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Windows 7: Can You Install Retail Windows 7 and use OEM serial #

05 Oct 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 
Can You Install Retail Windows 7 and use OEM serial #

OK here is what I am wondering. My daughter has a Toshiba laptop that I bought for her with Windows 7 installed. It, like virtually all PC's with windows pre-installed came with tons of bloatware on it. I would like to reinstall windows minus all the bloatware

So I was wondering if I could use my retail up-grade disk to format and reinstall Windows on her laptop but use her OEM serial number when prompted. In case your wondering yes I do have recovery disks that I made when the computer was first bought. I could use them but then I would end up with all the bloatware coming back.

If it's not possible then I guess I will just have to uninstall all the unnecessary stuff again. Just really trying to save a little bit of work.

Thanks


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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05 Oct 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

You say "OEM serial number".

Do you mean her 25 character Product Key found on a sticker on her PC, with a format like this:

xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx

You can use that Product Key, but it shouldn't contain the characters "OEM" and is not a "serial number".

I think you could use your own disk IF AND ONLY IF it matches the Windows 7 edition mentioned on her product key.

You can definitely download a legit Windows 7 ISO from the following link, burn it to a disc, and use her Product Key. Make sure you download the version matching her Product Key:

Official Windows 7 SP1 ISO from Digital River My Digital Life

I'd make sure I had all Toshiba drivers for her PC downloaded separately. You never know which you might need. The drivers provided by the Windows 7 installation disc should work for most if not all functions.

I'd particularly want to have the necessary Ethernet/wireless driver on hand as it may be needed to establish an Internet connection after you clean install.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2012   #3

7 x64
 
 

There should be a Utility to make a Real Win 7 OEM DVD or ISO file from the System Backup and or Recovery partition included on the drive.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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05 Oct 2012   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

I used Magical Jelly Bean key finder to find both product id and the CD key.

@edwar- I don't see a recovery partition on this laptop so I don't know if it was never there or if it was somehow deleted. The HD is not partitioned so it's just a C drive and I don't see it.

@ignatzatsonic- I do see OEM listed as part of the product ID but I know that's not the line I would need to input. I now see the 25 number/letter combination for the CD key

I'm going to give it a shot now and reformat with my windows disk and try her key.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Shine View Post

I'm going to give it a shot now and reformat with my windows disk and try her key.
You will likely fail ultimately---if your disks are for a different version than her product key. If your disk and her product key are both, for instance, "Windows 7 Home Premium", then it might work.

If you fail, download the ISO for the version matching her product key.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2012   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Yes they are both windows 7 home premium. Never the less I have hit a bit of a snag. It seems the optical drive isn't working as windows can't see or play any disk that I put into it. So I guess I'll have to wait a day or so until I can find a new DVD ROM/burner. Device manager seems to show the drive to be alright.

ignatzatsonic thanks for your time. I will do as you suggested and download the ISO if reformatting it my way doesn't work out. Thanks again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2012   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Shine View Post
Yes they are both windows 7 home premium. Never the less I have hit a bit of a snag. It seems the optical drive isn't working as windows can't see or play any disk that I put into it. So I guess I'll have to wait a day or so until I can find a new DVD ROM/burner. Device manager seems to show the drive to be alright.

ignatzatsonic thanks for your time. I will do as you suggested and download the ISO if reformatting it my way doesn't work out. Thanks again.

If her Windows and yours are the same (ie Home Premium, etc), then using your disk on her PC is fine. You just need to find the sticker on her PC that has the 25 character key and input it after instalation. That will make things legit. Using your disk and her key is no problem as long as they are the same version of Windows. Thanks,
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2012   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista x64 / 7 X64
 
 

The key found on the HD won't do you any good if that is an oem preinstall.

You need the key off the sticker ( often under the battery )
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2012   #9
Microsoft MVP

 

Everything you need is here to get a perfect Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Oct 2012   #10

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Alright just a bit of a update on my reinstall progress. After a couple of blasts from a can of compressed air I got the DVD rom to start working again. It didn't really look too bad but I guess it was a bit dusty inside.

So I used my retail copy of home premium to format and install windows on the laptop and entered the serial number that came with windows home premium that was already installed on the laptop. Activation however was a no go, I tried a couple of times and got a error code 0xC004E003. So I thought this might be a case where activation by phone might be necessary so I called Microsoft.

I explained what I was doing and why I was doing it in the manner I was. The woman on the phone seemed to understand the reason why I was doing this as she is well aware of all the bloat ware installed on store bought systems. She asked me for the serial number, so I gave her the number and she repeated it back to me. She then informs me the error code indicates a problem with serial number and that the number I gave her is in fact a blocked/bogus number. She tells me that the serial number I gave her is all over the internet and that is why it is blocked. I'm told to take up the matter with Toshiba as they can't do anything from their end.

Thinking I don't have much to lose I reinstall again using the recovery disks I made on the first day I bought the laptop. It took a while but it did reinstall Windows along with all the unwanted bloat. I check the system out and find it's must automatically activate when installed this way. I used different software this time and recheck the serial number and confirm it's the same one I had given Microsoft. Not really sure how a blocked serial number is now working.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Can You Install Retail Windows 7 and use OEM serial #




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