Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Definitive answers re: install using oem disc

  1. #11


    Newport, South Wales, UK
    Posts : 545
    Windows 10 Pro x64 x2 Windows 10 Enterprise x64, Ubuntu


    You can use any Microsoft sourced disk to install windows with any valid key

    This would include both OEM and Retail disks & keys. in this case OEM disk is the one that is made for use by small system Builders.

    You cannot use Dell, HP, Acer Etc disc other than on the hardware they are provided with as these are of a form for use only by Major OEM Manufacturers, they are these days located in a partition hidden on the hard disk. if supplied at all they are usually as Restore or recovery disks that include the required hardware drivers and also contain the bloat-ware that is a part of the out of box experience, Pre Windows 8x they also contained the codes to activate the OS but this is now controlled by the TPM module Trusted Platform Module that needs the install disk to be correct / genuine during install

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #12


    Posts : 14
    Windows 8.1


    OK. I "think" I'm getting this. I'm not very intuitive. The para where you say "you can" you mean if it works it's leagal.

    The para where you say "you cannot" it sounds more to do with sheer prevention on or relevance to the new machine than legality.

    Is this kind of stuff all anecdotal apart from reading every manufacturers t&c and all of Microsoft t&c or has any one written an abridged compilation of this kind of stuff anywhere?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #13


    Newport, South Wales, UK
    Posts : 545
    Windows 10 Pro x64 x2 Windows 10 Enterprise x64, Ubuntu


    What is possible and what is legal are often very different

    I have seen a totally illegal install work - for a while - Microsoft is continuously updating it's detection methods and monitoring the situation - I've seen users stating that their hacked install has suddenly stopped working after a time when it showed activated, nothing had changed, apart from Microsoft's methodology

    The restore disks are not windows install disks at all, so yes there is a preventative methodology involved.

    The actual OEM and Retail marked "Microsoft Disks" are the same The Key on the Major OEM COA (bottom of laptop), will normally work with a clean install of a Retail Disk

    The basic reality is that if Microsoft's records show a retail Key to be genuine, correct for the version of windows installed and "Not Currently In Use" then the key and thus the install is legal.

    for an OEM key the "Not Currently In Use" becomes "Never Used"

    If there is any ambiguity then the user will be asked to contact Microsoft by phone and often even in the case where the strict ruling would not be met, the key will be approved ( EG a motherboard failure a few moths after install)

    By The Way, support for OEM versions of windows is the responsibility of the supplier, not Microsoft who just control licensing
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #14


    Posts : 14
    Windows 8.1


    I DO realise works is not the same as is legal.

    OK. I think we are at cross purposes re the first paragraphs of the last 3 posts.

    Regarding reviewed source, basically it's a black art with no reviewed source guidance and tons of third party anecdotal. And plenty of misunderstanding in every communication.

    Time for me to just give up I think.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #15


    Posts : 14
    Windows 8.1


    You didn't define "can" in your earlier post.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #16


    Posts : 14
    Windows 8.1


    What does "use" or "used" mean. I'm not being pedantic I'm just trying to understand. So if the oem win install pkg was on the major manufactures hdd and my HDD is trashed and I have no backups and I download win 8.1 from Microsoft, and iinstall it on new drive and the product key in the Mb is not "never used" then it's not legal. So what do I do?

    Also the pk was for a different ver say 8.0 so legal test fails. But I read anecdotally (who knows) that 8.0 keys support 8.1 for activation but not for install.

    But if a Microsoft electronic response of activation success cannot be trusted, as you suggest, then how are we to ever know if what we are doing is legal.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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