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Windows 7: Activating using OEM key

14 Feb 2012   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Activating using OEM key

I bought a new Asus laptop today with Windows 7 Home Premium preinstalled, and my cousin (who supposedly happens to be a computer expert) formatted everything and set up Windows 7 Ultimate along with Ubunbtu.

I have downloaded the drivers and everything works fine, but Windows won't activate using the key at the back of the laptop. My cousin has also dumped an ISO image of the disk he used to install (Windows 7 Ultimate SP1, he told me) on my hard disk. Other than that, I have no Windows installation disks or anything.

How can I use my key to activate Windows? I don't need the Ultimate edition, Home Premium will be just fine.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #2


You can't use a key from a different version on Ultimate, OEM or otherwise.

Was the installation legitimate or was it something that's been pirated?

All you can do is either purchase Ultimate, or restore with the Asus master DVD...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I just called my cousin again and seems like he had created the SP1 disk using slipstreaming from an original Windows 7 disk. I had asked him not to install pirated stuff and that's why he had left the activation for me to do with my key.

I have been doing some reading. Will editing the ei.cfg to change it to "HomePremium" and "OEM" instead of "Ultimate" and "Retail" and re-installing after burning the ISO I have will do me any good?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

14 Feb 2012   #4


Nobody here is allowed to help you with pirated software, and a copy of a W7 DVD is pirated if it's been distributed to you in the manner described.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

You may be able to restore back to Home Premium if you still have a recovery partition or recovery disks.

If not, you can download a legit Home Premium ISO from My Digital Life, burn it to a disc, install from that disc, and then thank your cousin for causing you to go to the trouble.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 10 Pro x64

Actually your best bet right now is to use a Home Premium ISO from Digital River, do a clean install and wait till it is installed to enter the product key, at worst you may have to,

Activate Windows 7 by Phone

You actually end up with a cleaner installation without all the bloatware.

I just did that on a neighbors Dell that was trashed by a Trojan.

Here's some helpful info,

Clean Install Windows 7

Reinstalling Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit

Download the official version of Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 from the following link. (If your laptop came with 32bit version download the x86; If it came with the 64bit version download the x64)

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1-U ISO
Official Windows 7 SP1 ISO from Digital River My Digital Life

Clean install and then activate using the CoA key on your laptop..

You may have to activate by phone.

This is the only legal way to regain your OEM activation.

EDIT: As usual I am late. derekimo overtook me.:)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thanks guys. It's the 64 bit I want.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2012   #9

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-Bit

I recently installed Windows 7 on my neighbour's computer using a universal USB drive and the OEM product key.

Had to activate by telephone, but it went through without a hitch.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Feb 2012   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thanks guys, it worked. I was only given the option to activate by phone and the phone activation worked. :)

Now off to chrooting Ubuntu and reinstalling GRUB on sda.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Activating using OEM key

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