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Windows 7: Strange

26 May 2010   #21
gregrocker

 

Fascinating, thanks for filling us in.

Sometimes keyfinder software like Magic Jellybean comes up with a completely different Product Key than the COA sticker. Why the difference and which one to use?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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26 May 2010   #22
Bill2

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86
 
 

The keyfinder shows the actual installed key. This would be different from the COA key for OEM preactivated computers.

The reason is convenience of the Royalty OEMs. These guys sell thousands of computers. Imagine what a headache it would be to activate windows on every single machine with a unique key! To make their job easier, MS allows them to deploy a single key (the SLP key) (using the same image) across multiple computers. So how does activation work? This key (thats the one your keyfinder shows) clicks with the bios marker I was talking about earlier and another component (the OEM certificate) in a lock-and-key fashion and activates the system automatically and offline.

Which one should you use? If your OEM install needs to be reinstalled using a retail disk, then use the COA sticker key. Then do the phone activation thing. If you reinstall using the OEM restore disk, it will automatically enter the SLP key, theres nothing for the user to do.

You can use the SLP key also but the method is different and I wont go into out of fear of the Admins.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 May 2010   #23
gregrocker

 

Thank you, Bill.

You've given a more concise, thorough and revealing explication of OEM activation process than I've found it 10 years of searching.

As a clean reinstall specialist, I've been trying to understand exactly what is happening technically with these activations, for installs I otherwise understand quite clearly.

It's great to have your knowledge in the Install forum so please hang out here more often.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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26 May 2010   #24
Bill2

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Thank you, Bill.

You've given a more concise, thorough and revealing explication of OEM activation process than I've found it 10 years of searching.

As a clean reinstall specialist, I've been trying to understand exactly what is happening technically with these activations, for installs I otherwise understand quite clearly.

It's great to have your knowledge in the Install forum so please hang out here more often.
You overestimate me, Greg. But thank you for the kind words.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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