My company bought a new machine for me, it's a Toshiba Satellite L855-149 i7-3630QM 12GB/750/DVD-RW/Win8.

They also bough a SSD drive and I'm suppose to replace the HDD with it. After searching the internet for some information on how to actually do it, it appears to be more difficult than it sounds.

The laptop doesn't come with any CD or DVD containing OS or drivers (but that's nothing new), but it also doesn't come with a key for Windows 8. Well, the key is there in the BIOS, but I have no way to access it.

Currently the only way to install Windows 8 on this machine is from the recovery partition, but I won't have access to it once I plug in the SSD.

I searched the internet for legit download of Windows 8, but the one from Microsoft that I found requires me to provide product key, which I have no access to (I also read that it tends not to work with the OEM keys, since it's intended for upgrade and I need to run the site on the vary machine I want to install Windows on).

I'm reluctant to get the copy from less legit sources, because they're very likely not to be clean (spyware, crapware, keyloggers etc.) and even if I did manage find a clean one, odds are I would have to provide the key...

The only solution for now that I can think of (that can be achieved in a reasonable time*) is to install the OS on the HDD, make recovery discs (I hope I still have some spare DVDs left) and try using them after switching to SSD.

Anyone got any alternative suggestions? Anyone tried moving recovery partition to a new drive?

*Installing the OS is something I was planning to do today and maybe spend some time over this weekend and trying to get help through the official channel would simply take too much time (waiting for a DVD with the OS and making my company pay for it).

  • Toshiba can provide your company with the required media. There is no other way to download Windows 8 unless you have an upgrade license ( you don't ) or access to MSDN ( sounds like you don't ). The alternative is to clone the current ssd to the hdd. – Ramhound Jan 3 '14 at 12:37
  • Thanks for the information. I actually need to move the data from HDD to SSD though. – jahu Jan 3 '14 at 12:45
  • The detail is not that important. Just verify the size of the clone partition is equal or smaller to the ssd otherwise you will run into problems. – Ramhound Jan 3 '14 at 12:50
  • Cloning will make an exact duplicate, data and partition wise of your HDD. OS and data will all be transferred. You will need a USB to SATA adapter to do this. – Jack Jan 3 '14 at 13:18
  • Unfortunately I don't have one right now. I'm trying my luck with making the recovery disks which for some reason is taking ridiculous amount of time. – jahu Jan 3 '14 at 14:12

On OEM machines, you do not need to supply a number to install Windows 8 - it is embedded in the hardware and the install process will pull it from there.

I don't believe they have a specific OEM version of Windows 8 now, just install from the disk and it should detect if you have the COA embedded or not. And there's no issue of legality here, for Windows 8 the license is still valid.


Ok, so I went with making the recovery disks and it worked. It took a lot of time (for some reason) to burn those 3 DVDs and recover them and I had to install the OS on the original drive first, but the installation process the second time went really fast.

While this solution seems to have many unnecessary steps, I haven't found a simpler one and at least this one works.

  • how do you make a recovery disk for windows? I'm assuming it's bootable? – Anthony May 29 '14 at 8:00
  • @Anthony The laptop had a preinstalled tool for making the recovery disk (and yes it was bootable). Most laptop producers provide such tools preinstalled. This one just made a copy of the recovery partition. – jahu Aug 3 '14 at 12:56

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