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  1. I was wondering if the recovery disk of one laptop be used on another laptop?
  2. So generally, when we buy a new laptop, are we supposed to get a OS installation disk? Or just a recovery disk?

PS: my laptop is Lenovo T400 with Windows 7.

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Often manufacturer supplied recovery disks will check the make and model of the machine you try and run them on. If they're not right, they won't work.

I wish you always got an OS Installation disk but that's not the case anymore. I've bought hardware and been given a restore disk, or even instructions on how to burn my own disk with their software...

If you have two Lenovo T400s then yes, the recovery disk will 'probably' work with both of them.

I wouldn't suggest trying recovery disks if they aren't for the same laptop, however they were made.

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I depends - I have a Lenovo L512 laptop and needed to replace the hard disk in a Lenovo W500 at work but could not find its original installation CDs. I reinstalled Windows 7 using my L512-branded recovery disk without any problems.

On the flip-site, I once tried to re-setup a Dell server using an HP-branded copy of Windows 2003 and it flatly refused to install.

Whether you get recovery disks with a PC or laptop is hit-and-miss too - more and more manufacturers seem to want you to burn your own.

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There is no one answer fits all.

The Windows licence as an end user, grants you the ability to run that edition of Windows. As long as you are going to install the same version, you will not be breaking the rules directly.

However, in addition, as a system builder, you are only allowed to use the media shipped with the licence, whilst I do not know anyone who has been sued/fined, it is a grey area. (Technically, MS are no worse off from you doing this).

The big companies are typically BIOS locked, so you can (typically) use any Lenovo disk with any Lenovo laptop and just skip over activation. If the disk is from another manufacturer, you can try using it, it will most likely fail automatic activation, and you have a small chance that it will work by typing the code manually (sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't), the only downside is the machine may be "branded" if there are OEM customisations on the setup disk.

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