Fresh RE-install for free upgrade to windows 10?


  1. Posts : 26
    10
       #1

    Fresh RE-install for free upgrade to windows 10?


    Several months ago I got the free upgrade from Win 7 to 10. I did fresh install onto a blank HDD using a proper ISO and used the key on the bottom of my Toshiba laptop. Toshiba provided no Win 10 drivers, but I got everything working with 7 and 8 drivers. Now the question occurs to me, if something goes terribly wrong and I choose to do a fresh re-install, will I be able to do it with that same Win 7 key? Just in case the answer is "no", I've already made of clone of my HDD, which I can put into service should the need arise. Is MS planning on our future need to do a fresh reinstall, and then facing the only option of having to buy a Win 10 key?
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  2. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,843
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #2

    Having installed Win 10 you can reinstall it on the same system. That includes changing the disk drive. Activation should be automatic- no key needed.
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  3. Posts : 26
    10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    dalchina said:
    Having installed Win 10 you can reinstall it on the same system. That includes changing the disk drive. Activation should be automatic- no key needed.
    If I install a new blank HDD into my laptop, how does MS know to automatically activate a reinstall? My experience is that in a Win 10 install, the first thing asked for is a key and if you don't provide a key the installation won't continue.
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  4. cereberus's Avatar
    Posts : 12,010
    Windows10
       #4

    jona9 said:
    If I install a new blank HDD into my laptop, how does MS know to automatically activate a reinstall? My experience is that in a Win 10 install, the first thing asked for is a key and if you don't provide a key the installation won't continue.
    When you upgrade, the (digital) licence is tied to the mobo, and this is registered with MS. So next time you install, MS know by your mobo id, you have a digital licence and activation is automatic. Just skip key entry.

    It works fine in most cases - in fact, I did it myself today.
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  5. Posts : 26
    10
    Thread Starter
       #5

    So, just say "I don't have a key" and all will be fine?
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