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Old 04-07-2016, 04:43 AM   #1
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Default Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

Hi all.
I have had two laptops in recently that the owners wanted speeding up and the upgrading to Windows 10. These were an Acer Travelmate that had originally had Windows 8 Pro and EUFI bios but the customer had asked the supplier to revert it to Windows 7 and a much older Dell Inspiron that had always had Windows 7 installed.

I ended up doing a factory reset on both machines because that was the only way that I could clear all the junk. But prior to that because the customers had asked to be upgraded to Windows 10 I thought I would just do a clean install of Win 10 from a USB stick that I had made using the Microsoft Media Creation tool. Both computers had activated Windows 7 installs on them and both computers had the little MS window icon to do the Win 10 upgrade. But when I tried to install Windows 10 from my USB stick the first thing that popped up was a box asking me to enter the product number. This I did and in both cases the product number was rejected. There was no option on the box to skip entering the product number so once it was rejected I could go no further with the Win 10 install. I also went back to original Windows 7 install and tried to upgrade using the icon to download Windows 10 and in both cases the product number was rejected. As I have said both computers had an activated install of Windows 7.

Now I know Microsoft are a law unto themselves and itís highly unlikely that anyone can help out with this but I thought it was worth a try. So does anyone know why this would have happened. I tried to contact Microsoft but that was like trying pulling hens teeth so gave up on that score after an hour or so. Also I did extract the original Windows 8 product number that was hidden in the Acerís EUFI guts but that was rejected as well.

So can anyone throw any light on this please.
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Old 04-07-2016, 05:21 AM   #2
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

The Windows 7 product key is still seen as a "Windows 7" key on Microsoft's systems.

The common way of upgrading should be the offered in-place upgrade, during this process the Windows 7 key converts to a Windows 10 key. After the in-place upgrade is complete and Windows 10 is activated, you can then reinstall a fresh copy of Windows 10 with the old product key.

More recent changes mean that you should technically be able to use the Windows 7 key to activate Windows 10. If that's not working then I would personally proceed with the installation, saying you don't have a product key, then try and activate it once Windows is installed.

There should be a small blue button (not obvious) in the bottom centre of the installation screen which says "I do not have a product key" or something along those lines.
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Old 04-07-2016, 06:55 AM   #3
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

Maybe try some different installation media, Windows 10 Tech Bench Upgrade Program (Ignore the title). I have and still use ISO's I've download from here and don't require the stupid media creation tool.

This just taken straight from an article on How To Geek.

Quote:
How the Free Windows 10 License Works
The free Windows 10 license Microsoft is providing to upgraders works differently. Microsoft won’t issue you a Windows 10 product key. Instead, when you perform an upgrade from within Windows 7 Service Pack 1 or Windows 8.1, the upgrade process registers a unique ID associated with your PC’s hardware on Microsoft’s Windows activation servers.

In the future, whenever you install Windows 10 on that same PC, it will automatically report to Microsoft’s activation servers. Microsoft will confirm that the PC with that specific hardware configuration is allowed to use Windows 10, and it’ll automatically be activated.

This isn’t actually made clear in the installation process itself. To clean-install Windows 10 on a machine activated in this way, you have to continually skip all the product key prompts while installing it.

This automatic process only works if your PC has the same hardware it had when you upgraded to Windows 10.
How to Use Your Free Windows 10 License After Changing Your PC’s Hardware
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Old 04-07-2016, 08:44 AM   #4
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

Yes but as I said I couldn't get past the product key prompt. I agree that normally you can skip those prompts and actually install Windows 10 and activate after the install. In both these cases the first thing that popped up was a product key prompt and there wasn't a "skip this step". I couldn't gert past that point.

