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can i buy or get a copy of windows vista home premium ?

G

geo g

#1
I have bought a comp that has hidden recovery partition , the comp comes with
vista premium activation key .... i have no recovery disks or vista premium
dvd , is it possible to buy a vista premium dvd that does not include an
activation key ( i can then activate with my own key) , or , can i get a copy
of a premium dvd ?

Id like to have the dvd incase my hard drive goes bellyup , i would then
have no way to aceess vista , so having a premium dvd would be welcomed as
backup and piece of mind.

Does anyone know if/where I can buy a dvd without activation key or can i
borrow/get a copy of the dvd from someone?

Many thanks for replies!
 

My Computer

A

Andrew McLaren

#2
This will depend on the manufacturer of your new PC.

When Windows comes installed on a new PC, you are getting what's called an
"OEM Licence" for Windows (OEM == Original Equipment Manufacturer)

Under the terms of the OEM Licence, the manufacturer is not obliged to give
you any physical media (such as a DVD). It costs them money, not just for
the DVD disks, but also packaging, shipping, warehousing, maintemnce,
management etc for all those millions of DVDs. So, many OEMs elect not to
supply any media at all, and just leave you with the hidden partition. This
way they pay less money to Microsoft, so they pass on the "savings" (by way
of, no disk) to you the consumer.

If you are lucky, your OEM will have an optional offer to get Windows on
DVD. This is usually free or at low cost, eg $10 or thereabouts. The details
should be in the documentation which came with your PC. If in doubt, contact
their support line and ask.

If you cannot get physical DVD media for Vista from your OEM, you are out of
luck. You cannot use Retail media, like you buy over the counter, to
re-install OEM Windows - it uses a different set of Product Keys: an OEM
Product Key in a Retail DVD won't work, and vice versa.

Personally I think this practice by the OEMs (not supplying physical media)
stinks - it's a huge inconvenience to the user, to save a few lousy bucks.
But all PC businesses run on incredibly thin margins, they count the cost of
every screw.

Sorry for the bad news,
Andrew
 

My Computer

C
#3
"You cannot use Retail media, like you buy over the counter, to
re-install OEM Windows - it uses a different set of Product Keys: an OEM
Product Key in a Retail DVD won't work, and vice versa."

There is no difference in the DVDs, the key determines what version you
install.

"Andrew McLaren" <andrew@fakeaddress.com> wrote in message
news:7C30783F-F243-45F9-9121-249FAFB04061@microsoft.com...
> This will depend on the manufacturer of your new PC.
>
> When Windows comes installed on a new PC, you are getting what's called an
> "OEM Licence" for Windows (OEM == Original Equipment Manufacturer)
>
> Under the terms of the OEM Licence, the manufacturer is not obliged to
> give you any physical media (such as a DVD). It costs them money, not just
> for the DVD disks, but also packaging, shipping, warehousing, maintemnce,
> management etc for all those millions of DVDs. So, many OEMs elect not to
> supply any media at all, and just leave you with the hidden partition.
> This way they pay less money to Microsoft, so they pass on the "savings"
> (by way of, no disk) to you the consumer.
>
> If you are lucky, your OEM will have an optional offer to get Windows on
> DVD. This is usually free or at low cost, eg $10 or thereabouts. The
> details should be in the documentation which came with your PC. If in
> doubt, contact their support line and ask.
>
> If you cannot get physical DVD media for Vista from your OEM, you are out
> of luck. You cannot use Retail media, like you buy over the counter, to
> re-install OEM Windows - it uses a different set of Product Keys: an OEM
> Product Key in a Retail DVD won't work, and vice versa.
>
> Personally I think this practice by the OEMs (not supplying physical
> media) stinks - it's a huge inconvenience to the user, to save a few lousy
> bucks. But all PC businesses run on incredibly thin margins, they count
> the cost of every screw.
>
> Sorry for the bad news,
> Andrew
>
 

My Computer

R

Richard Urban

#4
First option is to get an install DVD from the computer manufacturer. This
likely can be used with the key you now have. You will have to ask them.

