Microsoft Windows OEM FAQs and Downloads

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17 thoughts on “Microsoft Windows OEM FAQs and Downloads

  1. I just upgraded Dell Latitude E4200 running Windows XP to Windows 10 Pro 64 bit. First I used an original genuine Dell Windows 7 Pro 64 bit DVD to install Windows 7. Activation of Windows 7 was automatic.
    I then used the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool to install Windows 10 Pro 64 bit as an upgrade to Windows 7. Again activation of Windows 10 was automatic.

    1. Thanks for letting me know you had a successful fresh activation. That system has a Windows 7 Pro License (it would of had downgrade rights to Windows XP Pro) and now you have upgraded to Windows 10 Pro.

      1. Hi Philip,

        The COA on the laptop is Windows Vista Business. The laptop was built on 13/10/2009 about the same time Windows 7 became available. There was a free upgrade to Windows 7 offered at the time. I remember having to submit service tag details to Dell and they sent out Windows 7 disks. However I bought this particular laptop second hand December 2012, well after the Windows 7 free upgrade offer expired.

        I have also upgraded an old Dell Precision M90 using the same method. I bought that second hand in 2009 and probably installed Windows XP on it. I then probably upgraded it to Windows 7 using a DELL OEM disk and when the free Windows 10 upgrade was announced I thought I'd give it a go and sure enough it worked. I even got a video driver installed to ensure 1920×1080 resolution. I think that laptop is the oldest I've installed Windows 10 on – built in August 2007!

        I've got a busted up Latitude X1, maybe I'll give that a go.

        Cheers,
        Wayne

      2. Its one of the models sold with either Windows Vista or Windows 7 (Dell were selling it when Windows 7 was launched and the ones they sold with Vista were eligible for a free upgrade to Windows 7). That free upgrade was advertised as time-limited however Dell released a BIO Update which would have changed the SLIC from 2.5 to 2.6 (meaning a Dell Windows 7 Reinstallation DVD would work on it). Likewise with the Dell Precision M90. The Latitude X1 was released in 2005… it will not have a upgraded SLIC and Windows 7 should not automatically activate on it.

  2. I was given a Dell Precision M6600 Win 7 Pro 64 bit with 2 300 GB HDD. It is dinged up on the outside but it seems like most everything is functional. Here is the issue – BitLocker is active and I don't have the PIN. My plan is to upgrade to Win 10 Pro. My understanding is BitLocker only encrypts the files not the OS. I have not been able to find a way around BitLocker and allow Win 7 to boot-up. I was able to boot the system from a CD with GHOST. I have reached the point where I am thinking of just formatting the HDDs and starting from there with a fresh install of Win 7 Pro and then upgrading to Win 10 Pro. The system has a valid MS Win 7 key code. What is the least technically challenging method with the least cost to get this laptop into usable condition?
    FYI
    Disk 1 is C:
    Disk 2 is D: & E:
    Both are non-RAID disks

    1. No need to bother with Win 7 Pro, if you have the 25 digit Product Key use it directly to clean install Windows 10 Pro (input the product key during installation, the Windows 10 Installation Media will accept it, install Windows 10 Pro and activate automatically when online).

      That system doesn't have Dell Data Wipe but you can use something like Parted Magic to perform a secure wipe of the hard drive(s) before installation although personally I would just change the drives out for a relatively inexpensive 250 GB SSD which will lead to a huge boost in performance and clean install directly on that.

  3. Hi philipyip,
    Thank you so much for responding to my questions. I wish I had checked back the same day. I went off, did some Googling and reading, downloaded a MS tool, and created a bootable USB with a Win 7 Pro 64 bit ISO file. By tapping F2 during the laptop boot-up, I accessed the BIOS boot sequence and changed it to USB. Now the laptop loaded Win 7 from the USB. I was then able to access the Command Prompt window. I used Diskpart to clean, partition, and format (NTFS) the HDD. BitLocker be gone! Now I have a fresh install of Win 7 Pro. There were a lot more steps and they all did not go as smoothly as my explanation. LOL! I took the scenic route and learned a few things along the way. My goal is still to upgrade to Win 10.
    Now I have a few new questions . My MS Product Key is actually for Win 7 Pro OA, which I understand is the OEM version I should have downloaded from the Dell website. I'm concerned that without the OEM version some of the laptop features may not work or work poorly. Also the laptop has two 298 GB HDDs and I've become convinced I should partition (for many reasons) but I could use some expert advice on how many and how big and for what benefit. I like fast computers, easy to use & maintain (backup) that work for me not me working for the computer. Then there is this RAID option. Why does the laptop have it, what is it good for, is it anything I need to consider?
    Roy

    1. You can use the Microsoft version. The Dell ISOs only have slightly more updates and basic system drivers, product activation and Dell branding in system properties. You still need to install the drivers to get full functionality. Windows 10 will include or automatically update drivers in most cases. HDDs are slow, you should consider replacing them with SSDs.

  4. Hello Philip, I have an old Inspiron 15and the HDD is broken. Where can I find out the original Win 8 key?

    1. It is embedded in the hardware, Windows 10 installation media should automatically input it during installation.

      1. Great, so I can download Win 10 ISO and install it without any issues. Thanks!

      2. Yes, you can download Windows 10 Version 2004 Insider Preview Slow Track ISO or the Windows 10 Version 1909 Media Creation Tool to get the slightly older ISO.

  5. Hi

    I had purchase Dell inspiron-15-3521, with Original windows 10. Issue is that my I reinstall my windows and now activation key is missing.

    what can i do now. as System continuously asking Product key

    1. The product key is embedded in the ACPI Tables of the UEFI BIOS… Windows 10 Installation Media should automatically input it during installation. When using Windows 10 Installation Media from Microsoft, you are asked for a Product Key (during installation)? If you install RWEverything and go to Access and then ACPI tables do you have a MSDM tab and a SLIC tab?

  6. My laptop model is Dell XPS M1530. it was purchased in the year 2009.
    Operating system: Windows vista (home pack (genuine), copyright @2007, service pack 1.
    Processor: Intel (R) Core (TM) 2 Duo CPU T9300 @2.50 GHz, RAM 4 GB. 32-bit

    I would like to install window 10 in this laptop. I tried to download win 10, but unable to installed because of (ISO) file. I also tried to upgrade through Original Window-vista CD with help of key, but it shows upgrade is disabled, it can be done through window only.

    So please help and suggest how to installed window 10, in this laptop.

    1. You can't perform an upgrade install of Windows Vista to Windows 10. You need to clean install. Create a Bootable USB (MBR partition scheme and NTFS formatted for such an old model). Rufus 3.x is incompatible with Windows Vista so you will need to use 2.x. You won't have a Windows 10 compatible product key but you can install Windows 10 Home without a Product Key to run it unlicensed. Some minor customisation settings will greyed out and there will be a small watermark on your desktop but otherwise it should be fully functional. There is no point spending £ on a new key on such an old model (better to save it towards a newer model or newer second hand model).

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