Fixing a laptop for a friend, acer aspire 5349, booting into safe mode failed...BSOD


Googled and toms hardware replies seem to suggest bad RAM. Oddly though I managed to boot into Linuxmint and connect to a Windows share to backup files/photos.

I performed a eRecovery (a few times) and it gets about 10% and fails. I am not entirely convinced it's bad RAM so much as corrupt windows recovery and main install.

I am running the computer through a few iterations of memtest86...so far no errors

If the recovery partition is fubar'ed...and so is the main install...can I use a copy of Windows 7 do a full install and use her license key or are OEM keys bound to specific Windows copies/hardware? I know I can't use her licence to install windows 7 on my desktop but what about the reverse???

Recovery-disk.com sounds sketchy and I am curious as to why anyone would ever buy that -- how can I restore this laptop???

Regards, Alex


Windows product keys given to OEMs are written into the machine BIOS via SLP (System Locked Preinstallation), so if you install Windows using the same SKU (version, edition and x86/x64 type) and type in her computer's key it should activate.

If the OEMs recovery software does not work but a normal Windows installation does and at the same time rigorous hardware testing does not turn up problems I would suspect that something corrupted both partitions of the hard disk (Windows and eRecovery) and Windows should just be reinstalled and the programs and data restored. Since it sounds like you have backed up the data on the drive, this is what I would do if I had to fix it.

  • OK that is what I figured but how do I go about obtaining a copy of Windows like that. Acer wants 20 bucks to buy a recover CD which IMO they should provide anyway :p I hate when businesses do this, such a shady practice. We actually have acer at work I can maybe create a recovery disk from a working system and try that on hers, then download/install any missing drivers for her specific hardware??? – Alex.Barylski Nov 4 '13 at 16:30
  • You cannot do that (make the recovery disk at work) using the OEM tools (Acer) unless the machines are identical models, otherwise the proprietary restore tool will almost certainly detect the difference and refuse to install. For getting a copy of Windows, you might ask if they have a copy with the same SKU to use - making sure they do not give you a product key - and install it with the OEM key on the laptop. I believe that by so doing you will not violate the MSLT/EULA. – K.A.Monica Nov 5 '13 at 2:01
  • So I basically have to find someone with an identical model or pay Acer 20 bucks for something which I should already have? baaah...no wonder their going out of business :p – Alex.Barylski Nov 5 '13 at 16:34
  • one last question :) I found this article: mydigitallife.info/… I know her Acer Aspire was running windows home prem (64 I think)...could I not use my 7 ultimate disc and following these instructions and install that on her laptop then use her key? I think this is what you said I could do but I am not fully understanding. – Alex.Barylski Nov 5 '13 at 16:51
  • I recall trying to use my copy of Windows 98 on an eMachine on a desktop other than my eMachine and that not working, this is the reverse of that, but are there issues? – Alex.Barylski Nov 5 '13 at 17:03

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