Windows 10: Back up a licensed software?

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  1.    31 Mar 2018 #1

    Back up a licensed software?


    Hello,

    I have a really old laptop which I want to reinstall Windows 10 now because it was upgraded from 7 to 8 to 8.1 and now 10 (without a clean install) and has got crazy slow now.

    Problem is, there's a licensed version of a software on there and the person who's laptop it is, has lost it's license key.

    Is there anyway I can backup this software in some way to not lose the license after a Windows reinstall?
    Contacting the software company is not an option.

    Thank you.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,845
    10 Home x64 (1809) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       31 Mar 2018 #2

    lolcocks said: View Post
    ...I want to reinstall Windows 10 now because it was upgraded from 7 to 8 to 8.1 and now 10 (without a clean install) and has got crazy slow now.

    Problem is, there's a licensed version of a software on there and the person who's laptop it is, has lost it's license key.

    Is there anyway I can backup this software in some way to not lose the license after a Windows reinstall?
    Without knowing what the software is it's impossible to say. For earlier versions of Office there are ways to retrieve the key, but that may not be possible for other software. Anyway, if they've lost the key have they also lost the install files?

    I would try at all costs to avoid needing a clean install. Just because it started out with Windows 7 doesn't mean it would inevitably be slow after all those upgrades - mine isn't.

    Rationalizing the startup apps and services could help, after all these years there are bound to be some that aren't necessary. An in-place repair install would keep all apps, files and some settings, but reinstall Windows. See this tutorial.

    Repair Install Windows 10 with an In-place Upgrade

    Whatever you do, make sure you make a system image first so you can restore the original system should you run into problems.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  3.    31 Mar 2018 #3

    lolcocks said: View Post
    Hello,

    I have a really old laptop which I want to reinstall Windows 10 now because it was upgraded from 7 to 8 to 8.1 and now 10 (without a clean install) and has got crazy slow now.

    Problem is, there's a licensed version of a software on there and the person who's laptop it is, has lost it's license key.

    Is there anyway I can backup this software in some way to not lose the license after a Windows reinstall?
    Contacting the software company is not an option.

    Thank you.
    Have you looked in the program to see if the key is listed? Some programs will list the key in the About Program or in Settings. Also some programs will make you deactivate before you can reinstall.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    31 Mar 2018 #4

    You could try using Easeus PCTRANS. Its free version is limited to two apps so this may work.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    01 Apr 2018 #5

    Bree said: View Post
    Without knowing what the software is it's impossible to say. For earlier versions of Office there are ways to retrieve the key, but that may not be possible for other software. Anyway, if they've lost the key have they also lost the install files?

    I would try at all costs to avoid needing a clean install. Just because it started out with Windows 7 doesn't mean it would inevitably be slow after all those upgrades - mine isn't.

    Rationalizing the startup apps and services could help, after all these years there are bound to be some that aren't necessary. An in-place repair install would keep all apps, files and some settings, but reinstall Windows. See this tutorial.

    Repair Install Windows 10 with an In-place Upgrade

    Whatever you do, make sure you make a system image first so you can restore the original system should you run into problems.
    It's a software form HandsDownSoftware.com

    It's gotten way worse, Windows needs to be reinstalled.
    Task Manager shows all resources at less than 20% usage, yet opening explorer, right clicking taskbar, opening any simple piece of software takes 30 seconds.
    Installing CCleaner took an hour because during setup after extracting each single file the setup used to take a pause for 3 minutes.


    You say your Windows never slows down after upgrades? Tell me, do you use an SSD?



    Winuser said: View Post
    Have you looked in the program to see if the key is listed? Some programs will list the key in the About Program or in Settings. Also some programs will make you deactivate before you can reinstall.
    No point in using keys, the software seller just told me one key per installation. Just buy a new key if you want to install again. And the software costs a lot.


    cereberus said: View Post
    You could try using Easeus PCTRANS. Its free version is limited to two apps so this may work.
    Thank you, this is the answer I was looking back. Will report back if it works.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,845
    10 Home x64 (1809) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       01 Apr 2018 #6

    It's gotten way worse, Windows needs to be reinstalled.
    Task Manager shows all resources at less than 20% usage, yet opening explorer, right clicking taskbar, opening any simple piece of software takes 30 seconds...

    You say your Windows never slows down after upgrades? Tell me, do you use an SSD?
    No, it's the original 'spinner', in fact everything is 'as supplied by the manufacturer' - System One in my specs below. About 6 months before I took the free upgrade to 10 in Aug. 2015 I did a factory reset to the OEM Win7 Home Premium. After the initial 10240 RTM upgrade it has had the 1511, 1607, 1703 and 1709 upgrades. I try to keep it lean and clean, so after each upgrade or cumulative update I use Disk Clean-up's 'clean up system files' option.

