Can I Create a Dual Boot Using the Same Windows Key but Different Microsoft Accounts?

Aug 27, 2018
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I am trying to create something of a unique PC dual boot setup in which I insert a USB flash which my BIOS will by default boot from, and when I remove it my system will boot from the internal hard drive (I already have windows installed here). I've researched this and it's plausible, but as I'm trying to in theory create two separate computers using the same hardware, I need each option to boot to a different Microsoft Account.


My first idea is to use the Microsoft tool to copy your ISO files in order to use the same product key to get a second windows copy for the Flash Drive, but if product keys are account-linked it causes a number of issues. Is this impossible, and if not, how should I go about this?


Please ask any clarifying questions! Thanks!
 

The Paladin

Glorious
Herald
doesn't work that way the account (email) isn't only use a a registry of hardware devices and license yo have.
so 1 email or two make no differences, as it has the hash code of your cpu/motherboard etc.and registers it attached to that serial no.
why when you upgrade your hardware under windows 10 it asks you if it is an upgrade and asks you to identify the previous hardware to deregister it from that to register it to the new system MS has it that you can ONLY have 1 serial number per hardware configuration.

if your asking to " how do I install windows on a thumb drive, better get a 256GB one because it needs anbout 60GB all by itself.
and yes you can boot from it. you just need to use the USB thumb drive as HDD and disconnect internal HDD when installing windows on it, so that you can force the OS to be installed on the thumb drive independently.

only failure will be your licensing in this case, same computer and 2 emails. is pointless, use the same email, the registration of the OS doesn't take in consideration your HDD/USB only cpu/motherboard are.
 
Aug 27, 2018
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Thanks for answering; it sounds like you're using a translator and it's a little hard to understand parts of your answer. I understand from your answer that you can have only 1 serial number per hardware configuration. What I want to do is use the Windows Media Creation tool to make a second copy of my windows account, so same serial number. I will install it like you said on the Flash Drive, but I want to know if I can have that drive boot to a different Microsoft Account; as if it were a different computer. So: can I do that / are serial numbers tied to accounts?
 

howtobeironic

Upstanding
Jun 16, 2018
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Serial number is tied to a special hash generated by and from the hardware you have. This is called "hardware hash".
Windows limits its usage to:
If an OEM/Digital Entitlement(Upgraded from Windows 7/8.1) license, it can be only installed to that computer with the unique hash. (Changing any hardware except peripherals pretty much changes the hash, but you can still activate via phone unless the motherboard is the same (EXACT same))
If the license is Retail, it can be used in ONLY ONE computer at the same time, so you should remove the key or the entire previous installation that uses the key to install into another device.

There was a conflict about this, a user asked for help after installing a dualboot with the same key, the newer one did not quite accept it.

Bottom line, you can try it. At the worst, the new one won't work. There's nearly no chance that the older one will also towel out, which in case you can reactivate it by a 5-minute chatter on the phone (Makes sure that you got the key,if it's not upgraded. And I don't get the responsibility, back up things)

If you have a Pro and a windows to go compatible drive you can set up one of those. It's much easier than to order your BIOS to boot from the USB all the time and struggle with the licensing, however those drives are not THAT cheap.

Hope this helps
 
Aug 27, 2018
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That was very helpful. I'm luckily using an MSI B350 chipset BIOS where changing boot order is just click-and-drag, SUPER easy. Do you have a second opinion about my question of whether I could have the second copy boot to a different Microsoft Account (as if it were a different computer)? So I guess "Does Windows tie serial numbers to Accounts?" Also, just out of curiosity, you said changing any hardware besides perifs will change hash. I always thought you could change whatever besides the MOBO + HDD with windows and be OK.
 

howtobeironic

Upstanding
Jun 16, 2018
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There's a statement saying that "To reactivate your Windows license on the same computer easily" on the online account adding screen, so I assume that accounts also have things to do with licensing.

The hardware has mainly relates on mobo, it takes a 5-minute chatter on the phone with Windows to reactivate if Windows installation won't accept it.

You can give it a try. At worst you will have to use the second without a license, which is legally possible.
 
Aug 27, 2018
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Alright, thanks!
 

karenjoly

Respectable
Apr 13, 2018
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The logic here appears inescapably negative. If there is a MS account associated with a licence it is also associated with the mainboard. Using a USB drive changes nothing . There will be no second account in this scenario.
 

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