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  1.    27 Jul 2016 #41
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    You only get the option to delete the partitions on the hard drive when you boot from the USB flash drive or DVD. That is what you need to figure out how to do.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    27 Jul 2016 #42
    Join Date : May 2016
    Posts : 16
    Windows 7 / 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by NavyLCDR View Post
    You only get the option to delete the partitions on the hard drive when you boot from the USB flash drive or DVD. That is what you need to figure out how to do.
    Indeed. I'm absolutely booting from the USB drive, no issue there. but when it brings up the HDs and list of partitions, there are several very small (~100MB?) partitions that, when you click on them, the "DELETE" button ghosts out, so I literally cannot delete them. One is called "Reserved" or "OEM Reserved" or something like that...

    What is strange is that, either way, I've deleted and formatted plenty of space of the HD itself, so there *SHOULD* be no problem for Windows 10 to create a new partition there. I believe the issue is the USB stick/BIOS confusion. Thanks for your patience with me.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  3.    27 Jul 2016 #43
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by nealzibub View Post
    Indeed. I'm absolutely booting from the USB drive, no issue there. but when it brings up the HDs and list of partitions, there are several very small (~100MB?) partitions that, when you click on them, the "DELETE" button ghosts out, so I literally cannot delete them. One is called "Reserved" or "OEM Reserved" or something like that...
    What I would suggest, then is to read my quote in the middle of the OP here:
    Windows 10 Recovery Tools - Bootable Rescue Disk - Windows 10 Forums

    Download Kyhi's recovery drive. Mount the ISO file. On your Windows 10 installation USB flash drive, in the sources folder. rename the boot.wim file to boot.bak. Copy the boot.wim file from the sources folder in the mounted ISO file of Kyhi's recovery drive to the sources folder on the Windows 10 USB flash drive. Then boot the problem computer with the modified Windows 10 USB flash drive. It will boot into Kyhi's recovery. Run MiniTool Partition Wizard and try to wipe the problem hard drive with that. If that is successful, then just use file explorer to run setup.exe from the USB flash drive and that will start Windows setup just like if you booted directly into Windows setup from the flash drive.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    29 Jul 2016 #44
    Join Date : May 2016
    Posts : 16
    Windows 7 / 10
    Thread Starter

    Praise Jeebus! Threw a different HD in the machine, and installed Windows 10 without any issues. Said I didn't have a key...Thank you again NavyLCDR...

    So, "we're" pretty confident that in 10/30/6/90 days I'm not going to start getting some pop-up windows about how I have an invalid cop of Windows 10 or something??

    So excited to have a working desktop again...but cautiously optimistic...
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    29 Jul 2016 #45
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 9,552
    Windows 10 Pro

    Glad it worked for you! You'll be fine for activation. There is actually more chance of losing activation if you use a product key than if you skip it. If you use a shady product key that you get off of ebay, that might cause you problems in the future - but if you skip entering the product key and get activated with the digital entitlement from Microsoft then you know you are good to go!
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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