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Windows 7: Hard drive change and reinstall, will Win7 reactivcate?

30 May 2016   #1

Windows 7
Hard drive change and reinstall, will Win7 reactivcate?

Hey, I am about to change out the hard drive in an old Voodoo Firebird that has Windows 7 Home Premium on it and I have no factory disk. I want to reinstall the OS completely to erase any data because I am giving it away to a friend so cloning the disk is out of the question.

If I reinstall the same OS will it automatically activate like Windows 10 (the OS was installed legacy with no UEFI option)?

What is the best way to go about installing the OS and will I need to purchase another key? Any insight into this would be greatly appreciated, thank you.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2016   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

Welcome to Seven Forums :)

No, Windows 7 won`t self activate.

You have to use the activation key on the COA, if it does not have a COA, then you`ll have to buy an OS or just give it to your friend and let him install Windows or Linux (free) himself.

If you are worried about your data, you could consider keeping the drive, hard drives and SSD`s are cheap :)

Attached Images
Hard drive change and reinstall, will Win7 reactivcate?-coa-certificate-authenticity.gif 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 May 2016   #3

Windows 7 Professional x64, Arch Linux

Before you wipe the drive, you may be able to retrieve the Product Key with Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder or something similar if there is no COA.

I've never had the pleasure, but it's my understanding that activation can be a bit of an ordeal with OEM keys. Just FYI.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

30 May 2016   #4

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

Well, they may or may not work. If that key he finds is the one the manufacturer used then it won`t work to activate windows again.

They are called Mass Activation keys, and that`s why computers with XP, Vista and 7 were sold with a COA attached to the PC or it was with the packaging, DVD etc. so the end user could reinstall windows if he/she wanted to.

If the OP has a COA with a readable activation key, we can post a MS link for him to download the proper iso file to create an install dvd.

But that idea may very well work, as I`ve never even heard of Voodoo, and they may have used individual activation keys and by law should have affixed a COA to the PC
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Hard drive change and reinstall, will Win7 reactivcate?

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