Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Reloading windows 8 or 8.1 with a failed Hard Drive

  1. #1


    Posts : 3
    windows 8.1 pro

    Reloading windows 8 or 8.1 with a failed Hard Drive


    Hello all
    We are a computer repair shop, we seem to be having the same issue other shops and or people are having, Reloading windows 8 or 8.1 on a system that the product key is embedded in the Bios. We have research this problem and a lot of the time, the answer is completely wrong or off topic.

    Scenario only concerning windows 8 or 8.1 any version, also data recover is not a concern: Systems are coming in that are built by a manufacturer (Dell, Toshiba, HP, Compaq, Emachine ect.) the system(s) are out of warranty, They are either in a boot loop, blue screening when loading windows or the hard drive has crashed and isn't loading windows at all. The customers never created recovery disks, nor can we due to windows not loading. We can not get to advanced mode and even if and when we can, creating recovery media is not available.

    So let us be clear: We have a system that had windows 8 or 8.1 preinstalled by manufacturer, it was used for multiple months, no recovery media create, now the operating system is not loading, recovery partition corrupt or not accessible, refresh not available, windows product key is embedded in the Bios and is out of warranty.

    What we have tried: System with failed hard drive with windows 8 sticker on it. Ran software that extracts product key from BIOS, Inserted an OEM disk for windows 8 and 8.1 when asked to input key, we used the key that was extracted, the installation tells us that the product key is not a OEM key. We do not have a skip button to continue? How in the world can we reload windows 8 or 8.1 on these systems? We have gone through all of the BIOS settings and have tried everything we can think of. If the product key for windows 8 or 8.1 is embedded in the BIOS what do we need to do to make the installation find the key and use it to continue the installation and activate.

    From what we are seeing we are not the only one(s) asking this question, the problem is that the reply(s) are: use system refresh, use recovery partition, use recovery media? We understand the reasoning behind having the product key embedded but it shouldn't be this hard to use what the system already has?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated, Thank You

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Posts : 879
    Windows 10


    edit:

    How to clean install Windows 8.1 if you have an OEM computer with UEFI firmware (BIOS) embedded Windows 8/8.1 product key? -> link
    Last edited by genet; 08 Nov 2014 at 18:22.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 77
    Win 8.1 Pro x64


    What did you use to read the product key? For example, speccy doesn't calculate the key correctly.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Posts : 3
    windows 8.1 pro


    We know we can use a windows 8.1 key for windows 8. We multiple key extractors, back to original question, how to get windows 8 or 8.1 to use the product key that is embedded in the bios when reinstalling the windows 8 or 8.1.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Posts : 3
    windows 8.1 pro


    Does any one else see the issue here? These systems are supplied with windows 8 or 8.1. the hard drive fails and now can't used operating system they came with?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 879
    Windows 10


    Quote Originally Posted by cpucomputers View Post
    how to get windows 8 or 8.1 to use the product key that is embedded in the bios when reinstalling the windows 8 or 8.1.
    Perhaps you don't have the correct installation media?

    edit:

    How to clean install Windows 8.1 if you have an OEM computer with UEFI firmware (BIOS) embedded Windows 8/8.1 product key? -> link
    Last edited by genet; 08 Nov 2014 at 18:24.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Quote Originally Posted by cpucomputers View Post
    Does any one else see the issue here? These systems are supplied with windows 8 or 8.1. the hard drive fails and now can't used operating system they came with?
    Yes this is a quite common problem everyone has the same issue, after extracting the embedded key. You'll need a 8.1 ISO or DVD for the version that is on the computer Core or Pro. Goggle for the current Install Key for the version you are installing. These Generic keys will not activate. So once you get booted up go to Control Panel\System and Security\System bottom left corner you'll see a link to Change Product Key put in your embedded 8 key, if the embedded is an 8.1 it should automatically find the key and activate.
    These are old keys I don't know if they are still working or not Remember these are install only keys they will not activate
    Windows 8.1 Single Language Y9NXP-XT8MV-PT9TG-97CT3-9D6TC
    Windows 8.1 Core 334NH-RXG76-64THK-C7CKG-D3VPT
    Windows 8.1 Pro XHQ8N-C3MCJ-RQXB6-WCHYG-C9WKB
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Posts : 4
    Windows 8.1

    Same problem


    So has anyone found a resolution to this problem? I am an independent computer tech and have this exact issue with a Windows 8 machine where the OS was preloaded and the hd failed completely. I can't reinstall 8 and can't even install 7 at this point. Help!! Have called Microsoft and they were useless as expected.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Posts : 2,690
    Windows 3.1 > Windows 10


    Create installation media for Windows 8.1 - Windows Help

    installs windows 8.1 using the embedded oem key

    Windows 8 oem keys are now accepted for windows 8.1 installations
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Posts : 4
    Windows 8.1


    Thank you. I'll give this a try.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Reloading windows 8 or 8.1 with a failed Hard Drive
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