The second option is to just purchase a copy of Vista Premium. It will have
it's own install key. You will be responsible for hunting down any necessary
drivers that are needed by your hardware. These will likely be on the
manufacturers web site.

--


Regards,

Richard Urban
Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User
(For email, remove the obvious from my address)



"geo g" <geog@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:41BC6960-A115-4E5F-82D4-9938F6F64146@microsoft.com...
>I have bought a comp that has hidden recovery partition , the comp comes
>with
> vista premium activation key .... i have no recovery disks or vista
> premium
> dvd , is it possible to buy a vista premium dvd that does not include an
> activation key ( i can then activate with my own key) , or , can i get a
> copy
> of a premium dvd ?
>
> Id like to have the dvd incase my hard drive goes bellyup , i would then
> have no way to aceess vista , so having a premium dvd would be welcomed as
> backup and piece of mind.
>
> Does anyone know if/where I can buy a dvd without activation key or can i
> borrow/get a copy of the dvd from someone?
>
> Many thanks for replies!
 

My Computer

D
#5
"geo g" <geog@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:41BC6960-A115-4E5F-82D4-9938F6F64146@microsoft.com...
>I have bought a comp that has hidden recovery partition , the comp comes
>with
> vista premium activation key .... i have no recovery disks or vista
> premium
> dvd , is it possible to buy a vista premium dvd that does not include an
> activation key ( i can then activate with my own key) , or , can i get a
> copy
> of a premium dvd ?
>
> Id like to have the dvd incase my hard drive goes bellyup , i would then
> have no way to aceess vista , so having a premium dvd would be welcomed as
> backup and piece of mind.
>
> Does anyone know if/where I can buy a dvd without activation key or can i
> borrow/get a copy of the dvd from someone?
>
> Many thanks for replies!


While your computer is young and semi clean... do an image backup.
 

My Computer

M

Mike Brannigan

#6
"geo g" <geog@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:41BC6960-A115-4E5F-82D4-9938F6F64146@microsoft.com...
>I have bought a comp that has hidden recovery partition , the comp comes
>with
> vista premium activation key .... i have no recovery disks or vista
> premium
> dvd , is it possible to buy a vista premium dvd that does not include an
> activation key ( i can then activate with my own key) , or , can i get a
> copy
> of a premium dvd ?
>
> Id like to have the dvd incase my hard drive goes bellyup , i would then
> have no way to aceess vista , so having a premium dvd would be welcomed as
> backup and piece of mind.
>
> Does anyone know if/where I can buy a dvd without activation key or can i
> borrow/get a copy of the dvd from someone?
>
> Many thanks for replies!


Did you check all the documentation to see if there is a method of making
recovery DVDs from the recovery partition - this is also a common thing used
by many OEMs.

--

Mike Brannigan
 

My Computer

C

***** charles

#7
"geo g" <geog@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:41BC6960-A115-4E5F-82D4-9938F6F64146@microsoft.com...
> I have bought a comp that has hidden recovery partition , the comp comes

with
> vista premium activation key .... i have no recovery disks or vista

premium
> dvd , is it possible to buy a vista premium dvd that does not include an
> activation key ( i can then activate with my own key) , or , can i get a

copy
> of a premium dvd ?
>
> Id like to have the dvd incase my hard drive goes bellyup , i would then
> have no way to aceess vista , so having a premium dvd would be welcomed as
> backup and piece of mind.
>
> Does anyone know if/where I can buy a dvd without activation key or can i
> borrow/get a copy of the dvd from someone?
>
> Many thanks for replies!


Don't know if others will like talking about this but
you can usually buy an OEM copy over the Internet
where the seller complies with the legality by also
selling you a piece of hardware to make the
transaction "legal", usually a screw or something
along that level. End users are not supposed to
be able to get oem disks but hey capitalism and
the laws of supply and demand and grey markets
do exist. The key id is matched to the type of
cd/dvd. All cd/dvd have the same content on
them as in all oem's are exact copies and all
retails of the same product are exact copies.
It is the key id that makes the install unique.

later....
 

