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  1.    16 Aug 2015 #21

    If you just want to extend the lifetime of your existing Windows 10 installation, one that began life with a technology preview license that time-bombs in January 2016, all you have to do is buy a retail version of Windows 10 either from a store or directly from Microsoft online. You will receive a retail package activation key with your receipt. Replace the technology preview key with the retail key you just bought using slmgr (someone else will have to give you the correct option, I don't want to guess).

    You will not have to reinstall Windows 10, nor will you have to reinstall any of your applications. Given the correct key, Microsoft's activation server will see your installation as a retail package and activate it accordingly. This is the only option available to you that does not involve upgrading your existing Windows 7 installation.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    16 Aug 2015 #22
    Join Date : Jan 2015
    Posts : 152
    Win7
    Thread Starter

    So even though I have a legitimate, paid-for version of Win7 and I did a clean install of Win10 according to the rules at the time I still have to buy a key for Win10 even though it is clearly stated that it is a free upgrade?

    Like I said, this is not reasonable.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  3.    16 Aug 2015 #23

    The "free" offer is for an upgrade to an existing licensed and activated installation of Windows 7, 8 or 8.1. You're trying to get a free copy of Windows 10 and that was never part of the deal.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    16 Aug 2015 #24
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    Penns Forrest
    Posts : 3,506
    Win_8.1-Pro, Win_10.1607-Pro, Mint_17.3

    Quote Originally Posted by bbinnard View Post
    Do slmgr /upk to remove the illegal product key.

    But I did not use an illegal key. The key was published by MS and is listed on this site. No one ever said anything about it expiring in 6 months.
    .....
    You can argue about it or you can solve the issue.

    The KMS activation is a hack.

    The keys on this site were public keys for the Insider Program builds
    - they have since been blacklisted and will not activate. No Preview key will activate Windows.

    You MUST do an upgrade first - it's always been stated this way.

    Members are spending their time to help you, please don't waste it.

    Upgrade, then Clean install - it's really simple.
    You've complicated the process by trying to shortcut the correct procedure, now you have to start over.

    I tired it to just to see what would happen and guess what - same thing ... I had to follow the prescribed methods to activate my install.

    What could have happened was that I essentially installed an Insider's build, but the Insider Program is temporarily suspended. I did not try to use the MS account to see if it would activate as an Insider build or not - I suspect it would, but I didn't want an Insider build, I wanted to test the Retail upgrade / Clean install.

    What did I learn? Among other things ... you have to upgrade first or run an Insider's build - period
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    16 Aug 2015 #25
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    Penns Forrest
    Posts : 3,506
    Win_8.1-Pro, Win_10.1607-Pro, Mint_17.3

    Quote Originally Posted by bbinnard View Post
    So even though I have a legitimate, paid-for version of Win7 and I did a clean install of Win10 according to the rules at the time I still have to buy a key for Win10 even though it is clearly stated that it is a free upgrade?

    Like I said, this is not reasonable.
    The rules are very clear - you misunderstand.
    According to the rules at the time - you must Upgrade the qualifying OS first.

    You do not have to buy anything - just follow the instructions.

    Good luck.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  6.    16 Aug 2015 #26

    Quote Originally Posted by bbinnard View Post
    So even though I have a legitimate, paid-for version of Win7 and I did a clean install of Win10 according to the rules at the time I still have to buy a key for Win10 even though it is clearly stated that it is a free upgrade?

    Like I said, this is not reasonable.
    NavyLCDR has given you all the advice you need for the free upgrade - you have a backup so worst case scenario you restore that... no biggie... We have all gone through it.

    Having an illegal installation can be deactivated at anytime by MS, so why risk it?

    BTW it's not the key that is illegal, it's the method (i.e. using a KMS server that has not been provided by an organisation that has given you their authorization)
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    16 Aug 2015 #27
    Join Date : Jan 2015
    Posts : 152
    Win7
    Thread Starter

    OK - I give up. I will replace my new Win10 boot disk with my old (legitimate/legal/paid for) Win7.1 disk and see if I can get the "free" Win10 upgrade. If I can I'll do the upgrade, remove the Win7 disk, and put in my current Win10 disk. And see what happens.

