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The product key on the sticker supplied by the manufacturer is for Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit. Would a fresh installation if the Windows 7 Home Premium installation supplied not from the manufacturer but from Microsoft be activated if the key is provided from the manufacturer?

  • To clarify; are you asking if the OEM-key on the bottom of the laptop will activate a retail installation? If so, then no, as Molly says. Why can't you use the key included in the retail copy? ("from Microsoft")? – RJFalconer Dec 29 '09 at 0:43
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    now that's anyone's guess :) – Molly7244 Dec 29 '09 at 1:17
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Would a fresh installation if the Windows 7 Home Premium installation supplied not from the manufacturer but from Microsoft be activated if the key is provided from the manufacturer?

in a word, no

from Microsoft you will get retail and volume license builds, these cannot be activated with an OEM license.

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This really depends.

Windows serial keys have come a long way since Windows XP where it was highly restricted.

I can confirm that the following will work with inputting a plain off the shelf OEM key. However, I am not 100% sure if it will work with a key from a large OEM (HP, Dell etc.)

All Windows 7 disks (any edition) are pretty much the same with a single file that locks it to the version which the disk says.

If you download the Windows Automated Installation Kit, you can build an answers file with your serial key inside it, You can put this on a USB stick and put it in before Windows PE (the installation environment) has loaded.

The settings on the USB stick will overwrite any other settings files, and you should be able to install any version, however, if you have an OEM key, you will only be able to activate if performing a fresh/full installation.

  • Microsoft is extremely touchy when it comes to Product Activation, you tamper with that stuff and you may end up with a 'stained' license and find yourself answering to some serious questions if you want to rectify the issue with a Microsoft representative. – Molly7244 Dec 29 '09 at 1:16
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Update: Maybe I have not made my question clear, but I used the sticker provided by my manufacturer Lenovo as the product key. It initiated me to do to the phone activation, and I twice confirmed that through that phone activation, windows 7 indeed activated into a genuine product.

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