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  1. #1
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    Windows 8.1 Repair/Reinstall

    Windows 8.1 Pro Repair/Reinstall is the first of two threads providing an illustrated step-by-step guide for a repair/reinstall of Windows 8.1.

    There are some interesting caveats, however. The "first time" run of a repair/reinstall did not request a Product Key. Running repair/reinstall on a Windows 8.1 installation that has already been through a repair/reinstall (the link above) does request a Product Key, but your original Windows 8 Product Key will work.

    I have not tried these procedures on an OEM Windows 8.1 installation. My assumption is that they should work much the same.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

  2. #2
    WS Lounge VIP Coochin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbearren View Post
    ...I have not tried these procedures on an OEM Windows 8.1 installation. My assumption is that they should work much the same.
    Last week I successfully performed a repair/re-install on a Win8.1 desktop PC after fitting a new motherboard & CPU. Fortunately I was able to boot into Win8.1 on the new hardware, but Windows Installer was corrupt, and some other system functionality was misbehaving.

    The PC had originally been custom-built by the customer's son, Win8 installed from an OEM installation DVD, and upgraded to 8.1 via the M$ Store. The customer could not find the OEM installation DVD, and there was no COA sticker on the case, so I extracted the product key from the registry before launching setup from a Win8.1 DVD I created in November 2014 from the M$ "Create installation media for Windows 8.1" webpage after someone posted the link in the WS Lounge.

    The only glitch was that after setup completed a Windows Activation prompt appeared asking for the product key. But it insisted that the key I extracted from the registry was invalid. After some googling with few useful results I decided to try activating by phone.

    To cut a long story short I spoke with a M$ activation support operator who didn't seem at all surprised that Win8.1 activation had failed. He did something on the activation server, after which Win8.1 was activated. Win8.1 activation bug?
    Computer Consultant/Technician since 1998 (first PC was Atari 1040STE in 1988).
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  3. #3
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    From the link: "Next, I had to input my Product Key. Notice on the screen, just below the Product Key field is, "This product key can only be used to add features to Windows. It can't be used to install Windows." This is before I entered anything. I'm thinking that the cautionary statement means that Setup had rooted into the registry and found my Media Center Product Key, since that is the Key that Belarc Advisor and Magical Jelly Bean both report as my Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center Product Key. That Key is not my Windows 8 Pro Product Key, which I entered. Yes, that's Windows 8 (not 8.1) Pro, the original Product Key I received in an email when I bought the Windows 8 upgrade on 10/26/2012 from Microsoft for $39.99."
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

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