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Windows 7: help -- getting office running again

11 Oct 2009   #1

Windows 7 Professional
help -- getting office running again

I was lucky enough to be able to update to Win 7 Pro for free through a MS program for physics and engineering students. I previously had MS Office installed on my computer under Vista, but when I upgraded, it wiped all my programs away and I'm starting over installing everything. Anyway, I don't have written down anywhere what my product key was when I installed Office the first time (in vista). However, when 7 did the installation, it took all my program files and put them in a "windows.old" folder under Computer. Is there any way that I can transfer the installation (or at least the product key) from somewhere in the windows.old file to the new 7 OS?

Thanks so much for any help you can give me! And the sooner the better, because I really need to use Office ASAP. Thanks again!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Oct 2009   #2

Win 8 Release candidate 8400


there is a app out there that "finds" keys. I dont think it can find them in windows.old because it finds them in registry, but you might want to google for it. Its made by jelly bean and called key finder

good luck
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Oct 2009   #3

64-bit Windows 8.1 Pro

Were you able to retrieve your key?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

11 Oct 2009   #4

Win 7 Ultimate x64 & x86

DB, Zig is right about the app... it's called WinGuggle and can be downloaded from, or just follow the link I have. I have used it before with people that I have helped out with and it works great. Also, there is a great tutorial on our sister site ( that shows you how to restore the old Vista install with the Windows.old. Maybe your best bet would be to restore your old install, get all your keys, and then do your new install.

Best of luck and let me know how you make out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Oct 2009   #5

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers

Hi there
As a student you probably can get a new version in any case (Office 2007 Enterprise) for just the cost of the media - 10 USD or so. Should be available in the same program you got W7 from or try the Use at Home program. Most colleges will have something like this set up --MS is very keen on maintaining links with colleges etc.

While waiting for this you might be able to download a 30 - 60 day trial so you can do your work whilst sorting out the problems.

If all else fails for a while you could try installing Open Office -- it's not too bad if you aren't a real power user of EXCEL. Not a long term replacement for Office but at least it offers enough compatability to READ office documents and create 95% compatable ones. Its also FREE BTW. Should help you until you've sorted out the problem.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Oct 2009   #6

Win 7 Ultimate x64 & x86

DB, did you give the windows.old recovery a try? Let us know how you are making out.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Oct 2009   #7

Windows 7 Professional

hey everyone, sorry it took me a bit to reply there. The app was unable to find the key for me, but I can indeed get a key for a much discounted rate through my school here, so rather than restore vista, I'm just going to purchase it again (I installed the trial version in the mean time). Thanks for the advice everyone! You all are great.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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