My Computer

C
#9
Yes I have done it for the 64-bit install of an OEM key where I didn't have
the 64-bit DVD

"Jupiter Jones [MVP]" <jones_jupiter@hotnomail.com> wrote in message
news:ui18bkZvHHA.4796@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl...
> Are you sure an OEM key will work with retail media?
>
> --
> Jupiter Jones [MVP]
> http://www3.telus.net/dandemar
> http://www.dts-l.org
>
>
> "cvp" <goawayspammers@nowhere.com> wrote in message
> news:OL%23EIGXvHHA.536@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
>> There is no difference in the DVDs, the key determines what version you
>> install.

>
 

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A

Andrew McLaren

#10
"Mike Brannigan" <Mike.Brannigan@localhost> wrote
> Did you check all the documentation to see if there is a method of making
> recovery DVDs from the recovery partition - this is also a common thing
> used by many OEMs.


Great point, Mike - thanks, I overlooked that option.

Note that only some OEMs offer this facility, so as Mike says, check the
docs (carefully). If in doubt, check with the manufacturer.
 

My Computer

A

Andrew McLaren

#11
"cvp" <goawayspammers@nowhere.com> wrote ...
> Yes I have done it for the 64-bit install of an OEM key where I didn't
> have the 64-bit DVD
>
>> Are you sure an OEM key will work with retail media?
>>
>>> There is no difference in the DVDs, the key determines what version you
>>> install.


Hmmm, I would not rely on using an OEM Product Key with Retail media; or
vice versa.

I'll admit I'm not 100% sure about this - all that Activation stuff makes my
head spin: KMS, Volume Licensing, MAK, blah, blah, blah! But ...

The key does determine the *edition* of Vista - Home, Business, Ultimate
etc. But it does not determine Volume Licensing vs Retail, for example - a
VL key in retail media will fail, and vice versa. OEMs pre-image their
machines from what is basically VL media.

There are subtle differences between the OEM build and the Retail Build of
Vista. Specifically, the OEM build of Windows will inspect the ACPI_SLIC
table in the BIOS for the OEM's Windows marker, during setup and activation
(and maybe other times, too). If you installed a retail version of Windows,
even if you used an OEM Product Key, Windows would no longer have this
ACPI_SLIC lookup behaviour. If this loophole is still open, I'm sure
Microsoft will be ready to plug it at any time without warning, in an update
or service pack.

The ACPI_SLIC lookup, is the feature which allows you to replace an OEM
motherboard without re-activating Windows.

I'm pretty certain you cannot install Windows from OEM media by using a
Retail key.

If your anecdotal experience has been the opposite is true - that you can
install from Retail media using an OEM key - that's good. This is the less
likely path to be restricted. But in the absence of positive confirmation
from Microsoft it is okay, I absolutely would not rely on it. When your
system has crashed and you need your PC back in a hurry, that's the worst
time to discover that you *thought* it was okay to use a OEM key in Retail
media ... but in fact, it isn't. The OP would want to prepare himself with
more reliable contingency plans. If all else fails then try using retail
media and an OEM key, as a last resort.

Just my 2 cents ...
Andrew
 

My Computer

#12
Hmmm... I can't say I've tried the same with VL keys or "VL media", but my
understanding was that (unlike XP) all shared the same media, and
behavioural differences were all driven by the key used. Actually, since it
CAN all be done with common media, it would be dumb not to do it this way.
Of course that counts for nothing!

"If you installed a retail version of Windows, even if you used an OEM
Product Key, Windows would no longer have this ACPI_SLIC lookup behaviour."

I don't know why not. Using common media to boot and get to the point where
the key is input shouldn't affect subsequent behaviour.


