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Windows 7: Need an XP activation expert!

09 Feb 2010   #1
Microsoft MVP

Need an XP activation expert!

My friend wants to reinstall XP Pro on his older Dell Latitude C640 laptop. The laptop has Win2000 COA stickered to the bottom. We read the existing XP Pro Product ID and Key using Magic Jellybean and it appears to be retail key (no OEM in ID string). However I don't know if it is full retail or upgrade version key.

I have an XP Pro retail installer. My question is: If we attempt to install, will accepting key upfront mean that we have the correct version (full retail)? If it rejects key, will it tell us that it is instead an Upgrade version key (as Win7 will do). If we obtain an XP Pro upgrade installer, will inputting the Product key from the COA sticker, and then the XP Upgrade Product key be all that is needed - or do we need an original Win2000 CD?

My memories of these XP upgrade procedures are really hazy so if anyone can recall it would be great to know what to expect. Any tips also greatly appreciated!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2010   #2

Windows 8.1 Pro RTM x64

An XP disk can be one of 2 types, Full or Upgrade. If you are using the upgrade version and you don't have a qualifying OS already installed, it will ask you to prove it by inserting a valid OS installation CD during the setup (directly after the license agreement). The actual key is entered towards the end of the setup routine. I am not sure whether or not there is a differentiation between Full and Upgrade keys with XP because of the different method of providing proof of a previous OS, i.e. already installed or a physical disk.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2010   #3
Microsoft MVP


Thanks, Dwarf: He doesn't have the Win2000 disk, but we have the Product ID from the COA sticker on laptop.

Would a generic OEM Win2000 install CD work if it proves to be a retail Upgrade copy of XP Pro?

Does anyone know if XP Pro installer will tell us that we have an Upgrade key when we insert it using a full retail version?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

09 Feb 2010   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient


This may help.

Picture 1 using upgrade key with full CD.

Picture 2 using upgrade CD.

Attached Thumbnails
Need an XP activation expert!-imag0002.jpg   Need an XP activation expert!-imag0004.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Feb 2010   #5

Win 7 Pro x64, VM Win XP, Win7 Pro Sandbox, Kubuntu 11

gregrocker, in most cases the key code on the laptop or pc is for the OEM copy of the pre-installed OS. Usually a pre-installed OEM doesn't need the key code during reinstall. If the OEM disk is available that what be the way to go, however, it sounds as though you want to install XP which didn't come with this laptop. If this is the case you will need a key code that is generic to that copy of XP. Good luck and hope this helps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Feb 2010   #6
Microsoft MVP


Thanks, all!

So if XP Pro full retail rejects Product key we retrieved using Magic Jellybean, then it must be an XP Pro Upgrade version?

But if we don't have a Win2000 CD to insert as per theog's screenshot, can anything else be done to install using the Pro upgrade version installer?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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