I've read that windows 10 writes it's registration/configuration information into the bios (or was it cmos...) of your motherboard to close the loop of using the same product key as both a dual boot system and a virtual box installation.
I originally installed windows 10 from the upgrade offer and used it as a dual boot (not a virtual box). I gave it a shot for a few months, but by the time I decided it wasn't really good enough to be my full time OS I couldn't revert back to windows 7. These days, the computer I tested it out on only runs arch linux. I got rid of the dual boot, formatted over my windows partitions, and haven't looked back. Well, maybe a few glances, every once and a while I need windows again to run software that is for windows only and making arrangements for this is getting inconvenient.
Since I have a valid windows 10 product key I'm thinking of setting it up as a virtual box, but I know there will be problems with the registration because that computer already has this product key of windows 10 embedded into it somehow.
What do I need to do to my bios or cmos to wipe out this information so I can start clean?
This is not a laptop or desktop purchased from a store with an OEM license affixed as a sticker to it.
My motherboard is a
Under Additional Terms / License Rights and Multi User Scenarios in the answer: https://superuser.com/a/546688/409815 I can see that you can only use one copy of your product number for a stand alone system or a virtual system, but not both.
This isn't my original resource for determining that windows 10 wrote product key information to the bios, but at least there are multiple confirmations that this process is a current practice: https://superuser.com/a/1096027/409815
There's a lot of conflicting information about this one out there so I won't reference this one: There's dispute about whether problems can arise from returning to windows 7 from windows 10 outside of the 1 month grace period following a free upgrade to windows 10.
Conclusions I have drawn about my system:
- Having installed windows 10 on my computer (once as an upgrade, and a second time with my new windows 10 product key from the upgrade as a clean install) I am quite sure that my bios now contains some sort of registration.
- I won't have any problems reinstalling a standalone version of windows 10 to my computer because the hardware configurations are the same and it will agree with the information stored in the bios.
- I expect to have problems, or at the very least trigger some flags with MS if I try to install windows 10 in a virtual box on a computer that already has registration info in it's bios.
- Maybe if I had found some way to properly uninstall this wouldn't be an issue, but I just formatted over the install while playing with my partition table one day.