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Windows 7: Dell OEM dvd activation?

27 Jun 2012   #1

Windows 7 Professional
Dell OEM dvd activation?

I just reinstalled Dell OEM Windows 7 Home Premium on an old laptop. Went fine until I found out the product key I had came up as invalid. My question is this. Under properties in My computer, it tells me that I only have three days to acivate with a good product key, and if I don't, Windows 7 will become limited.

How limited? What will I still be able to do? Anyone have any idea?
Thanks for your time.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64 Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Tri-Boot


Which key are you using to activate this installation - the one stuck on beneath the laptop, or inside the battery compartment?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2012   #3

Windows 7 Professional

Actually, the sticker on the old computer is unreadable. I had written a product key on the envelope the DVD was in, and I guess I mistakenly assumed it was for that old laptop. It must have been for something else. I have had several Dell laptops. Looks like I can't activate it, so I was just wondering about how limited the functionality will be after the three days when I don't activate. Any idea?

My System SpecsSystem Spec

27 Jun 2012   #4
Microsoft MVP


Most of the time the problem is that wrong Product Key characters are being inputted. Try again and stress accuracy.

After three days it will enter Reduced Functionality Mode which is the same for Windows 7 as Vista. The link explains how to extend activation until you can resolve the issue.

If your Recovery Partition will not run from boot then to continue taking advantage of the OEM Windows 7 license which you own for the life of the machine contact your OEM and order Recovery Disks which auto-activate during install.

Then you can come close to a clean install by following these steps to Clean Up Factory Bloatware.

There is also a way to back up the OEM-SLP factory activation in the factory install to use for Clean Reinstall, but it is not supported by these forums.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2012   #5

Windows 7 Professional

I understand. My question is, what will work in reduced funtionality mode and what will not.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jun 2012   #7

Windows 7 Professional

Thanks. Just what I needed to know.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jun 2012   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)

RFM in Win 7 is a very different proposition to RFM in Vista RTM or SP1 - but fairly similar to that in SP2.
Neither article properly addresses these differences - and I know of none that does.

The Superuser article is pretty close to my experience - at least if you simply allow WIndows to go out of grace period. I haven't tested much with known non-genuine systems, but the restrictions in that article would be the minimum.
Expect Aero and ReadyBoost to fail, and Media Center to stop working (although Media Player will continue to work, I believe)
MSE begins a 30-day countdown - and will STOP WORKING COMPLETELY at the end.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Dell OEM dvd activation?

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