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  1.    23 Feb 2016 #1
    Join Date : Feb 2016
    Posts : 7
    Windows 10

    Windows 10 missing a code key...............


    Hi,



    I recently downloaded Windows 10 (again). A few months ago, my hard-drive was damaged and I had to replace it and reinstall all of my software. I was able to redownload my excel and word on-line because there was a code key sticker on the bottom of the laptop for Excel & Word. When I downloaded Windows 10, it keeps asking me for the code key.

    When I purchased my Dell laptop 2 years ago, the software was already loaded at the factory. I had no backup discs. The laptop came with Windows 8.1, so when Windows 10 came out, I simply upgraded on-line. At the time, it must have recognized my Windows 8.1 key, which is no where to be found now. I had no luck at all contacting Dell to give me the key. I have a copy of the receipt too. They wouldn't talk to me unless I had a maintenance agreement. (lessons learned). I'm wondering now if Windows has some sort of downloading record from me???



    Any help you can offer?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    23 Feb 2016 #2
    Join Date : Nov 2015
    Posts : 2,962
    64bit Win 10 Pro ver 1709 Build 16299.125

    Hello and welcome

    Normally W10 should automatically activate if it has already been activated before on your laptop. One of the reasons this might not happen is if you downloaded a different version or language of W10 compared to when it was first installed. Might this be the case?
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  3.    23 Feb 2016 #3
    Join Date : Feb 2016
    Posts : 7
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by philc43 View Post
    Hello and welcome

    Normally W10 should automatically activate if it has already been activated before on your laptop. One of the reasons this might not happen is if you downloaded a different version or language of W10 compared to when it was first installed. Might this be the case?
    I'm not sure how the download would recognize my laptop since it has a new hard-drive. I think I know why it happened. To get the system running, I borrowed a disc from a friend. He couldn't remember the key, so I used a generic one to get the system running. Then I downloaded Word & Excel and some other software programs. I went to the Windows 10 download site and redownloaded over the top of my borrowed windows 10 software. So even though I did this legally before my hard-drive crash, I can't seem to get a key too make this work again.
    I'm not sure that I even want to pursue this anymore, it seems like all I'm losing without the activation key is the ability to personalize the desktop.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    23 Feb 2016 #4
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    To expand upon what philc43 stated - the latest version of Windows 10 (ver. 1511, build 10586) will read a Windows 8/8.1 product key stored in the computer bios (if the manufacturer put one there) and install and activate without asking the user to provide a product key. If you are being asked for a product key then there are two reasons:

    1. More than likely you have downloaded and attempting to install the wrong version of Windows 10. If the product key in bios is for regular Windows 8 - you can't install "N" or Single Language Windows 10. Also the first version of Windows 10 - build 10240 - does not have the capability to read the Windows 8 product key in bios. There is some debate as to whether the Windows 10 must also be the same language the product key in bios is for.

    The current Windows 10 download will contain both the Home and Pro editions and the installer will pick which one to install based upon the product key it finds in bios.

    2. The second reason you will be asked for a product key is if there isn't one stored in bios. In this case you simply click "I don't have a product key", "skip", or "do this later". As long as you install the same version of Windows 10 that was on the computer before, after it installs it will retrieve the digital activation from Microsoft Activation servers and activate itself.

    I would recommend you run showkey plus from this forum, it will show you product keys stored in bios and what version of Windows it is for:
    Showkey - Windows 10 Forums
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    23 Feb 2016 #5
    Join Date : Feb 2016
    Posts : 7
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLCDR View Post
    To expand upon what philc43 stated - the latest version of Windows 10 (ver. 1511, build 10586) will read a Windows 8/8.1 product key stored in the computer bios (if the manufacturer put one there) and install and activate without asking the user to provide a product key. If you are being asked for a product key then there are two reasons:

    1. More than likely you have downloaded and attempting to install the wrong version of Windows 10. If the product key in bios is for regular Windows 8 - you can't install "N" or Single Language Windows 10. Also the first version of Windows 10 - build 10240 - does not have the capability to read the Windows 8 product key in bios. There is some debate as to whether the Windows 10 must also be the same language the product key in bios is for.

    The current Windows 10 download will contain both the Home and Pro editions and the installer will pick which one to install based upon the product key it finds in bios.

