Installation and Activation of Windows 10 Pro

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  1. Posts : 14,577
    Windows 10 IoT
       #31

    OEM Embedded Keys started with Windows 8.0. Before that, all that's in the BIOS on an OEM PC is an OEM marker/SLIC table. It has the manufacturer info, HP or Dell etc, And what Edition of Windows is authorized, XP, Vista, 7, etc. No product code is stored in that marker. To make use of the SLIC table you need matching custom OEM branded install media.
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  2. Posts : 339
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       #32

    Wynona said:
    Well, I'll be darned! I was told that Windows 7 wouldn't have the key embedded in the BIOS!

    Yes, very confusing, to say the least. So, I'm assuming you started out with OEM Windows 7 Home or Home Premium?
    No, this PC was tainted with Windows 8 when I purchased it, but I quickly "upgraded" to a Windows 7 Pro key. I believe the 10 key is stored in the BIOS, I'll have to check. Doesn't seem to realize I own 10 Pro though.

    EDIT: Yep! It had Win 8 RTM Core, an OEM version. *shudder* My poor baby. I was so disappointed about that when I bout this PC. Not only that, but it had all the ASUS bloatware that I so despise. I love their machines but their software.... not so much. It has its uses, but I prefer to do without.

    Thanks for that link to ShowKey. I've used similar software in the past, but don't recall ever seeing the BIOS key before. Now I have my Win 10 Pro key AND the Win 8 BIOS key just in case MS decides to discontinue the ability to use a 7 or 8 Pro key to upgrade Win 10 in the future.
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  3. Posts : 12,421
    Win10 Version 21H2 Pro and Home, Win11 Pro
       #33

    Microsoft has already discontinued most of the free Upgrades to Win10, haven't yet seen any mention of whether they will offer a cheaper Upgrade version of Win10 in the Retail channels that would rely upon those keys. But then I am not reading all the news about Windows "out there", tend to rely more on forums as long as the Subjects remain in the proper categories, i.e. News within News, problems within problems, etc.
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  4. Posts : 14,577
    Windows 10 IoT
       #34

    GuyInDogSuit said:
    No, this PC was tainted with Windows 8 when I purchased it, but I quickly "upgraded" to a Windows 7 Pro key. I believe the 10 key is stored in the BIOS, I'll have to check. Doesn't seem to realize I own 10 Pro though.

    EDIT: Yep! It had Win 8 RTM Core, an OEM version. *shudder* My poor baby. I was so disappointed about that when I bout this PC. Not only that, but it had all the ASUS bloatware that I so despise. I love their machines but their software.... not so much. It has its uses, but I prefer to do without.

    Thanks for that link to ShowKey. I've used similar software in the past, but don't recall ever seeing the BIOS key before. Now I have my Win 10 Pro key AND the Win 8 BIOS key just in case MS decides to discontinue the ability to use a 7 or 8 Pro key to upgrade Win 10 in the future.
    A lot of those key finder utilities just pull the current key in use from the Windows registry. And that's not always the key you want. The 10 Pro generic key is all you need if the PC has a Digital License for 10 Pro. Put it in a PID.txt file, as already mentioned, and you can skip having to enter it and doing the extra steps of upgrading from Home to Pro.
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  5. Posts : 339
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       #35

    Where is the PID.txt supposed to go, if you wipe the hard drive to reinstall Windows?
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  6. Posts : 29,075
    Windows 10 21H1 Build 19043.1023
    Thread Starter
       #36

    GuyInDogSuit said:
    Where is the PID.txt supposed to go, if you wipe the hard drive to reinstall Windows?
    I knew, but I've forgotten, Guy. Let me see if I can find where I was told how to use it.
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  7. Posts : 1,983
    Windows 10 x86 14383 Insider Pro and Core 10240
       #37

    PID.txt should go in the \sources folder of the setup ISO/DVD/USB for the Windows version to be installed.
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  8. Posts : 14,577
    Windows 10 IoT
       #38

    Yep, it goes in the sources folder of your install media.
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  9. Posts : 339
    Windows 10 Pro x64
       #39

    Ahh, OK, that makes more sense then.
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  10. Posts : 29,075
    Windows 10 21H1 Build 19043.1023
    Thread Starter
       #40

    Fafhrd said:
    PID.txt should go in the \sources folder of the setup ISO/DVD/USB for the Windows version to be installed.
    Right, but the instructions would be very helpful for those who never had them, or, as in my case, have forgotten.

    I remember that you need to create a text file with the actual product key, but that's about all I remember.

    I'd love to have it again; this time I'd save it.
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