Reinstalling OEM Windows

  • SilentTristero 24 Jan 2017 13:02:47 445 posts
    Seen 7 hours ago
    Registered 11 years ago
    Quick question regarding a clean install (of 7):

    I'm adding a 120GB SSD to my desktop, and since it's smaller than the current drive with Windows installed, I was planning on just doing a clean install to the SSD (I'm still looking into other options, but going clean seems like a lot less hassle).

    The problem is I have an OEM product key, which doesn't work on Microsoft's ISO download service (Which is retail-only). So what are my options for creating installation media for W7 Ultimate SP1?

    Edited by SilentTristero at 13:02:56 24-01-2017
  • Rivuzu 24 Jan 2017 13:04:00 18,378 posts
    Seen 12 hours ago
    Registered 13 years ago
    So long as you're not looking to upgrade to W10 from W7 (as I think the free upgrade period is now over).

    Alternatively, buy another OEM key?
  • SilentTristero 24 Jan 2017 13:17:09 445 posts
    Seen 7 hours ago
    Registered 11 years ago
    Well I have a valid key, but nothing to install with?

    I suppose what I need to know is; can I safely get the correct ISO somewhere else, will the key work, and will Windows happily 'activate' afterwards...

    Not bothered about W10 right now, the machine has relatively old hardware.
  • BigOrkWaaagh 24 Jan 2017 13:21:34 9,315 posts
    Seen 40 minutes ago
    Registered 13 years ago
    Yes, you can use any OEM W7 Ultimate disc and your key will work.
  • SilentTristero 24 Jan 2017 13:30:50 445 posts
    Seen 7 hours ago
    Registered 11 years ago
    Great, cheers for the replies.

    Can anyone recommend a source for the ISO?
  • TPReview 24 Jan 2017 14:17:12 1,380 posts
    Seen 3 hours ago
    Registered 7 years ago
    You can get it from the official website. At work now but if you google you should be able to find it.
  • SilentTristero 24 Jan 2017 14:45:19 445 posts
    Seen 7 hours ago
    Registered 11 years ago
    The Microsoft site won't let you access it without a retail key, unfortunately. OEM keys don't apply.

    I see a few alternatives that seem reliable enough, so I'll probably give one a shot. The idea of torrenting a windows ISO doesn't sit well with me though.

    Suppose I could potentially borrow a disc, on the slim chance I know anyone with an OEM Ultimate copy.
  • mrpon 24 Jan 2017 14:49:41 36,132 posts
    Seen 5 hours ago
    Registered 14 years ago
    For another 20 or so, I'd double the SSD capacity to be honest.
  • samharper 24 Jan 2017 14:50:55 1,119 posts
    Seen 2 hours ago
    Registered 8 years ago
    I might have an OEM Win7 disc lying around but I don't think it's ultimate
  • Malek86 24 Jan 2017 14:50:59 10,025 posts
    Seen 38 minutes ago
    Registered 13 years ago
    I think you can use the Windows Download Tool? It will also automatically put it onto a USB drive.
  • SilentTristero 24 Jan 2017 15:01:36 445 posts
    Seen 7 hours ago
    Registered 11 years ago
    @Malek86 This looked promising, but it starts by asking for the ISO, not providing one.
  • Malek86 24 Jan 2017 15:10:28 10,025 posts
    Seen 38 minutes ago
    Registered 13 years ago
    @SilentTristero uh, that's strange. Last time I used it, the tool just connected to the server by itself and downloaded the ISO it needed.

    This might help then. I don't know the site itself, but HowToGeek suggest it, so I guess it won't be a scam.
  • oceanmotion 29 Jan 2017 15:55:09 17,358 posts
    Seen 1 year ago
    Registered 17 years ago
    Quick question, are the really cheap eBay Windows 7 scrap PC keys a load of bollocks that will deactivate after a few months or probably just hacked keys that Microsoft haven't got around to banning yet?

    ebay listing

    Edited by oceanmotion at 15:56:03 29-01-2017

    Edited by oceanmotion at 20:02:04 29-01-2017
  • MMMarmite 29 Jan 2017 19:30:32 1,616 posts
    Seen 1 day ago
    Registered 13 years ago
    @oceanmotion they're usually keys stripped from dead/scrapped machines. If you read the Eula you aren't supposed to sell them or use them on any other machine.

    It's a gamble as to whether it'll work or not, you may have to go through the phone activation system, and I doubt Microsoft will offer much help if that doesn't work.
  • oceanmotion 29 Jan 2017 20:01:02 17,358 posts
    Seen 1 year ago
    Registered 17 years ago
    @MMMarmite thanks, I wasn't sure, there is a stupid amount of cheap listings, even Office. You would think eBay and Microsoft wouldn't let people sell them. Shouldn't they clamp down on all those sellers?

    I was looking for a cheap quick fix for my Mum's Vista, yes Vista computer which seems to have met it's end of life support from Microsoft. Give it some last legs with Windows 7 support, works well enough.
  • Zeffi 29 Jan 2017 21:57:50 1,021 posts
    Seen 8 hours ago
    Registered 6 years ago
    You can get a Windows 10 key on Amazon for 20.

    You get the key and download the ISO to a USB key. It's stupid easy.
  • ghostgate2001 30 Jan 2017 08:12:58 674 posts
    Seen 4 hours ago
    Registered 14 years ago
    If I recall correctly, all you need to do is create or download from MS a Win 7 recovery / system repair disc image (burn to disc or copy to USB) and you can use that to install Win 7 using your key. You might need to "unregister" your current install to free up the key, requiring a quick phone call to a Microsoft number that escapes me right now.

    Create a system repair disc

    Apologies if any of that info is outdated / superceded. Admittedly, the last time I did this was quite a few years ago with a PC that had an OEM copy of Vista installed (!) but it looks like it works the same way with Win 7 if you're sticking with the OS you already own.
Log in or register to reply

Sometimes posts may contain links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. For more information, go here.