I have an OEM Windows 7 Home Premium cd key and a Windows 7 Ultimate Retail Install disk. What procedure would I have to do to install home premium with my cd key? Do I need to edit ei.cfg?

up vote 7 down vote accepted

You will need to either edit the ei.cfg and replace Ultimate with HomePremium, or delete the file entirely.

http://windows7center.com/news/how-to-install-any-version-or-sku-of-windows-7/ gives a more detailed step-by-step process of doing so:

  1. Open the disk image in 7-Zip
  2. Delete or edit sources/ei.cfg:
    • Delete to have the option select the SKU you want during install, or
    • Change the EditionID value to be the SKU that you want:
      • Ultimate
      • Premium
      • HomePremium
      • HomeBasic
      • Starter
  3. Save the image and burn it to disk
  • 1
    When I delete the ei.cfg completely, does it default the channel to Retail or OEM? – keyoh Jun 13 '10 at 1:08
  • 1
    I missed that portion of your question - deleting the file entirely will allow you to select the SKU (Starter, Basic, Home Premium, Professional, Ultimate), though nothing is mentioned about Retail or OEM - I'm under the impression that the only difference between Retail / OEM keys are that the OEM motherboards often have them embedded so no activation is needed at all, but the key is otherwise a valid key for windows. I know for XP, the keys you got with the OEM systems worked fine with retail install disks, and I'd expect Windows 7 to be the same. – Darth Android Jun 13 '10 at 2:53
  • The key didn't work, so I had to do a phone activation. – keyoh Jun 13 '10 at 18:21
  • If a delete ei.cfg will I be able to activate Ultimate version with key from Home Premium? – Giorgi Jul 22 '10 at 20:01
  • The article you linked to has gone dead. Can you summarize the process? – Brant Bobby Nov 27 '12 at 1:51

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