Installing XP Home on a new computer

Old 02-08-06, 12:21 PM
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Installing XP Home on a new computer

My son's Dell desktop recently bit the dust due to a power surge. I was able to pick up a used Dell as a replacement, however there is no OS on this replacement as the company that sells these machines wipes the hard drives before selling them.

I used the restore CD supplied with the original Dell and now I keep getting reminders to "register" the software. When I type in the 25 character product key from the old Dell, I get a message that the product key is invalid. Obviously, this is to prevent using a single copy of the OS on multiple computers and this product key I am using matches up with the now defunct Dell.

How can I get this OS installed on the used Dell I just purchased. I should be able "reuse" the OS now that the original machine is toast.

I'm trying to avoid going out and buying a new version of XP and paying the high cost.

I got the product key right off of the sticker on the side of the old Dell. Is there any other place where another product key might be located. I have not seen another product key on the restore CD.
Old 02-08-06, 02:47 PM
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read "reformat hard drive, without Fdisk"

I posted a similar question this week and the responses are in the
"Reformat hard drive, without "fdisk" thread near the bottom of this page. I'd copy the link but I don't know how.

Pay attention to the last couple of posts. If this doesn't work, I'm sure you'll get plenty of good advice in this forum.
Old 02-08-06, 03:07 PM
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Is it Microsoft that is generating this message? You may be able to contact them, and they may allow the use of this version. They should have information in the message about how to do this.

If they insist that you have to contact Dell (since it's a branded OEM copy of the software) you may run into trouble. The problem is that the copy of the software you have was sold for the hardware that died. Since the hardware died, the software may be dead too. Dell has no legal responsibility to allow the software to work on different hardware.

Good luck.
Old 02-08-06, 06:14 PM
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Save yourself the agony and frustration of calling Microsoft. They will tell you to call Dell.

Isn't there a serial number on the sleeve that restore disk came in? It may also be in the manual that came with the Dell.

If you do need to buy the new OS, search the net for oem versions. They will be cheaper. To get the oem version, you will need to buy hardware, something cheap like a new mouse. Some dealers package it with a cable as the "hardware".

Oh - and buy a good surge protector. Not one of the wally-world cheapies.

Surge protectors do wear out.
Old 02-09-06, 06:52 AM
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What your wanting to do is possible, however you will need to contact Microsoft. I'm not techno-savy on the wording, but MS has set up XP to check certain perameters of your computer to make sure it is not being copied and used on other systems. It will look at things like the Ghz, RAM size etc. If these do not match then it won't let you continue usage.

You can ask for extensions of the license if you contact MS and let them know your situation, however you may have difficulty since it is coming from a Dell computer and a packaged deal. They may have you pay for an extension of the license which shouldn't be as expensive as buying a new one.
Old 02-09-06, 07:03 AM
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Product activation information is only active for 120 days after you install WinXP (or any other Microsoft product that requires activation, for that matter). After that 120 days, you can re-install and re-activate the product without a problem, and without having to call Microsoft. I do a lot of swapping of hardware and re-formatting of my computer, so I've had to deal with this many times before.

In other words, unless you had activated that copy of WinXP in the last 120 days, you shouldn't have any problem re-activating it on another computer. That being said, the fact that you are being prevented from activating it indicates that that particular copy of WinXP is tied directly to the old Dell hardware, and won't install on another machine.

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