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  1. #1
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    How To Download Replacement Windows OS?

    Just for fun I bought a used basic rig online, with a wiped HDD.
    It includes a COA sticker for Vista HP on the case.
    Is it possible to download the complete OS from the Windows site, and authenticate it using the COA key?
    Or do you need a Vista DVD to do this install?
    I have never installed any OS without a DVD, so any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,
    rstew

  2. #2
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    The Windows site does not include downloads for any version of Windows. Even if it did, Windows 8 excepted, you'd still need to burn the downloaded ISO into a DVD. You can create the installation media following the instructions here: How to Download a Vista ISO and Create an Installation DVD or USB.
    Rui
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruirib View Post
    The Windows site does not include downloads for any version of Windows. Even if it did, Windows 8 excepted, you'd still need to burn the downloaded ISO into a DVD. You can create the installation media following the instructions here: How to Download a Vista ISO and Create an Installation DVD or USB.
    Thanks for that help, but unfortunately those download files dont seem to be available at present.
    Another question; are the COA sticker autehntication keys specific to one version only, or could say one key for a home version be used for a pro version for instance? Or could a 64 bit key be used for a 32 bit install?

    Thanks,
    Rod

  4. #4
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    The files are available for download. If you click the download button, you are taken to http://www.heidoc.net/joomla/technol...download-links

    The links are there (scroll the page a bit). I tried the English files and all started downloading.
    Rui
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  5. #5
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    Win Vista was available for download off Digital River up until a few months ago when MS changed servers and apparently dropped support. I hope Heidi's link still works, but I doubt it. There are other places that mirrored this (rather grey legal area). There are also others that have cracked, broken and malware infested versions. I doubt this site would approve of me providing a safe link. I hope Heidi works. There is a Dell site...if I can find it I will provide the link (it worked even for non-Dell product keys).

    edit (found it, but its broke)
    http://en.community.dell.com/support...tal-river.aspx

    It is true that any Vista disk (they will install the Home, Business or Ultimate) will work as long as it is the correct 32-bit or 64-bit that goes with the key and the key will decide which OS is installed. So if you can find someone with one you are in business. [Not big big recovery disks though some makers shipped a real OEM disk]
    Last edited by Fascist Nation; 2014-08-30 at 22:45.

  6. #6
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    If you run into issues with acquiring Vista ISO's/drivers and since you know the 25 character key , consider contacting the manufacturer for install discs. It might cost a few $'s but I thought I would bring up the subject so you can get the computer up & running.
    An alternate consideration visit http://www.restoredisks.com/ for the software for your Vista computer. Read the information and then call them; I haven't checked the latest prices but last I knew they are not expensive; since I don't know the make/model I couldn't look it up
    Also you might like to know that Vista reaches EOL on April 11, 2017 and in my experience Vista easily will upgrade to Windows 7 which doesn't see EOL until Jan 14 2020.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ruirib View Post
    The files are available for download. If you click the download button, you are taken to http://www.heidoc.net/joomla/technol...download-links

    The links are there (scroll the page a bit). I tried the English files and all started downloading.
    ruirib;
    I went to the heidoc site per the link.
    When I downloaded the three file, the .wim files had extra extensions on the end and the 14-6453 exe file downloaded under the name of WindowsInstaller ----. The site was not Digital River or Azure; it was something called ---blob.core ----.
    None of this looked right so I deleted the files and got out of there.
    Maybe I am just paranoid, but I have been burned a couple of times downloading bogus files.

    rstew

  8. #8
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    Well, it's up to you, really. The first link, from Vistax64.com stated clearly that there were no more digital river links. If you check the links for the 64 bit Vista version, they are all from the windows.net domain, which is owned by Microsoft. Some of the 32 bit links are also from the same domain.

    I cannot, obviously, vouch for the files, but the downloads being from a domain owned by Microsoft would be assurance enough, for me, were I in your shoes.
    Rui
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