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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Choice of discs or keys to repair XP

    I recently used Fred’s original article on repairing XP to get a Dell laptop running. Unfortunately, my only CD of Windows Home Edition was for the “retail” version. To my disappointment, entering the original product key was denied, so I was required to enter the one on my disk, which I did - reluctantly. Other than having to track down and start several Services, the process worked well.

    I now need to do the same on a Gateway, but still have no OEM disks of that OS. I see copies from HP and Dell on eBay, but none for Gateway.

    My question: will I need to find a Gateway disc, or will one from other OEM’s allow me to use the original product key on that PC?

  2. #2
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    Disks don't really matter, if they are the same version of Windows. It's the keys that matter. I am not sure whether you will be able to use the OEM key, but if it does not work, I would probably give Microsoft's support a call and explain the problem.

  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    That was not my experience on the Dell laptop. Performing the repair from my "retail" disk would not allow me to proceed using the original OEM product key. I had to use the Key from the "retail" version of XP Home.

  4. #4
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    Was the OEM a XP Home version?

  5. #5
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    Retail, OEM, Volume Licensed (internal for large corporations), System Builder and Upgrade versions all have different keys.

    With OEM CD's, some of them will allow an install without a key (they normally check during boot that the PC/laptop is from the same maker, there are some OEM's that don't), if they do but the machine doesn't match the CD brand, you'll need to input your own key. If the brand matches, you'll probably be auto-validated.

    For a repair install, the SP level of the CD must be the same or higher than the version to be repaired otherwise your only option is a wipe or parallel install. You cannot repair Pro with a Home CD.

    So the answer is: try as many brands as you can, there are some that install first and ask questions (where's your key?) later.

  6. #6
    New Lounger
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    Oh dear that answers a query I was about to make. I was given a laptop which has XP Pro on it and it was owned by a fellow who used it for work and I think it was supplied by his workplace - a university. So the darn thing has a group policy installed don it which I want to get cleared but haven't got a disk as it was obviously a bulk buy by the uni. I cannot factory default it probably for the same reason so am desperately looking round for a disk that I can reinstall from but I think I have more chance of winning the lottery.

    Shame because the machine itself is or has been well looked after and I was planning on giving it to the young fellow who mows my lawns for me. Oh well them's the breaks

  7. #7
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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  8. #8
    New Lounger
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    Thanks Clint will give them a shot

  9. #9
    New Lounger
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    ruirib: the laptop is a Dell [OEM], but my only Windows Home disk is the retail version. As that did not work, it appears I may need several OEM versions to repair the Gateway PC and salvage its product key.

    Thanks to all of you for the advice.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    Ruuc, if you still have the Dell, you could de-license it to transfer your retail XP over onto the Gateway. Dell OEM CD's are pretty easy to pickup, checkout Clint's Ebay link and look for one that suits the key.

    EDIT: here's a Gateway XP Home SP1.
    Last edited by satrow; 2012-01-31 at 21:17.

  11. #11
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    Make an installation setup from the i386

    It's possible to make a CD or DVD, or simply to do a repair installation, using the i386 folder that was put on the laptop when WinXP was originally installed. Go here, http://www.howtohaven.com/system/cre...etupdisk.shtml and follow the instructions to the letter. It's not necessary to burn a disk. You can do a full installation from the hard drive itself. It's better, clearly, if you can put the installation files on a separate partition, but that's also possible. The procedure given there involves interleaving Service Pack 2, and you'll likely want to proceed with SP3 too. It's very important that the i386 folder *not* be the one found in the Windows folder, so watch to ensure that your machine has the proper folder, containing the installation gear. You[ll need the 15-character key. If that's not pasted somewhere on the outside of the computer, you can find the key, using one of the key finders available thru a quick web search. I use Win KeyFinder.

  12. #12
    Lounger
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    Clint,
    I believe that the WIN XL SP3 CD is just the update, not a full install - it costs about $5 but is nice to have when you are doing a clean reinstall and don't want to wait to download all the updated over the internet. At least that's what my SP3 CD does.
    Paulbyr in NC

  13. #13
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    Similar problem - need to repair XP Media Edition SP3

    Hello. I have a desktop Dell computer with Windows Media Edition SP3 and have recovered from a difficult virus situation and the OS needs to be repaired. I have the original Media Center disk yet when I put it in the drive to begin the repair, I get a message that the OS on the computer is a newer version that the one on the setup CD. Obviously, that will always be the case since the setup CD doesn't have SP1, SP2 and SP3.

    What is the best way to handle this situation? It has to be a repair; I can not do a clean install as I have programs on there that I can not find the CD or key for. Belarc Advisor is a good source for the keys however I still need the CD's to load the programs.

    Suggestions as to where to go from here?

    Thank you for your help!

    cs.
    "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."
    Mahatma Ghandi

  14. #14
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    You need to 'slipstream' your Dell disc to the required SP level - here is one page about it, there are many others.

  15. The Following User Says Thank You to satrow For This Useful Post:

    Citsme (2012-02-14)

  16. #15
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    Thank you for your response, Satrow, it is totally appreciated. This project has been hanging over my head for many months. I have done a slipstream for XP Pro and it worked perfectly. Somewhere, and this is the one time I didn't screen print it, I read that you can not use a slipstream for Windows XP MEDIA EDITION! The Media Edition part seems to be the real problem. I am trying to see if it is possible to delete SP 2 and 3 but so far, I have not found anything out about that.
    I will check your links above and see if the one I saw was incorrect (I hope!)
    Sorry for the delay in responding, apparently my email notification settings need to be reviewed.
    Any more suggestions would gladly be appreciated!

    cs.

    Found after I just posted: Slipstreaming is not possible in XP MediaCenter Edition. If It's slipstreamed, it becomes XP Professional. The latest version of XP Mediacenter is 2005. However, you can try adding some patches in the installation disc. I've tried it and I succeeded. All the best!
    AND ON THE SAME PAGE OF A FORUM:
    At first I want to say that Slipstreaming SP3 into XP MCE 2005 is ALMOST supported, but we have to hack somethings. (That precedes a long page of code? that needs to be followed.
    I am totally confused - Can it be done or not???
    Here is a link to that page just as an FYI this is a Windows page: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/itproxpsp/thread/8546f297-9781-422b-b53e-4f283e6b13dc/

    Help!

    Thank you!
    Last edited by Citsme; 2012-02-14 at 19:35. Reason: Additional relevant information!
    "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."
    Mahatma Ghandi

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