Took comp. for diagnosis...back, I can't open my files!!!

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  1. Posts : 142
    windows 10
       #1

    Took comp. for diagnosis...back, I can't open my files!!!


    [Dell desktop; Chrome & Firefox browsers; Thunderbird & Gmail emails; Win10; now typing on a Lenovo laptop.]

    The man says all he did to diagnose it, was to remove my HD put in his and put back my own HD. But at home I couldn't open any of the icons on the start page, some icons were all white and none opened, not even the start button. He offered to try to get all my files at $25 per hour for which I had to buy a HD extension, etc. - not even giving guarantee of saving my files!

    However, on a corner of the screen it said my Windows is not activated, to go to settings to activate windows. There, they asked for the Windows 10 License Number. But I can't get into that page where it shows the number. I got Windows 7 with the purchase of my computer, and later Windows 10 installed itself but...is there any way I can get my License Number so I can retrieve all my files? Anyone please?

    Thanks ever so much for any ideas! Adela
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 1,871
    W10 pro x64 20H2 Build 19042.610
       #2

    I can't just think of anything easy for you to try but to get the ball rolling can we ask what the original issue was with the PC and why it needed repair ?

    W10 normally activates automatically, with a record of the licence key being held on Microsoft servers. Nothing for the user to do… normally.

    Dark thoughts... does it boot up looking like your PC did before you took it in. Just wondering if you have the same drive put back in.

    Its easy to remove an HDD and pop it into a USB caddy and connect that to a working PC. You should then be able to browse the contents of the drive.

    Lets see what other suggestions come in.

    Lets
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 142
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    Mooly said:
    I can't just think of anything easy for you to try but to get the ball rolling can we ask what the original issue was with the PC and why it needed repair ?
    W10 normally activates automatically, with a record of the licence key being held on Microsoft servers. Nothing for the user to do… normally.
    Lets see what other suggestions come in.
    Thank you so much Mooly for sorting out this mess for me so nicely! I thought the windows license was kept somewhere within the computer.

    The original issue was that from time to time (sometimes more often) the entire computer flickered terribly across all softwares (or apps?) for about 10 minutes or more, so if I had something to write I had to wait and then do it in a hurry before another "tsunami"! Also the vertical scroll bar suddenly rushes all the way down taking with it any text on the page or even while I type. Because it's an old computer I only wanted to know what this thing was and whether it could be fixed at a small cost.
    Dark thoughts... does it boot up looking like your PC did before you took it in. Just wondering if you have the same drive put back in.
    I tried re-starting it and also booting it up (shutting up and opening?) but it looked the same with the unopenable icons...except for the little notice about activating my W10. Oh it could be a key to the present problem if the man forgot to put the same drive back in. If I ask him I'm afraid he may not remember or deny it?
    Its easy to remove an HDD and pop it into a USB caddy and connect that to a working PC. You should then be able to browse the contents of the drive.
    The man suggested that I do that and he'd tell me which screws to open, etc. but I was afraid to mess up and lose my files as I had never opened a computer before. But, now that you are suggesting it, I'll call the man to help me do it with my prayers to not lose my files....

    I again thank you so much for your help!
    Last edited by Brink; 13 Oct 2018 at 13:53. Reason: fixed quote box
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 142
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #4

    Hi again Mooly, I just found the packing slip of my old computer where it lists as first item:

    "In this shipment: Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit English"
    and it goes on with the list. Do you think this could help me get the license number maybe? Or, is there a way to contact Windows customer service?
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 1,871
    W10 pro x64 20H2 Build 19042.610
       #5

    When you buy a computer it normally comes with a license called an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) that ties the activated operating system to that one computer. Put simply, that means your license key will only work on the original setup.

    There may well be a sticker on the PC somewhere (underneath ?) showing the original W7 license.


    If you have that then you could try entering the product key. If it doesn't activate then I think a message comes up with a free number to ring where you can try phone activation (entering the key that way) and if that doesn't work then you get through to a real person.

    A computer normally reports that it is inactivated when some major component is replaced and that is because Microsoft realise that it could mean that someone is trying to install W7 or W10 on a different PC.

    So the big question is why yours is now not activated. Something has been done to make it report that.

    I also thought that you actually could use a non activated PC but that it would only work for a short time (60 minutes for example) and revert to much reduced functionality for each time you use it.

    Something untoward seems to have gone on here, more than just removing and replacing back the HDD.
    Last edited by Brink; 18 Oct 2018 at 19:44. Reason: removed image with COA
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 853
    Windows 10 Pro 21H1 build 19043.1706
       #6

    I'd be inclined not to go anywhere near the person who created this mess! doesn't look like he knows what he is doing. Wondering if he just did a repair install of Win10 on your disk in his PC rather than yours, which may account for the license issue.
      My Computers


  7. Posts : 1,871
    W10 pro x64 20H2 Build 19042.610
       #7

    Something like that could be possible I suppose although I guess we'll never know for sure just what has happened here.

    I think getting your files recovered has to be the priority. Does your search box at the bottom left work ? Can you type 'This PC' into it (without the quotes) and get it to open ?
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 376
    Windows 10 Home 64-bit Edition
       #8

    On Win 10, click on Settings, System, scroll down and click About, you will fill info in Device Information.
    Win 10 you activate with a Microsoft Account instead of a product key.
      My Computers


  9. Posts : 376
    Windows 10 Home 64-bit Edition
       #9

    Oops, not fill, find.
      My Computers


  10. Posts : 142
    windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #10

    Mooly said:
    When you buy a computer it normally comes with a license called an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) that ties the activated operating system to that one computer. Put simply, that means your license key will only work on the original setup.

    There may well be a sticker on the PC somewhere (underneath ?) showing the original W7 license.



    If you have that then you could try entering the product key. If it doesn't activate then I think a message comes up with a free number to ring where you can try phone activation (entering the key that way) and if that doesn't work then you get through to a real person.

    A computer normally reports that it is inactivated when some major component is replaced and that is because Microsoft realise that it could mean that someone is trying to install W7 or W10 on a different PC.

    So the big question is why yours is now not activated. Something has been done to make it report that.

    I also thought that you actually could use a non activated PC but that it would only work for a short time (60 minutes for example) and revert to much reduced functionality for each time you use it.

    Something untoward seems to have gone on here, more than just removing and replacing back the HDD.
    Oh my great friend, with my deepest thanks I answered you extensively and when I clicked on "Post Quick Reply" it disappeared! I'm hoping someone in "Contact" could help me recuperate it before I start again my reply to your most helpful info. I only will say that after trying so many times for over 3 hours to go to the Win. store...the screen changed saying they found some errors and are trying to fix. then after "fixing" it said it couldn't. So I guess I'm back on square 1. But I'll answer more thoroughly as soon as I hear from tenforums as to whether they can recuperate my lost message. I also have terrible bad luck in the security squares or images which took me a whole hour to try to execute and still wasn't able so all in tears I asked "Contact" to please let me go in without this sadistic punishment.... lol!
    Last edited by Brink; 18 Oct 2018 at 19:43. Reason: removed image with COA
      My Computer


 

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