"Andrew McLaren" <andrew@fakeaddress.com> wrote in message
news:7F13B23D-BCB9-4EBA-BC0E-886E48FCFBE4@microsoft.com...
> "cvp" <goawayspammers@nowhere.com> wrote ...
>> Yes I have done it for the 64-bit install of an OEM key where I didn't
>> have the 64-bit DVD
>>
>>> Are you sure an OEM key will work with retail media?
>>>
>>>> There is no difference in the DVDs, the key determines what version you
>>>> install.

>
> Hmmm, I would not rely on using an OEM Product Key with Retail media; or
> vice versa.
>
> I'll admit I'm not 100% sure about this - all that Activation stuff makes
> my head spin: KMS, Volume Licensing, MAK, blah, blah, blah! But ...
>
> The key does determine the *edition* of Vista - Home, Business, Ultimate
> etc. But it does not determine Volume Licensing vs Retail, for example - a
> VL key in retail media will fail, and vice versa. OEMs pre-image their
> machines from what is basically VL media.
>
> There are subtle differences between the OEM build and the Retail Build of
> Vista. Specifically, the OEM build of Windows will inspect the ACPI_SLIC
> table in the BIOS for the OEM's Windows marker, during setup and
> activation (and maybe other times, too). If you installed a retail version
> of Windows, even if you used an OEM Product Key, Windows would no longer
> have this ACPI_SLIC lookup behaviour. If this loophole is still open, I'm
> sure Microsoft will be ready to plug it at any time without warning, in an
> update or service pack.
>
> The ACPI_SLIC lookup, is the feature which allows you to replace an OEM
> motherboard without re-activating Windows.
>
> I'm pretty certain you cannot install Windows from OEM media by using a
> Retail key.
>
> If your anecdotal experience has been the opposite is true - that you can
> install from Retail media using an OEM key - that's good. This is the less
> likely path to be restricted. But in the absence of positive confirmation
> from Microsoft it is okay, I absolutely would not rely on it. When your
> system has crashed and you need your PC back in a hurry, that's the worst
> time to discover that you *thought* it was okay to use a OEM key in Retail
> media ... but in fact, it isn't. The OP would want to prepare himself with
> more reliable contingency plans. If all else fails then try using retail
> media and an OEM key, as a last resort.
>
> Just my 2 cents ...
> Andrew
>
 

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A

Andrew McLaren

#13
You're correct that the number of base OS setup images has been greatly
reduced in Vista, compared to previous versions like 2003 and XP. And that
is a Good Thing; it greatly simplifies deployment. However, we're definitely
NOT down to one single, uniform image of Vista for all purposes, yet. That's
an elusive goal for the next version of Windows (or the version after that,
or the version after, etc ...)
 

My Computer

B

Bob C

#14
Geo,

Most computers that come with a hidden partition come with software to
create a set of recovery disks. Search in the help files or look for a
program in the start menu. My computer reminded me to create the set very
soon after I registered with the manufacturer. The program runs only once,
but will guide you thru the process (how many disks, etc.) One of the
computers I purchased, failed to complete the recovery, so I called the
company and they sent me a set of disks for $0

Hope this helps you,
Aloha,
Bobc


"geo g" <geog@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:41BC6960-A115-4E5F-82D4-9938F6F64146@microsoft.com...
>I have bought a comp that has hidden recovery partition , the comp comes
>with
> vista premium activation key .... i have no recovery disks or vista
> premium
> dvd , is it possible to buy a vista premium dvd that does not include an
> activation key ( i can then activate with my own key) , or , can i get a
> copy
> of a premium dvd ?
>
> Id like to have the dvd incase my hard drive goes bellyup , i would then
> have no way to aceess vista , so having a premium dvd would be welcomed as
> backup and piece of mind.
>
> Does anyone know if/where I can buy a dvd without activation key or can i
> borrow/get a copy of the dvd from someone?
>
> Many thanks for replies!
 

My Computer

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