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Windows 7: Can I install my HP upgrade on a non-HP computer?

12 Nov 2009   #1

Windows Vista SP2
Can I install my HP upgrade on a non-HP computer?

I bought a HP desktop a few months ago. I thought it was outside the 'free upgrade' period,so I bought the Home Premium upgrade when it was offered for half price. I installed the purchased upgrade when it was released, but I've just found out I qualify for the free upgrade from HP.

So -- a friend is looking for Windows 7. Here are 2 scenarios I'm considering:

1) Can I install the HP upgrade on his computer? Or is there something that restricts the use of the HP upgrade only for use on HP systems?


2) Can I use the HP upgrade product key on my system and use the key from my purchased Windows 7 Upgrade on my friend's computer? If I change keys, does it automatically make the old key available again for installation on a new system?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Nov 2009   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 10, Home Clean Install

Unique question, but I think that I have the answer. Although, I am sure there are not many who experienced this problem, as far as I know there is no such thing as a HP upgrade disc. The upgrade discs are all the same. They don't know and don't care where they go as long as you follow the EULA (end users agrement).

Make an image of your buddies hard drive. You can use acronis (free) if you do not have an image making device. Then put the dvd into the puter. Selcect clean install, but do not give the key number when asked. When completed make sure that it works, install the programs, try if for a few days. Then give the key number.

If the key is rejected and is should not, because its a dumb dvd, doesn't know where it has been, your done enjoy.

If for any reason it does not work, just use the image, and put your friend puter back the way it was. You did not break even, you gained knowldege. Best of luck and most important enjoy.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Nov 2009   #3
Microsoft MVP


Does your HP Win7 upgrade disk have HP branding on it or is it a MS Win7 Upgrade disk? Put it in the DVD drive and explore to see what folders are in its root.

Is a key for the HP upgrade included? If not, it may be keyed to the Vista OEM already tattooed to your motherboard, or have the key somehow embedded if it is HP branded Upgrade.

If it is a standard MS Upgrade disk with a key, then you can attempt to change the key on your installed Upgrade to the one to which you were legally entitled from HP by running a repair install (Upgrade over itself from desktop) which will keep all of your programs, files and settings exactly in place but reinstall the OS. This requires you to reactivate afterwards at Computer>properties, so you can see if it takes the HP key in place of the one you purchased since it has no memory of the previous key. If not, you can try calling MS to activate your HP OEM WIN7 upgrade and their computer will parse the "batch key" given by manufacturer to get your exact key, by trading a series of numbers. If it activates, then you can give your friend your purchased copy and key.

Failing this, you can clean reinstall by booting from the HP upgrade media and activate that way, also allowing you to give the purchased upgrade to your friend. If you do use the HP upgrade, I would go to great pains to evade the bloated apps disk since the Win7 installer has all the drivers you need and HP product download page has anything else.

I seriously doubt that the HP OEM license for that upgrade will work on another machine, even if the installation completes. So your best attempt would be trying the above approaches to find the simplest path to gettin the HP Upgrade activated on your machine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 Can I install my HP upgrade on a non-HP computer?

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