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Old 11-23-2013, 01:54 PM   #1
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Default Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

Let's say I have a computer I bought that came with Windows 7 and I have either misplaced or lost my installation cd's / files. Is it possible for me to take the license number I got when buying the pc and finding the Windows 7 install files somewhere using them both to format my computer and reinstall windows? I realize I would have to find and install the drivers for all of my components manually.

Thank you!
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Old 11-23-2013, 02:03 PM   #2
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

yes, your computer should have a windows product on it physically. if its a laptop it should be like on the bottom of the computer. or desktop should be on the back. you will have to get the same version OS that the product key is for.
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Old 11-23-2013, 02:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

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yes, your computer should have a windows product on it physically. if its a laptop it should be like on the bottom of the computer. or desktop should be on the back. you will have to get the same version OS that the product key is for.
So what you're saying is that it is really as easy as downloading a good copy of Windows (the same version that my key is for), formatting my hard drive & installing windows?

This sounds too good to be true. I was told I can get the install files directly off of the Microsoft website, is this correct?

My Key says 'Windows 7 Home Prem OA'.
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Old 11-23-2013, 02:45 PM   #4
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

yes, i have done it many times. under that there is a key is should look something like this "xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxx" but an alphnumeral code.

I am not sure about the downloading from microsoft, it may be possible. someone else may be able to answer that for you.
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Old 11-23-2013, 06:52 PM   #5
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

You can legally download a cd from Digital River. For your version:
Windows 7 Home Premium x64
Windows 7 Home Premium x86
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:28 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

Well I really appreciate your help, fellas. Hopefully I'll be able to actually do this whole thing with only myself and your help. I'm a little worried though. A friend of mine bought a new computer a while back, and it took him a week or two to the thing going. He said he didn't know anything about computers at the time, so this may go a little smoother for me. He was saying something about, how he needed to have a driver for the network card before he could connect to the internet and then downloaded the other drivers. But even then, it was like he had to get drivers for other drivers, stuff I've never even heard before.

Not too long ago, I just tried to build my first tower, myself. And in the end I ended up meeting a very friendly and helpful gentleman at a computer shop in town, he offered to give me and XP license and help me set up the computer, for free, though I offered him a few bucks anyway. Anyhow, though I didn't really set the computer up, I was there and it all looked pretty straightforward. He had the CD and the license number.

That was XP though. I'm thinking this could be different, more complicated, with a Windows 7 and a real GeForce with some power. Is it easy to install a graphics card as well? I'll just go grab the drives of nvidia, throw them on my USB and when I get Windows installed I can go about my business?

I feel like there's something I'm missing, it can't be that simple.

Thanks for that link, iPwn, I'm gonna go ahead and start grabbing those drivers. Again, I really appreciate the help, guys. I'm going to start this pretty soon and I'll let you's know how it goes.
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Old 11-25-2013, 04:37 AM   #7
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

I confirm it from my side. As long as you have the key, you can download any untouched Windows identical to yours, burn it on a DVD, then use the key with it. I did it on my HP Pavilion laptop with Windows 7 Home Premium. Then I went to HP's website for the drivers and found them all using the same model code. Easy.

HP can take their recovery system else where

If it is custom built, you only need to know the devices' names and brands and get their drivers from their websites. But before installing any drivers, make sure you install the motherboard's chipset's drivers. Very important to avoid possible compatibilities issues specially with video cards.

Don't worry about it, its easy.

Windows XP has many corporate key's scattered around so it is easy to get original copies. Not sure about its legality tho.
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:05 AM   #8
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

You may have to call microsoft's help number if it won't activate, but it's really easy to do. We used to do it this way all the time at the computer shop I used to work at.
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Old 11-25-2013, 09:51 AM   #9
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

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He was saying something about, how he needed to have a driver for the network card before he could connect to the internet and then downloaded the other drivers.
I keep the drivers for all my PC's backed up on an external drive (why keep downloading?)

If this is your first time and you're eager to start, I would simply get the Network driver on a USB and go for it. You'll have bout 200 or so updates to go through so you have plenty of time during the setup process to get the rest of the drivers and install them.
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Old 11-25-2013, 11:34 AM   #10
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Default Re: Bit of a noob question in regards to installing Windows

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I keep the drivers for all my PC's backed up on an external drive (why keep downloading?)

If this is your first time and you're eager to start, I would simply get the Network driver on a USB and go for it. You'll have bout 200 or so updates to go through so you have plenty of time during the setup process to get the rest of the drivers and install them.
This. I always grab the network driver before I reformat name-brand computers. From there if I don't have the rest of the drivers I can go to the support site and get the rest which isn't all that bad and we can always give you a hand if you run into troubles.
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