    Some of the OEM bloatware has been uninstalled, but there's a preinstalled Office 2010 Starter I want to keep, also the free Windows DVD Player that came with the upgrade to 10 as a 'perk' for upgrading from a Media Centre edition of W7, hence the reluctance to do a clean install. Neither of those can be reinstalled.

    No point in using keys, the software seller just told me one key per installation. Just buy a new key if you want to install again. And the software costs a lot.
    That's a shame. I'd make a system image before wiping it in case you want to go back (or try one of the suggested migration tools). Either that or swap the drive for another and try the clean install on that. I suspect the slowness has other causes than just a lot of upgrades. Have you checked the health of the drive or the RAM? Have you scanned for malware or PUPs?
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  7.    01 Apr 2018 #7

    Bree said: View Post
    No, it's the original 'spinner', in fact everything is 'as supplied by the manufacturer' - System One in my specs below. About 6 months before I took the free upgrade to 10 in Aug. 2015 I did a factory reset to the OEM Win7 Home Premium. After the initial 10240 RTM upgrade it has had the 1511, 1607, 1703 and 1709 upgrades. I try to keep it lean and clean, so after each upgrade or cumulative update I use Disk Clean-up's 'clean up system files' option.

    Some of the OEM bloatware has been uninstalled, but there's a preinstalled Office 2010 Starter I want to keep, also the free Windows DVD Player that came with the upgrade to 10 as a 'perk' for upgrading from a Media Centre edition of W7, hence the reluctance to do a clean install. Neither of those can be reinstalled.



    That's a shame. I'd make a system image before wiping it in case you want to go back (or try one of the suggested migration tools). Either that or swap the drive for another and try the clean install on that. I suspect the slowness has other causes than just a lot of upgrades. Have you checked the health of the drive or the RAM? Have you scanned for malware or PUPs?

    Wow, that's impressive.
    Are you using any heavy softwares?

    In my office, just one Windows Upgrade and things slow down even with just six applications installed (Office, Revit, AutoCAD, VLC, Firefox and WinRAR). Applications such as Revit and AutoCAD have their performance reduced by atleast 30%. And this is just a Windows 10 to a new build of 10 upgrade, not even an 8 to 10 upgrade.



    cereberus said: View Post
    You could try using Easeus PCTRANS. Its free version is limited to two apps so this may work.

    Thank you for suggesting this, it got the software on the second machine but was unable to get the license. I don't know what to do now....
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,845
    10 Home x64 (1809) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       01 Apr 2018 #8

    lolcocks said: View Post
    Wow, that's impressive.
    Are you using any heavy softwares?

    In my office, just one Windows Upgrade and things slow down even with just six applications installed (Office, Revit, AutoCAD, VLC, Firefox and WinRAR). Applications such as Revit and AutoCAD have their performance reduced by atleast 30%. And this is just a Windows 10 to a new build of 10 upgrade, not even an 8 to 10 upgrade.
    I do image, video and audio processing. FFmpeg can use up to 100% CPU when heavily compressing a video in the background, but I have no trouble browsing or using Excel while it does that. Where I do get a slowdown is if I use Audacity to edit an hour of audio while FFmpeg is busy, but that's more down to lack of RAM and heavy use of the swapfile.

    ...it got the software on the second machine but was unable to get the license. I don't know what to do now....
    It may well be that the original install using a key tied the software to the original machine's hardware. A clean install and the migrated software may work if you put the drive in the original machine - provided, that is, that the drive isn't counted as part of the hardware.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  9.    01 Apr 2018 #9

    Bree said: View Post
    I do image, video and audio processing. FFmpeg can use up to 100% CPU when heavily compressing a video in the background, but I have no trouble browsing or using Excel while it does that. Where I do get a slowdown is if I use Audacity to edit an hour of audio while FFmpeg is busy, but that's more down to lack of RAM and heavy use of the swapfile.



    It may well be that the original install using a key tied the software to the original machine's hardware. A clean install and the migrated software may work if you put the drive in the original machine - provided, that is, that the drive isn't counted as part of the hardware.



    I guess the laptops I am using in office are not really that good.
    5400 RPM disks really slow down the performance as compared to 7200 ones which perform quite well on my one PC even after an upgrade.



    Nope, cannot even do a clean install. It's one key per install, not one key per machine.
    Use the key for one installation and it's used up.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,845
    10 Home x64 (1809) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       01 Apr 2018 #10

    lolcocks said: View Post
    Nope, cannot even do a clean install. It's one key per install, not one key per machine.
    Use the key for one installation and it's used up.
    What I meant was that if the software is tied to the machine's hardware, then a clean install and migrating the software with something like Easeus PCTRANS might work, provided you were still running it on the same hardware.
      My ComputersSystem Spec


 
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