    I wonder if my Win7.1 will in fact get upgraded OK. And if it does, I wonder what will happen when I reboot with my Win10 disk.

    Should be an interesting afternoon.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  8.    16 Aug 2015 #28
    Join Date : Aug 2015
    Posts : 441
    Windows 10

    Quote Originally Posted by bbinnard View Post
    OK - I give up. I will replace my new Win10 boot disk with my old (legitimate/legal/paid for) Win7.1 disk and see if I can get the "free" Win10 upgrade. If I can I'll do the upgrade, remove the Win7 disk, and put in my current Win10 disk. And see what happens.

    I wonder if my Win7.1 will in fact get upgraded OK. And if it does, I wonder what will happen when I reboot with my Win10 disk.

    Should be an interesting afternoon.
    I suspect you will have the same problem because of the key you have in there at the moment.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    16 Aug 2015 #29
    Join Date : Jan 2015
    Posts : 152
    Win7
    Thread Starter

    Well that is not very encouraging.

    The key I have now was given by MS when they released Build 10240. I don't think I have done anything illegal or counter to Microsoft's licensing terms.

    At any rate, I'm about tio click "Upgrade this PC now" (I am back on Win7.1 now) and hopefully what will happen is MS will "register" (whatever that means) my current hardware configuration and then when I reboot with my WIn10 disk it will somhow (as if by magic) get recognized as a legitimate (whatever that means) installation of Win10.

    Edit:

    While waiting for the "Making sure you're ready to install" dialog I did some searching for Windows 10 Activation Key and found this paragraph:

    Entitlements, not product keys

    When you use the free upgrade to Windows 10 or pay for a digital retail version, you don’t get a product key. Instead, your computer uses what Microsoft calls a digital entitlement.
    “Upon upgrading to Windows 10, the activation state from a prior version of Windows (be it Windows 7, Windows 8 or a prior build of Windows 10) is seamlessly carried over,” a Microsoft spokesperson told PCWorld. “Once activated, a digital entitlement for your PC’s hardware is created in the Windows 10 activation service.This entitlement can be used by the same PC again for re-activation of the same Edition of Windows 10 in the future.”
    It looks like the product key is on its way out, at least as far as users are concerned. After installation, your version of Windows 10 should just activate in the background in a few moments or a few days at the most. You can check your activation status by going toSettings > Update & Security > Activation.

    That seems like it says my Win10 should somehow activate itself after I finish installing the WIn10 upgrade. We'll see....I'm at teh Ready to install screen now....
    Last edited by bbinnard; 16 Aug 2015 at 14:37.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  10.    16 Aug 2015 #30
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    Penns Forrest
    Posts : 3,506
    Win_8.1-Pro, Win_10.1607-Pro, Mint_17.3

    Quote Originally Posted by bbinnard View Post
    Well that is not very encouraging.

    The key I have now was given by MS when they released Build 10240. I don't think I have done anything illegal or counter to Microsoft's licensing terms.

    At any rate, I'm about tio click "Upgrade this PC now" (I am back on Win7.1 now) and hopefully what will happen is MS will "register" (whatever that means) my current hardware configuration and then when I reboot with my WIn10 disk it will somhow (as if by magic) get recognized as a legitimate (whatever that means) installation of Win10.
    No magic - you'll still have to do a Clean install on the SSD, the data on the drive won't automagically get changed.

    So yes, you have to install twice (upgrade, then Clean install).
    By the terms of the EULA, you have to remove the upgraded Win10 from the HDD to install Clean on the SSD.

    The choice is yours - run Win10 as an upgrade or do the Clean install after upgrading and abide by the EULA.

    The good news tough is that once Win10 is activated by upgrading Win7, activation will work on that machine.
    You do NOT need a key (there are no valid keys unless you bought Win10).

    Neither the upgrade or a subsequent Clean install need a key to activate.
    If prompted for a key, press the Skip this or Do this later text in the lower left.

    Entering any key, might set you back to step 1 - no one wants that
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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