Win10 - product key obscured!

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  1. Posts : 5
    Win10
       #1

    Win10 - product key obscured!


    This may sound a bit absurd but having devoted nearly 2 days getting a new Win10 installation fully updated, I now cannot read the product key to activate the system.
    The reason being that the 'MICROSOFT' security sticker covering the key has left a glue residue that's tougher than old boots. Apart from the first two blocks of characters it's impossible to uncover the remaining glue without destroying the key.
    Microsoft refuse to engage in chat on the issue without the key. I believe this a genuine Microsoft product as it came in a security closed packet purchased for decent money from a reputable UK supplier.
    Anyone else experienced this problem with MS products? Thanks for any advice.
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 1,867
    Windows 10 Pro 2004 20H1
       #2

    Download and run the free portable tool ShowKeyPlus.

    Release ShowKeyPlus Preview . Superfly-Inc/ShowKeyPlus . GitHub

    The Installed Key is what you will use to activate.
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 5
    Win10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    Thanks for taking time to reply.
    Read link but didn't fully comprehend why it might be possible to retrieve a key on a new build system without any prior OS? What would be the reason for a product key if it can be circumvented?
    (Forced migration from XP)
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 11,654
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 21H2 Build 19044.1776
       #4

    Send it back to the supplier for a refund. If you cannot read the key then it is not fit for purpose.

    Denis
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 1,867
    Windows 10 Pro 2004 20H1
       #5

    Gibson330 said:
    Thanks for taking time to reply.
    Read link but didn't fully comprehend why it might be possible to retrieve a key on a new build system without any prior OS? What would be the reason for a product key if it can be circumvented?
    (Forced migration from XP)
    Missed that it was a clean install on a new build...

    Gibson330 said:
    This may sound a bit absurd but having devoted nearly 2 days getting a new Win10 installation fully updated
    The product key can be retrieved a number of ways.

    Nothing being circumvented, when it's you recovering your key on your system.

    If you need to clean install again, or re-activate, and you've lost the original packaging, its helpful to be able get that information.
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 3,449
       #6

    Gibson330 said:
    This may sound a bit absurd but having devoted nearly 2 days getting a new Win10 installation fully updated, I now cannot read the product key to activate the system.
    The reason being that the 'MICROSOFT' security sticker covering the key has left a glue residue that's tougher than old boots. Apart from the first two blocks of characters it's impossible to uncover the remaining glue without destroying the key.
    Microsoft refuse to engage in chat on the issue without the key. I believe this a genuine Microsoft product as it came in a security closed packet purchased for decent money from a reputable UK supplier.
    Anyone else experienced this problem with MS products? Thanks for any advice.
    Do you have a pic? the COA on the case is not obscured - what 'MICROSOFT' security sticker are you referring to?

    OK got it...

    On the System Builder card try nail polish remover.
      My Computer


  7. Posts : 12,486
    Win10 Version 21H2 Pro and Home, Win11 Pro
       #7

    The only time I got the COA sticker obscured was on a Renewed/Refurbished Notebook I got last year.
    Win10 - product key obscured!-image.jpg

    For the glue from stickers I prefer Ronsonol lighter fluid but cheap charcoal lighter will work. GooGone is okay but a bit harder to clean up.
      My Computers


  8. Posts : 913
    Win 10
       #8

    New COA's have like a lotto ticket grey spot covering some of the key. Carefully scratch it off like a lottery ticket.
    Win10 - product key obscured!-coa.jpg
      My Computers


  9. Posts : 1,495
    Win10 Pro
       #9

    Gibson330 said:
    This may sound a bit absurd but having devoted nearly 2 days getting a new Win10 installation fully updated, I now cannot read the product key to activate the system.
    The reason being that the 'MICROSOFT' security sticker covering the key has left a glue residue that's tougher than old boots. Apart from the first two blocks of characters it's impossible to uncover the remaining glue without destroying the key.
    Microsoft refuse to engage in chat on the issue without the key. I believe this a genuine Microsoft product as it came in a security closed packet purchased for decent money from a reputable UK supplier.
    Anyone else experienced this problem with MS products? Thanks for any advice.
    This happened to me with a Win7 sticker. It took me several calls to MS Tech Support as well as a photo of the damaged stacker. They finally relented and activated the PC with a remote connection. You’d think I was asking for the key to Fort Knox.
      My Computers


  10. Posts : 5
    Win10
    Thread Starter
       #10

    Great response to a first post. Much appreciate all the feedback.

    Try3 - agreed, "key is not fit for purpose". Seller not engaging claiming agent status. Think I need to understand UK Distance Selling Regulations before trying again.

    It's looking like I've now damaged the key with all my picking. Should be a photo showing the mess. Edit: not found upload option yet.

    With 30 years of various MS products, I don't remember any 'key' issues. They used to be easily readable without a magnifying glass and no formidable sticky label. Not sure why this additional hurdle is necessary when key is a 'one off' and delivered in a security sealed packet.

    SoFine409 - Good to know that you got a result with MS Tech Support. Will try cracking Fort Knox too.
      My Computer


 

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