Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Windows says my Key is in use on another PC

  1. #11


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Quote Originally Posted by Michaelvas17 View Post
    I did have it installed on another computer but, it was uninstalled. Do I wait to see If the system needs to gather information or do I need to reinstall? Btw, this is NOT the Inspirion 14z 2013.
    I have seen reference to the message you get on this forum only once before. In that case, it appears that the one having the problem had unknowingly purchased a non-genuine copy of Win8, and the product key received apparently had been provided to at least one other in a prior sale. It was clear that the software acquired was not genuine because it gave an option not available on a genuine disc. I can't remember the option for sure. But, it either gave the option of installing 32 bit or 64 bit or the option of installing core or Pro.

    I am not saying that's what happened to you. But, the existence of this situation lends credibility to the idea that you will have to activate via phone--one way or another. You could try the refresh procedure in Clean Install with Windows 8 Upgrade, but, under the circumstances, there is not much assurance that it will work.

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  2. #12


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Quote Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Michaelvas17 View Post
    But why? I doesn't need to be. It isn't in use
    There is no explicit de-activation. The activation servers only have the information that the key was used.

    You'll have to activate by phone. The first level is automated. If that fails, you ought to be referred to a human. Even then, the whole process should take less than ten minutes.
    Do you know for a fact that MS knows that the same key has been used on another computer? Not doubting you; just tossing the idea around.
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  3. #13


    Quote Originally Posted by znod View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bobkn View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Michaelvas17 View Post
    But why? I doesn't need to be. It isn't in use
    There is no explicit de-activation. The activation servers only have the information that the key was used.

    You'll have to activate by phone. The first level is automated. If that fails, you ought to be referred to a human. Even then, the whole process should take less than ten minutes.
    Do you know for a fact that MS knows that the same key has been used on another computer? Not doubting you; just tossing the idea around.
    MS only knows when the computer is validated (such as Windows Update or any other Genuine Microsoft Software Downloads).
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  4. #14


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Quote Originally Posted by MrShowdown View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by znod View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bobkn View Post

    There is no explicit de-activation. The activation servers only have the information that the key was used.

    You'll have to activate by phone. The first level is automated. If that fails, you ought to be referred to a human. Even then, the whole process should take less than ten minutes.
    Do you know for a fact that MS knows that the same key has been used on another computer? Not doubting you; just tossing the idea around.
    MS only knows when the computer is validated (such as Windows Update or any other Genuine Microsoft Software Downloads).
    Thanks. Do you mean that MS knows which specific computer is in use when activation occurs? Validated? Are you saying MS doesn't know when an attempt is made to use a key on a second computer for activation--where activation was successful on the first computer?
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  5. #15


    Microsoft has a hardware hash of the system the key was activated on. If that changes, you need to call the automated number to get activated.

    We bought some computers at work, and I installed an 8 pro pack on one of them. The computer was later returned. When I tried to use the pro pack key again, I got the same message that the key was already used. 1 call to Microsoft and the issue was resolved.
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  6. #16


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Thanks much--again. No substitute for personal experience--by a highly qualified observer.
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  7. #17


    Posts : 30
    Windows 8.1 Update 1


    Quote Originally Posted by pparks1 View Post
    Microsoft has a hardware hash of the system the key was activated on. If that changes, you need to call the automated number to get activated.

    We bought some computers at work, and I installed an 8 pro pack on one of them. The computer was later returned. When I tried to use the pro pack key again, I got the same message that the key was already used. 1 call to Microsoft and the issue was resolved.
    Before I call up, Do I have to pay? and is the call automated? And BTW, thanks to pparks1 and znod for your words of wisdom.
    Last edited by Michaelvas17; 26 Mar 2013 at 16:01.
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  8. #18


    you don't pay, it's a free call. It's an automated system. You will have to give them a code from your machine which will be a collection of 9 sections (a-b-c-d-e-f-g-h-i) which consist of 6 digits each. Once you give them this number, they will give you a number in return. You enter the key, click on Activate and it should just work.
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  9. #19


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Quote Originally Posted by Michaelvas17 View Post
    And BTW, thanks to pparks1 and znod for your words of wisdom.
    You are very welcome.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Windows says my Key is in use on another PC
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