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How do I find my Windows CD Key and install on new HD

gerico

New Member
Hi there,

This is a question in related to a work machine. It's a rather dodgy Advent PC. We were never supplied with a windows disk and I've got a new SSD in there that I want to get Windows on. We have other Windows disk about so I can install fine, but I need to find the CD key.

I have used some software which claims my key is X and I've then tried to boot from CD and install using the key the software gave me but it got rejected. Which I assume must mean it's not found the correct key? The software I tried is called Belarc Advisor.

Help appreciated.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    i7 4790K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte z97 SOC Force
    Memory
    8GB DDR3 Corsair Dominator
    Graphics Card(s)
    2x AMD R9 290
    Browser
    Firefox dev Edition

Brink

Administrator
Administrator
mvp
Hello Gerico, and welcome to Eight Forums. :)

If the PC came with Windows 8 preinstalled, then the product key will be embedded in the UEFI firmware chip on the motherboard. When you install the same edition of Windows on the PC, it should auto detect the key from UEFI and activate with it.

If you have not already, you can use OPTION ONE in the tutorial below to download an official 8.1 ISO file that you can create a USB with to install Windows 8.1 on the PC that will be able to activate with the embedded key.

http://www.eightforums.com/tutorials/18309-windows-8-windows-8-1-iso-download-create.html

Option Six in the tutorial below can show you what your product key is from the UEFI firmware.

http://www.eightforums.com/tutorials/27129-product-key-find-windows-8-a.html
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    64-bit Windows 10
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self built
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K OC'd to 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G7 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus M.2,
    250GB Samsung 960 EVO M.2,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    OCZ Series Gold OCZZ1000M 1000W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gb/s Download and 35 Mb/s Upload
    Browser
    Internet Explorer 11
    Antivirus
    Malwarebyte Anti-Malware Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    Linksys EA9500 router,
    Arris SB8200 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Lumia 1520 phone

gerico

New Member
Hi Brink,

Thanks for the welcome and for answering my question.

The product key I originally found does seem to be the right thing, as all the programs I've tried show me the same and its definitely right. I did look at the link for creating the ISO but the Microsoft site doesn't work when you try download it.

I found this link: http://www.eightforums.com/tutorials/2299-clean-install-windows-8-a.html which by the looks of things suggests that if the windows copy is OEM, and I want a clean install, then I need to install on the new drive - enter the suggested generic key, and then once installed, I should be able to enter this existing key?

I'm just worried that it might get rejected again - then I'd be stuck. Is the key being rejected because the disk I'm using to try install windows on the new drive might be a different version of 8 than this disk?
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 8.1
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    i7 4790K
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte z97 SOC Force
    Memory
    8GB DDR3 Corsair Dominator
    Graphics Card(s)
    2x AMD R9 290
    Browser
    Firefox dev Edition

Brink

Administrator
Administrator
mvp
If you are able to download and use the ISO from OPTION ONE, you won't need to enter a generic key first. It'll be activated by the key in your UEFI firmware chip.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    64-bit Windows 10
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self built
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K OC'd to 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G7 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus M.2,
    250GB Samsung 960 EVO M.2,
    6TB WD Black WD6001FZWX
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    OCZ Series Gold OCZZ1000M 1000W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gb/s Download and 35 Mb/s Upload
    Browser
    Internet Explorer 11
    Antivirus
    Malwarebyte Anti-Malware Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    Linksys EA9500 router,
    Arris SB8200 cable modem,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Lumia 1520 phone

CountryBumkin

Gv me thumbs-up if I help
Power User
On a home built computer with UEFI, will the Windows install key "embed" itself into the UEFI (firmware chip) so I don't need to keep track of the key number when/if I do a clean re-install with the same version?
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Win8.1
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    HTPC: Custom built
    CPU
    intel i5-2400
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte GA-Z68MX-DS2H
    Memory
    16GB Corsair DDR3-1600
    Graphics Card(s)
    on-board HD3000
    Sound Card
    On-board
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung 32" LED
    Hard Drives
    eight HGTS Deskstar NAS, 3TB
    seven WD Red NAS, 3TB
    one Seagate ES.2, 1TB
    one 64GB SSD
    PSU
    Corsair 750W
    Case
    Li-Lian case with SuperMicro hotswap backplane
    Cooling
    Case 4 6" fans, stock CPU cooler
    Other Info
    Two 3-Ware (LSI) model 9650SE-8LPML RAID cards.

Ztruker

Well-Known Member
VIP Member
Guru
I did look at the link for creating the ISO but the Microsoft site doesn't work when you try download it.

The site was down for a while, maybe updating the images to include latest updates. Working now as I'm now in the process of downloading.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10 Pro X64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    System Manufacturer/Model
    Lenovo IdeaCenter K450
    CPU
    Intel Quad Core i7-4770 @ 3.4Ghz
    Motherboard
    Lenovo
    Memory
    16.0GB PC3-12800 DDR3 SDRAM 1600 MHz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Intel Integrated HD Graphics
    Sound Card
    Realtek HD Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP h2207
    Screen Resolution
    1680x1050@59Hz
    Hard Drives
    250GB Samsung EVO SATA-3 SSD;
    2TB Seagate ST2000DM001 SATA-2;
    1.5TB Seagate ST3150041AS SATA
    PSU
    500W
    Keyboard
    Wired USB
    Mouse
    Wired USB
    Internet Speed
    3GB Up, 30GB Down
    Browser
    SeaMonkey
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender; MBAM Pro
    Other Info
    UEFI/GPT
    PLDS DVD-RW DH16AERSH

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