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Windows 7: Uncertain About Best Way to Activate

11 May 2014   #11

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1

See my answers in your quote.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by baumgrenze View Post
Thanks to everyone who has responded to this post.

I still have a couple of questions:

1) Is there a link where I can see which versions of Windows 7 match which DigitalRiver ISO downloads? I'd like to 'see any differences' for myself.

See if this answers the questions on comparing versions. Compare Windows 7 Editions

2) If I encounter an activation problem (if the ISO I used is a mismatch for the 'upgrade version - Old Version' will this be tracked by some Microsoft database that will make activation more difficult next time I try? (I'm sorry, but Redmond's paranoia about my trustworthiness is infectious and, as an honest customer trying to arrive at an honest license to use their software, I don't want to do anything that might upset their self-protection scheme.

When you have installed Win 7 and played with it for a couple days and are happy with the install, you can activate (you have 30 days to do so). "Manually activate" by typing in your Product Key. If it is accepted, you are OK. If not a phone number will popup and you will call Microsoft. It is usually a recording that asks a few questions and if they are satisfied (almost always) they will give you a number to input.

3) How does the 'manual' activation process differ from the "automatic" activation process that can take place during the installation?

I am not sure what you mean "automatic activation". You are going to type in a number either way as I described above.

I have read Shawn's "Clean Install" tutorial and it clearly instructs me to "manually activate" my copy.

Clean Install with a Upgrade Windows 7 Version

And I've read his "How to Activate..." tutorial, too.

Activate Windows 7 Online

Perhaps I didn't read carefully enough, but how can these approaches result in different results? Perhaps it is enough to know that they can, and that only Redmond really understands the difference?

Sometimes the Product Key you type in is just not good for Microsoft. In that case you must call. Either way the end result is the same, you copy of Win 7 is activated for use.



My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 May 2014   #12

Win 7 Pro 64

My thanks to everyone who responded to this thread and reassured me that I'd get there eventually.

I successfully activated my installation and saved a screenshot to remind me.

I had a disconcerting experience this afternoon. I'd reverted to XP (unplug drive with Win7, plug in drive with XP, reset BIOS to 'disabled') and done some PhotoShop work I needed to get done. When I reversed the process and got back on the Win7 drive with the BIOS set to AHCI I encountered a hung boot process at the "Verifying DMI Pool Data ..." I unplugged everything (all other drives and all USB cables), reset the boot order in the BIOS so that only the hard disk option was available (all others disabled), reset the BIOS to AHCI and it booted.

I will download the XP Mode software and install it next so that I can avoid this miserable plugging and unplugging of drives.

Does it make a difference if I us Port 0 for the drive that has the OS installed? If so, I will put a high priority on physically mounting my OS/Programs SSD in the drive cage.

Are SSD's more or are they less susceptible to heat. Would it be better to mount the drives below or above the spinning drives I have. My system is in a Lian Li PC-B25B case (wonderful save for access to the front dust filter for cleaning) so the drives are stacked one above each other with 1/2" clearance and good air flow.

Thanks again to everyone,

My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 May 2014   #13

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64 +Linux_VMs +Chromium_VM

I don't know if SSDs are more or less susceptible to heat, but they should run cooler because they have no moving parts and use less power.
I would mount the SSDs below the HDs so the hotter HDs are not generating heat that affects the SSDs due to natural "hot air rises".
With your cooling, I don't know how much of a difference it will really make.
You could use a free program such as HWMonitor so you can monitor your temps, including HDs and SSDs.
HWMonitor CPUID - System & hardware benchmark, monitoring, reporting

Port 0 for the OS drive is "preferred/recommended" but using a different port works.
If your cabling and mounting locations (cage, etc) make using another port more convenient for you and everything works, it should not cause problems.

It sounds like you have to unplug drives depending on the OS you want to boot because Win 7 uses AHCI and XP uses IDE ?
Am I correct, and that is the reason - you have to set the mode in BIOS before booting "XP vs. Win 7" ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

12 May 2014   #14

Win 7 Pro 64

Thank you for the information about drive heat, monitoring, and 'preferred ports.'

I didn't do anything as complex as what you describe in the remaining quote below.

At present the case is open, the SSD is securely mounted on an adjacent wooden frame which allows access to power and a port (#5 of 0-5).

I was careful to disconnect my original OS/Programs drive before installing. This means I could reconnect it and boot from it (if I had the proper BIOS setting) and use XP. 'Logic' suggested that it would be safest if I disconnected the SSD so that I did not 'confuse' the system regarding which drive to use to load an OS. It is primitive, but it works. I am working on getting XP Mode installed so I can 'graduate' from this approach and get on with properly rearranging the drives in the system and closing up the case.

The BIOS in my system offers as modes "disabled or PATA," AHCI, and RAID. Originally it ran under RAID1 using Intel RST as the basis for the RAID. For a while I could load XP in the AHCI mode, but I must have lost a driver, so it will only load in PATA mode now. Win7 is happy with AHCI. I didn't want to empirically explore the combinations and permutations of to operating systems that required different BIOS modes. I've seen two or three different ways for the boot process to fail. Exploration wasn't worth my time.

Last evening I opened a thread under 'Virtualization.' I see it has had 117 views and no replies. Perhaps I asked a dumb question with an obvious answer. If so, it is unclear to me how to search and find if there is a difference between hardware-assisted virtualization and "Intel Virtualization Technology" which my MOBO manual says controls virtualiation on my system. Perhaps I should ask on the Intel Community boards?

Hardware-assisted Virtualization is Not Enabled

I don't want to screw up an otherwise successful installation by trying to run XP Mode without the proper BIOS setting.

Thanks for your help and interest,


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
It sounds like you have to unplug drives depending on the OS you want to boot because Win 7 uses AHCI and XP uses IDE ?

Am I correct, and that is the reason - you have to set the mode in BIOS before booting "XP vs. Win 7" ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Uncertain About Best Way to Activate

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