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Windows 7: Windows 7 lost product key

04 Aug 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 
Windows 7 lost product key

Okay so I'm going to explain this in detail so i dont sound like a pirate looking for a free CD key (saw a post like this, and he was pointed out as one) So about 2 years ago, I bought a preloaded Dell Studio XPS from Dell. It came preloaded with Windows 7. Needless to say, I'm not gentle with moving it, mixed with the heavy use it received, made the sticker get 1/2 way ripped off, so i cant see the product key. I can see about 10 of the keys, but that's not good enough (obviously) Also, I found the computer on Dell.com under the "My Products and Services" area, I just don't know how to get in contact with them to get the key back.
The reason I need the key, about a month ago I downloaded Windows 8 Customer Preview, and I loved it. But, one day it crashed and I couldn't do anything about it (Was too stupid to put it on a disc/ didn't think i would need the system restores) So, I had to get a Windows 7 disc from a friend and reboot my computer from scratch. Now that its all up and working now, I want to get my old product key so I can activate it. Like i said, I have the computer in Dell.com and the case is still sitting next to me, so i have the proof that i have it, but I just need someone to point me to the area where i can talk to a Dell/ Microsoft employee who can get me my key back.
Thank you in advance (Another thank you for reading that huge block of text above me)


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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04 Aug 2012   #2

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

If you use a dell branded windows 7 disk, it will auto activate for you and you wont have to put in your key.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Aug 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

It's mostly a thing of, well, I'm hearing that if you have a valid windows 7, that you can upgrade to Windows 8 after it releases, for around 40$. I don't want to take my friends product key and do that, just to have him try to upgrade and not allow him because I used it. I would just rather have my original one, so that I don't mess with my friends. Unless, you can do that multiple times with the same product key, then I apologize for wasting your time :P
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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04 Aug 2012   #4

W7 X-64 W8.1 X-64 Opensuse 13.1 W2003 Server
 
 

Hi there
Try this piece of software (free)


Belarc Advisor - Free Personal PC Audit, for software, hardware and security configuration information on your computer. Software license management, IT asset management, cyber security audits, and more.

It will produce a decent list of everything on your machine. Takes a few mins to run though -- be patient

I enc a screenshot of part of the output -- as I'm using W8 release preview the key is public so I show it. The software found all the keys for other products too -- be patient as it takes about 5 mins to run.

(If you are paranoid about this list being transmitted to somewhere in cyberspace disconnect from the Internet when running).



Incidentally - at least with Windows 7 you could upgrade without a previous product being activated - so install the previous product - don't activate - and then run the upgrade. I'm fairly sure that Ms won't have removed this loophole yet.

Cheers
jimbo


Attached Thumbnails
Windows 7 lost product key-keys.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Aug 2012   #5
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Call Dell and have them send you an installation disc. That comes with an automatic key. Will probably cost you a small S&H fee.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Aug 2012   #6
Microsoft MVP

 

The key you audit from factory preinstalled Windows 7 is the SLP key used to mass activate at factory and will not work to Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 which requires the COA sticker key.

Without that your only option as pointed out already is to order a Recovery Disk from Dell. They ship a clean copy branded Reinstallation DVD so follow the steps in the tutorial above to get a perfect reinstall which will activate itself.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 Aug 2012   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

Here is the page from which you can submit your request for backup discs online. https://support.dell.com/support/top...=us&l=en&s=dhs

Give the reason that your HDD had failed and needs to be replaced ( and not that you played around with Windows 8. )

There is a good chance that DELL will send you the OEM Reinstall disk free of cost even if your system is out of warranty or they will call you and intimate if a fee is required. Usually DELL is very prompt and you will get it within a few days.

Other alternatives:

1. Get the recovery disks from a friend who has the same model and same Windows 7 edition preinstalled.

2. Borrow the DELL OEM Reinstall Media (same Windows edition) from any of your friends who may have it.

It may also be possible to write your own OEM reinstall media and use it to self-activate your valid OEM licence. Do a google search and explore this possibility as a last resort.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Aug 2012   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by darobman View Post
It's mostly a thing of, well, I'm hearing that if you have a valid windows 7, that you can upgrade to Windows 8 after it releases, for around 40$. I don't want to take my friends product key and do that, just to have him try to upgrade and not allow him because I used it. I would just rather have my original one, so that I don't mess with my friends. Unless, you can do that multiple times with the same product key, then I apologize for wasting your time :P
You are right that you can't use your friends product key. Each PC must have its own key. At this point the only option is to contact Dell. Use the link in the message above. Good luck.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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