    2. The second reason you will be asked for a product key is if there isn't one stored in bios. In this case you simply click "I don't have a product key", "skip", or "do this later". As long as you install the same version of Windows 10 that was on the computer before, after it installs it will retrieve the digital activation from Microsoft Activation servers and activate itself.

    I would recommend you run showkey plus from this forum, it will show you product keys stored in bios and what version of Windows it is for:
    Showkey - Windows 10 Forums
    I ran Showkey plus as you suggested and it gave me an "installed key" from his disk (the wrong one from my friend). It also showed an original Windows 7 Home premium Key and a Windows 8.1 RTM Core OEMM key. I'm not sure what to do now.?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  6.    23 Feb 2016 #6
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by onthebay View Post
    I ran Showkey plus as you suggested and it gave me an "installed key" from his disk (the wrong one from my friend). It also showed an original Windows 7 Home premium Key and a Windows 8.1 RTM Core OEMM key. I'm not sure what to do now.?
    Click on each product key shown on the return from showkey plus and it will blank them out, then post the result on here as a screen shot. Then from search type winver and run the winver app and post that result here. Finally, from an elevated ("run as administrator") command prompt type:

    slmgr /dlv

    Post that result here as well. It will not contain any unique identification information so you don't have to blank anything out before posting.

    Using those three results we can tell you what the issue is.

    Here's how to post screenshots:
    Screenshots and Files - Upload and Post in Ten Forums - Windows 10 Forums

    in search type snip and run the snipping tool app to capture screenshots.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    23 Feb 2016 #7
    Join Date : Feb 2016
    Posts : 7
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Product key, winver and sigr / dlv info


    Windows Product Key Information

    Product Name: Windows 10 Pro

    Product ID: 00330-80000-00000-AA199

    Installed Key: *****-*****-*****-*****-3V66T

    Original Key: *****-*****-*****-*****-8447M

    Original Edition: Windows 7 HomePremium OEM:SLP

    OEM Key: *****-*****-*****-*****-HMGR3

    OEM Edition: Win 8.1 RTM Core OEMM

    Winver is attached

    slmgr / dlv is attached







    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLCDR View Post
    Click on each product key shown on the return from showkey plus and it will blank them out, then post the result on here as a screen shot. Then from search type winver and run the winver app and post that result here. Finally, from an elevated ("run as administrator") command prompt type:

    slmgr /dlv

    Post that result here as well. It will not contain any unique identification information so you don't have to blank anything out before posting.

    Using those three results we can tell you what the issue is.

    Here's how to post screenshots:
    Screenshots and Files - Upload and Post in Ten Forums - Windows 10 Forums

    in search type snip and run the snipping tool app to capture screenshots.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails slmgr  dlv.JPG   Winver.JPG  
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  8.    23 Feb 2016 #8
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    The problem is that you have Windows 10 Pro installed. You were only licensed for Windows Home previously.

    Also, just a side note, I believe you might have inserted a space between / and dlv. The proper command is:

    slmgr /dlv

    The results you posted are from slmgr /? or slmgr with an unrecognized option. But we don't need that info any more.

    Go back and re-install Windows 10 Home (has to be clean install, sorry) and you should activate just fine.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    23 Feb 2016 #9
    Join Date : Feb 2016
    Posts : 7
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    So I can download windows 10 Home and it should be ok? I'm assuming from your prior post that it will recognize my windows 8.1 key and allow a clean download.


    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLCDR View Post
    The problem is that you have Windows 10 Pro installed. You were only licensed for Windows Home previously.

    Also, just a side note, I believe you might have inserted a space between / and dlv. The proper command is:

    slmgr /dlv

    The results you posted are from slmgr /? or slmgr with an unrecognized option. But we don't need that info any more.

    Go back and re-install Windows 10 Home (has to be clean install, sorry) and you should activate just fine.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  10.    23 Feb 2016 #10
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    The most current download for Windows 10 install media will contain both the Home and Pro versions and should read the Windows 8 key stored in bios and not ask you for a version to install or for a product key - after you boot from the install media and select install to do a clean install. If it does, you probably downloaded either the "N" or Single Language Edition. It appears as if you want just the plain Windows 10 English United States edition.

    To make a bootable install USB flash drive or DVD, I recommend just letting media creation tool do it for you:
    Option One here:
    USB Flash Drive - Create to Install Windows 10 - Windows 10 Forums

    If you want to make a DVD instead of USB Flash Drive, on step 7 select ISO File instead of USB Flash Drive.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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