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Upgrading a hard drive to Windows 7 Pro

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#1 Hum

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 13:54

I'm putting a new Western Digital 7200 rpm hard drive in my Asus laptop, to replace the slower 5400 drive.

The older drive has Win 7 Premium on it.

I bought a 'Dell' branded OEM version of Win 7 Pro, which I want to install on the new, blank hard drive.

I do not see any sort of Product Key with this Dell dvd.

The websites claim that these 'branded' Windows version can be installed on any computer.

Can I use my previous Key, or do I need to call Microsoft, or ... ?

(Yes, I should probably leave a healthy, working computer alone. ;) )


Any help is appreciated.


#2 francescob

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 14:02

Can't you create a backup on an external drive and restore it on the new drive?

#3 sc302

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 14:03

It can be installed on any computer, provided you have a OEM key to go with it. Otherwise, it would have to be a newer dell system for the install to auto activate (one that would have been release after windows 7 was released to OEM's, basically one that has been coded for the windows install to release a code to). If yours has/had a XP or Vista sticker on it, it probably won't be able to auto activate.

You can try it and see what happens (no harm there), but if it auto activates and it isn't a dell computer (using a dell os install on a non dell computer) then it is not a genuine dell install image. If it auto activates on any system other than a dell it is not a genuine install image.

#4 OP Hum

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 14:08

Looking over the files on the Dell dvd, I don't see anything identifying it as Dell branded.

My Asus laptop came with a 'refurbished' sticker with a newer Product Key, Win 7 Premium.

This OEM says to use that Key after Install.

There won't be any great harm in trying -- I'm saving the Premium drive, as is, in case of whatever.

And I can always zero out the new WD and start again.

#5 lars77

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 14:38

You're saying you bought a Dell branded, then you're saying you don't have a Dell branded..? Dell branded discs do have Dell's logo on them so they're usually pretty obvious.

Assuming you have a Dell OEM disc there, by default the Dell disc will install an un-activated OEM copy of Win 7 Pro, which would expire in 3 days (I think). Your Asus laptop has a OEM key for Win 7 Home Premium so it would not work with a Win 7 Pro install.. not sure why the person you bought it from would say otherwise?

The Dell disc does not need a key or activation if used on a Dell machine.

The correct way to go about it:
A. Get a generic retail or OEM Win 7 disc, install Win 7 Home Premium on it, then enter the Home Premium key from your Asus laptop.
B. Buy a copy of Win 7 Pro w/ key (either retail or generic OEM would work fine) & install that
or
C. Maybe buy a Win 7 Pro upgrade to install on top of your Win 7 Home Premium

You might also accomplish A by changing your current Win 7 OEM disc to one that can install all Win 7 versions (by removing the ei.cfg file, e.g. like this). That would work fine as long as your goal is just to re-install Win 7 Home Premium. I can't remember if Dell makes any changes to their OEM discs to remove the other Win 7 versions, but could be worth a try.

#6 sc302

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 14:43

btw, scroll down to about the center of the page and you will find the US/English iso's. They are clean, I have used these in the past. No need to purchase anything as long as you have a legit oem key that has never been activated or has been activated previously on the same hardware you are installing on.

http://www.heidoc.ne...-download-links

#7 xendrome

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 14:48

Doubt that OEM disc is going to work, as it's going to look for a Dell BIOS, not see it, and fail activation.

Why not just image the existing load to the new drive?

#8 OP Hum

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 15:06

^ Trying to move from Premium to Professional -- and a faster drive.

And laptop is Asus -- dvd is Dell branded.

Well, we are going to find out .... New drive in, OEM is installing Windows 7 Pro ...


This is fun to watch. :p

#9 +Bryan R.

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 16:25

As far as I know, OEM licensing is tied to specific hardware. If your Asus product key on the laptop works with that disc, then it's fine, otherwise, it's not legitimate, even if it does activate automatically from being a custom Dell disc.

#10 YouWhat

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 16:33

It wont activate, I can be certain with that, it looks in the bios for a dell string to auto-activate, but as your laptop isn't dell, it wont find it. It will ask you for a key to use.

#11 +Bryan R.

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 16:37

It wont activate, I can be certain with that, it looks in the bios for a dell string to auto-activate, but as your laptop isn't dell, it wont find it. It will ask you for a key to use.

There are ways to trick Windows into finding this information. Not sure if that's where Hum is going to go next, but it's against the rules. Just heading that off ;)

#12 Ned

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 17:08

...what websites claim?

Where did you get the disk from?

#13 c.grz

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 17:31

Key Cert Branding Tool is what I use to recreate the OEM activation when I re-install Windows 7 on an OEM PC.

Tool works as long as the BIOS is SLIC 2.1 enabled.

#14 OP Hum

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 17:36

I am stuck, due to the Network Controller driver not being installed.

None of the drivers from Asus Support seem to work.

Can not connect to the internet.

Is there any generic I can use ... ?

#15 c.grz

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 17:40

Go directly to the vendor to get the NIC drivers.