I can also, perhaps, understand the older machine's product number not being registered on Microsoft's activation web site but the newer machine had EUFI bios and the product number is imbedded in the bios. That, surely, should have been able to activate. I did extract the product number from the EUFI and entered that into the prompt, don't forget that this machine had originally been a Windows 8 Pro computer, it had the sticker on the bottom, but it just would not accept it and there was no way I could get past that point.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:20 AM   #5
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

My apologies if you've already done what I'm about to suggest. Have you tried running the upgrade through Windows using a USB disk you've created then format and reinstall Windows 10. I know that may sound time consuming but then the computers will have registered their information with the MS activation servers and doing a clean install shouldn't be an issue as the Windows 10 keys are basically tied back to the original keys the machines.
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Old 04-07-2016, 10:37 AM   #6
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

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Originally Posted by BK_123 View Post
My apologies if you've already done what I'm about to suggest. Have you tried running the upgrade through Windows using a USB disk you've created then format and reinstall Windows 10. I know that may sound time consuming but then the computers will have registered their information with the MS activation servers and doing a clean install shouldn't be an issue as the Windows 10 keys are basically tied back to the original keys the machines.
No need to apologise BK any suggestions are welcome. To be honest I have given the two computers in question back and told the owners that I can't sort them out. I haven't charged them anything in spite of working on both for over 2 days but then I only do this stuff as a hobby. But I am interested to know why the product numbers wont register. Also why the two times I tried to upgrade, once via the desktop icon and once via my media created USB stick both of which I haven't had any problems with in the past, wouldn't work in the way I expected. I, initially, attempted the upgrade and I wasn't connected to the internet and it still failed. So in essence it is only for my knowledge that I would like to know. I am retired and don't charge a lot to sort a computer out (£25 plus cost of bits if needed) so basically they can go and pay PC World's exhorbitant prices if I cannot sort it. They did get their computers back in exactly the same state that I go tthem in except they weren't slow any more.


Still, I would have liked to have known. I suppose Microsoft might have told me but I wasn't going to hang on the phone for them. Oh yeah I did try that suggestion BK. Well I did format the HDD and then tried from my USB stick so it was similar and that didn't work. I put a different disk in both machines though to do that just in case I wasn't able to put anything back on later.
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Old 04-07-2016, 03:57 PM   #7
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

Just had an email from one of the guys that owns one of the rogue laptops. He has been on to the company that he bought it from and they say because they downgraded the computer from Windows 8 to Windows 7 they had an agreement with Microsoft that the two serial numbers associated with that laptop would be blocked. I don't know why they would have done that but that explains why that computer could not be activated.
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Old 04-07-2016, 04:46 PM   #8
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

With windows 7, you have to do an inplace upgrade of the OS to 10, which was mentioned and that would convert the PK to windows 10 key. Once that is done you can do a clean install of 10. I agree that the downgrade had something to do with this conundrum.

On windows 8 you can do a straight clean install and no product key is needed.

All this is moot since you given returned the laptops.
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Old 04-07-2016, 05:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

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Originally Posted by bassfisher6522 View Post
With windows 7, you have to do an inplace upgrade of the OS to 10, which was mentioned and that would convert the PK to windows 10 key. Once that is done you can do a clean install of 10. I agree that the downgrade had something to do with this conundrum.

On windows 8 you can do a straight clean install and no product key is needed.

All this is moot since you given returned the laptops.
Well it's not entirely moot as the two machines involved belong to two of my near neighbours but, basically, I have washed my hands of the computers.

On the issue of the Win 8 It wouldn't do a straight install. Again I tried it with a different hard drive so that anything on the old hard drive wouldn't affect it. Essentially I did what I would have done if he had brought me the machine with a duff HDD. It wouldn't activate either Windows 7 or Windows 8 and I even extracted the Windows 8 product number from the EUFI and still no go. Everything was blocked, it appears, by Microsoft for whatever reason. If he hadn't made a factory backup (well he hadn't I did before I started mucking about) he would have lost his computer because none of the operating systems would activate. I do have some spare Win 7 product numbers that I have ripped off old machines in the past and one of those did activate but I wasn't prepared to let him have that as, essentially from Microsoft's point of view, that is illegal. As I have said whichever way I tried to do it I got as far as the first "insert your product number" prompt and there was no skip button or anything it just said "this product number will not work." I have done loads of Win 7 and 8 upgrades over the last few months and never come across this before.

Oh well as I say Microsoft are a law unto themselves.
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Old 04-10-2016, 02:11 AM   #10
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Default Re: Win 7 to Win 10 upgrade problems.

Here in the United States I have used Microsoft's phone activation, I assume there is that possibility in the UK? If not then there should be and perhaps the EU can persuade them or the UK by themselves. Still though I have had problems with phone activation myself and I have had to do it twice because the computer doesn't always understand what you say. I wish they had people handling the process instead of computers.
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