, and writing down the original key is something most probably don't realize they'll need to do when upgrading.

I'm not sure if you're actually able to recover keys for the previously upgraded OS. What have you tried to recover the keys?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #3
Microsoft MVP

Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center 64 bit

What happened to the COA stickers? If they are laptops did you look under the battery? I'd be surprised if you can recover the original Home Premium keys with software now. If they had factory installed OEM versions or Windows 7 you could likely order a set of recovery disks. If they are all the same make and model one set of disks will work on all of them.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #4
Saint Andrew

MS Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1

  • OEM disk product key will be on the sticker under the laptop.
  • OEM Disk product key might also be on the back of the disk packaging.
  • Retail disk will have a peace of paper with the product key.

You can always ring the Manufacturer and get a new disk.

Last Resort - Type ''slui.exe'' and use the automatic Phone System. Hold the line and explain what has happened. They should have records from when you upgraded Windows.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Feb 2012   #5
Microsoft MVP


The modern method for reinstalling Win7 is to reimage the HD or its replacement using the built-in backup imaging, from an image you capture just after install, or in your case additionally after Anytime Upgrade.
Backup Complete Computer - Create an Image Backup
System Image Recovery

I agree it's unlikely you can recover the Home Premium keys now and should focus on recovering them from their source as they are possibly recorded somewhere and traceable by confirmation emails, receipt, bank info, etc.

However since Anytime Upgrade only unlocks extra features while overwriting the Product ID and Key with the new ones, it is worth auditing the info with Belarc Advisor hardware/software audit
to see what it finds.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2012   #6
Fred Garvin


I would use Greg's method to pull the 7 pro key out, there are other programs which will do the same. I'm pretty sure the original 7 Home key can't be retrieved. If it was me, I'd image the drive first, then do a full install and try entering the 7 Pro key and see what happens. I haven't tried it first hand myself.

If the 7Pro key won't let you complete the install, don't enter any key at all and click I'll activate later. Once Windows is installed, activate with the 7 Pro key. When it fails, call the 800 # and do a phone activation. I'd be very surprised if MS doesn't complete the activation. Not trying to add insult to injury, but it's a good idea to put upgrade keys in a spread sheet with other serials & IT data and store a copy on the server.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Aug 2013   #7

Windows 7 Pro x64

Hi all sorry for the long delay,

firstly, these computer are not OEM made but came from a small computer store where the company used to be and the label tend to be removed or to simply fall.

secondly, keeping a record of all your serial is a must (first thing I did after taking over the IT department).

Finaly how to solve a missing key :
You cannot recover a win 7 home key after it is been upgraded, nor can you use it to simply activate a win 7 pro installation. You need to contact MS customer support and they will let you activate it.

Thanks for your help
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Recover Home premium key after upgrading to pro

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