Windows 10: Changed laptop's HDD to SSD, want to transfer windows 10 key Solved

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  1.    10 Dec 2016 #11

    JoshieWashua said: View Post
    activated with a digital license linked to my account. Thank you!!
    ...and that's the weird part - why have a Win 10 OEM Home licence then get a digital activation? Seems to me more and more that the old key activation method is being phased out.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  2. Posts : 382
    Windows 10 Home x64
       11 Dec 2016 #12

    NavyLCDR said: View Post
    Which had me wondering the whole time how the OP ended up with Windows 10 Pro installed.... Windows setup should have detected the product key for Home and not gave the choice to install Pro. Unless it was build 10240 Pro they had downloaded.
    When I was trying to upgrade install from 1511 to AU 1607 it didn't give a choice, I upgraded/replaced my motherboard and did a clean install (with your help) I booted from a USB with Kyhi's recovery tools, after deleting partitions I clicked on the W10 setup and was given the choice of Pro or Home.

    I believe when a clean install is done with the iso since it has both Pro and Home on it, the user is given a choice because the iso has no way of knowing what (if anything) was there before. If I remember correctly Pro is listed first so it would be easy to accidently pick it.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  3.    11 Dec 2016 #13

    CmmTch said: View Post
    When I was trying to upgrade install from 1511 to AU 1607 it didn't give a choice, I upgraded/replaced my motherboard and did a clean install (with your help) I booted from a USB with Kyhi's recovery tools, after deleting partitions I clicked on the W10 setup and was given the choice of Pro or Home.

    I believe when a clean install is done with the iso since it has both Pro and Home on it, the user is given a choice because the iso has no way of knowing what (if anything) was there before. If I remember correctly Pro is listed first so it would be easy to accidently pick it.
    The reason you were given the choice was because there was no Windows product key in the UEFI/BIOS for Windows 10 to detect. Except for the initial build 10240 - if Windows 10 detects a product key in UEFI/BIOS (or the user enters a Product Key when asked for it), Windows 10 setup will use that product key to determine which edition to install and not ask the user. Also, if Windows 10 setup detects a product key in UEFI/BIOS, it will not ask the user to enter one.

    There have been many of us who have done upgrades to Windows 10 Pro on our computers that have product keys for Home in the UEFI/BIOS. When we do clean installs, Windows 10 will install Home by default, unless we put a product key for Pro in a PID.txt file to force the Pro install.

    @alphanumeric will confirm this.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    13 Dec 2016 #14

    I can confirm what NavyLCDR posted. My laptop has an OEM embedded key for 8.0 Core. If I use stock install media I get 10 Home by default with no prompt for a key and no option to select Home or Pro. I had originally upgraded from Core to Pro with one of my MSDN keys. Then to 8.1 Pro. My free upgrade was dome from 8.1 Pro. The first time I got Home instead of Pro on a clean install I just used the Change Product Key option and entered the generic Pro key. Windows then upgraded to Pro and activated with the Digital License I already had via the free upgrade. If I had not already had a DL it would have just upgraded but not activated. Now I add a PID.txt with the generic Pro key in it. It's the same deal, no prompt for a key and no option to select Home or Pro. But it installs Pro by default instead of Home.

    My desktop PC has no embedded key. On that PC I get prompted for a key and get the pick Home or Pro option. If I use stock install media. I use a PID.txt on that PC too just to speed things up a little.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    16 Dec 2016 #15

    JoshieWashua said: View Post
    I'm typing this on the laptop right now. HDD it came with was the slowest hard drive I've ever encountered in my life, so I've swapped it out for a snappy SSD. Rather than cloning it to the SSD, I did a clean install, because I don't want all of acer's bloatware.

    I've read that my laptop must have come with a Win 10 OEM key, and that those aren't transferable between different systems. Because this is the same system, with only a different hard drive, will it work? And how do I do it if I can?

    I'm using unlicensed windows 10 right now, and I'm wondering if I can use the key that my original hard drive still has on it.

    Of course the laptop didn't come with a key on the bottom, or in the manuals, like older versions of windows did.

    Thanks
    Hi there

    suggestion -- Don't throw away the old HDD -- get a SATA-->USB connector and then use that drive for storing backups. !!!!

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    03 Jan 2017 #16

    Two possibilities. Put the old hard drive back in and download and run pruductkey.exe, yes that is the correct spelling. ...Secondly. I have changed hard drives too with no problem. BUT with the prior drive I was registered with Microsoft with a outlook.com email. Then on the next install skip the 25-digit spot. Once you get a desktop, just sign in with Microsoft, and your new install is activated. Has worked twice for me.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    04 Jan 2017 #17

    sam2fish said: View Post
    download and run pruductkey.exe, yes that is the correct spelling. ...
    Never heard of that ...are you sure you are not referring to ProduKey? If not, do you have a link to that app?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    04 Jan 2017 #18

    You could be right. It was spelled unusual.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    04 Jan 2017 #19

    Superfly said: View Post
    ...and that's the weird part - why have a Win 10 OEM Home licence then get a digital activation? Seems to me more and more that the old key activation method is being phased out.
    Hi C (belated response)

    This was a significant change with version 1607 - ie you get a digital licence now however you activate (upgrade or product key). The plus point is you can now reinstall on same pc even if you do not know the product key.

    A side effect of that is that it makes it possible to transfer oem licences to another device EVEN though that is against the EULA. Not suggesting people should do this of course. Frankly, I do not think MS really care about this as their whole commercial model is based on getting as many people (and keeping them) in the windows ecosphere. In reality, the distinction between retail and oem has become rather blurred.

    This is further implied by the fact you can run it unactivated ad nauseam, with only (and relatively unobtrusive) occasional nags to buy a licence. Of course, you would not get the benefit of a digital licence here.

    One interesting point about digital licences is they cannot be transferred many times (three max from my testing) before they get blocked. There does not seem to be any way to move it after this unlike product keys where you can use telephone activation as often as you need.

    I am inclined to think MS will phase out product keys and all pcs will just have digital licences at some point and the old retail/oem distinction will disappear. Oem system builder licences etc will be a thing of the past. It may even become impossible to"illegally" buy volume licence keys as a member of public in future.


    cheers

    M.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    04 Jan 2017 #20

    Thanx M for that.. been struggling with getting to grips on how to troubleshoot digital licences to include in the Activation diagnostic tool, - thus far all I have is the activation server reported code and the store licensing event log (really cryptic stuff) to go on...

    I agree that it's making the EULA difficult to enforce...not that it ever was, TBH.

    I don't think the OEM's are at all knowledgeable about digital activation to provide support - thus that will have to shift to MS (especially if activated with an MSA)
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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