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Windows 7: Windows.old - can't find product key

19 Nov 2013   #11
NoelDP

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)/Win10
 
 

Must admit I've never tried it in a Windows.old folder personally - but unless Windows munges it itself when it creates the .old filder (and I don't believe it does) then it should be easily visible.

[edit ]- I suspect that the Key found was not the Default Key, but the OEM_SLP Key[/edit]
[edit2] - or the hashed version (BBBBB) used for MAK installs, often [/edit2]


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19 Nov 2013   #12
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

As far as I know, the key is encrypted.
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19 Nov 2013   #13
NoelDP

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)/Win10
 
 

Yes - but the algorithm is known,
With the MAK security hash, the Key is actually substituted out after activation so it doesn't exist in unhashed form - and the stored one is securely hashed
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19 Nov 2013   #14
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote:
Yes - but the algorithm is known
Do we know that algorithm? The keyfinder programs apparently do. But with those you cannot work on Windows.old. So it's catch 22.
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19 Nov 2013   #15
NoelDP

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)/Win10
 
 

ProduKey you can point at the Windows folder you need the Key out of using the /regfile switch

The algorithm for the Key's registry entry has been public knowledge for years - Google it - so far as I know, it hasn't changed since the release of XP....
http://www.licenturion.com/xp/fully-licensed-wpa.txt is useful.
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19 Nov 2013   #16
derekimo

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 
 

Tom has had success with Produkey,

ProduKey - Recover lost product key (CD-Key) of Windows/MS-Office/SQL Server


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tom982 View Post
Hi thx1139,

I don't know how to do it in Jelly Bean, but I do with ProduKey:

Your Windows 7 product key is stored in the software registry hive, located here:

C:\Windows\system32\config\software

Please note, software is the file name, not a directory. It has no file extension. Your drive may have a different letter.

This is a little program that will tell you the product keys of the various software installed on your computer. What makes this different, is the ability to load keys from an external registry hive. Exactly what we want

So if you download and run ProduKey (by NirSoft):

http://www.nirsoft.n...key_viewer.html

Then press File > Select Source, you will be presented with a new menu. On this, select Load the product keys from an external Software Registry hive and you will be prompted to open a file. Navigate to the software hive on the external drive and open the hive. E.g. D:\Windows\system32\config\software. You should now have your product keys

Hope this helped.

Tom
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19 Nov 2013   #17
MrGordita

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by derekimo View Post

This is what I have tried. Pointing Produkey to that specific file however like I said before it gives me the default key. Which from what I read is not what it should be doing.

Something a little odd with it as well was I could not actually get anything out of windows.old until I ran Produkey as administrator. I saw no mention of that in those posts.
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19 Nov 2013   #18
MrGordita

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by NoelDP View Post
What were the last 5 characters of the Key you found?
It would be very unusual to find a default key there in a 'working' installation.
PW487

I have used the install since 7/6/2011 without reinstalling. I find it hard to believe that it wasn't a legit working install during this time.
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20 Nov 2013   #19
NoelDP

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 x64 Home Premium (and x86 VirtualBox VM)/Win10
 
 

That Key is indeed the Default Key for Pro.
Check the date on the 'software' file - isis the correct one? (some people have more than old windows.old folder!)
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20 Nov 2013   #20
MrGordita

Windows 7 Pro 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by NoelDP View Post
That Key is indeed the Default Key for Pro.
Check the date on the 'software' file - isis the correct one? (some people have more than old windows.old folder!)
Did you mean more than ONE windows.old?

I am at work for the next 8 hours but I will check first thing in the morning. When you say check the date do you mean when it was last modified or are you referring to something else? If there is more then one windows.old where would the other be? I have hidden files and folders shown I think and I did not see it.
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 Windows.old - can't find product key




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