Question Cheapest way to get Windows 10 (The Legal Way)

Grant Cole

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Title pretty much sums it up. I noticed Windows 10, even the one time install per a single computer is ridiculously expensive, and I believe Windows 10 is most compatible for modern gaming today so I'm wondering if there are cheaper alternatives that also work that is not illegal of course.
 

512-Bit

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If you don't care about a watermark, you can just download the windows 10 USB install tool off the official microsoft website, and when it asks, select "I don't have a product key." this will put a constant "activate windows" watermark on your desktop, and you won't be able to change the wallpaper, but hey, it's free. From what I've heard, there are ways around these 2 feature limitations.

If you want a legit full copy of windows 10, you can google "Cheap windows 10 product key" and watch a video or 2 until you see one with a link that leads you to a website to get a key. Some of theses websites sell windows 10 pro for as little as $15...
 

Grant Cole

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It says it's possible to transfer Windows from one device to another? So if I'm upgrading my PC, does that mean I can take windows from the motherboard of this computer, and transfer it to the new motherboard?
 

Grant Cole

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Okay, so technically speaking, there are no cheap alternatives to Windows 10, you either buy it full or deal with the watermarked version.

Also, I've been looking onto maybe instead just seeing if it was possible to transfer Windows 10 from this computer to the upgraded one when I get that one, but from what I'm beginning to understand, this won't be possible because this was a Free Windows 10 upgrade when they had that promotion, so for my new PC I have to get the expensive official OEM (assuming it's official, because $140 Canadian is no cheap dollar either) or Full from Newegg or Amazon.
 
Also, I've been looking onto maybe instead just seeing if it was possible to transfer Windows 10 from this computer to the upgraded one when I get that one, but from what I'm beginning to understand, this won't be possible because this was a Free Windows 10 upgrade when they had that promotion, so for my new PC I have to get the expensive official OEM (assuming it's official, because $140 Canadian is no cheap dollar either) or Full from Newegg or Amazon.
License transfer is possible.
Step 1 - link license to your microsoft acount on old pc;
Step 2 - install same edition of windows 10 (Home or Pro) on new pc;
Step 3 - log in with your microsoft account and use activation troubleshooter to transfer license.
 

Grant Cole

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Since it is the free upgrade version that was available when Microsoft was just handing these versions out when they first released it, would that still count? (It was originally Windows 7)
 

Grant Cole

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So technically, what I should do is download a Windows 10 installer to a thumb drive (How big should the thumb drive be?) and then install on the new motherboard when I get it, and just follow your steps above?

Also, the old motherboard will be passed down to my son, so I would assume that he'll be then using an unregistered watermarked version of Windows 10? (Like the first comment suggested), but then, would there also be issues there? It sounds even then it's something a person shouldn't be technically "allowed" to do, same as we discussed above about cheap licences. Should I consider getting him a cheaper Windows 7 or something like that once I've transferred my Windows 10 to the new pc?
 
So technically, what I should do is download a Windows 10 installer to a thumb drive (How big should the thumb drive be?) and then install on the new motherboard when I get it, and just follow your steps above?
You get 8GB USB flash drive,
download windows 10 media creation tool,
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10
run it and create windows installation media on USB flash drive.
After that - boot from the flash drive and install windows.
Also, the old motherboard will be passed down to my son, so I would assume that he'll be then using an unregistered watermarked version of Windows 10?
Yes. If you transfer windows license to a new pc, license on old one gets deactivated.
 

Vabe

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Title pretty much sums it up. I noticed Windows 10, even the one time install per a single computer is ridiculously expensive, and I believe Windows 10 is most compatible for modern gaming today so I'm wondering if there are cheaper alternatives that also work that is not illegal of course.
If your son attends a university or school, they might have a license that they can acquire for free. See the link. Also check this one!
 
A windows license is valid for only one pc(aka motherboard) at a time.

My suggestion is to pass on the old pc to your son and plan on buying a new license for your new build.
Just go ahead and pay for a retail license that can be moved in the future whenever you build again.
I see little benefit to the PRO version for the home user.
I did pay for PRO mainly to get a bit better control over when updates are done.
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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Since it is the free upgrade version that was available when Microsoft was just handing these versions out when they first released it, would that still count? (It was originally Windows 7)
Yes that counts.
I've done it personally.


For the new Windows install on your new PC:

But as stated above...just leave the existing Windows license with the system it's in now, for your son.
Buy a new license for your brand new system.

Or, leave it Unactivated. It will run in that Unactivated state seemingly forever. I have a Win 10 installed in a VM, to test exactly this.
Just short of 3 years, still running just fine.
 

Grant Cole

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I'm getting mixed answers here, some people are saying that I can transfer Windows 10 to the upgraded PC and the old one gets deactivated, while others are saying it's just flat out impossible, it's tied to the old motherboard forever.
 

thekillerx10

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I'm getting mixed answers here, some people are saying that I can transfer Windows 10 to the upgraded PC and the old one gets deactivated, while others are saying it's just flat out impossible, it's tied to the old motherboard forever.
i have a friend that bought a windows 10 pro key from ebay for 3$ from a year and it is still working good the cheapest way is from ebay buy from a top rated seller or if you don't trust ebay there is scdkey and g2a
 

atljsf

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So buying cheap OEMs from ebay may be no different than pirating them?
those oem licenses are cheap because are meant to be sold to oem manufacturers on countries where the economy doesn't allow to buy more expensive licenses and the cost of the entire pc has to be a low as possible, but they end up selling them in internet, that covers the entire planet, not just those small markets

officially is not right, but microsoft is not saying no to activate them, so is not ideal, but is not illegal really, otherwise microsfot would not only not allow to activate those, they would disable those licenses activated years ago using the same technique, microsoft what wants or needs iseverybody moving from old versions of windows into windows 10, free, cheap or expensive

on some sites where you buy these licenses if they ever get revoked and you end without license, they guarantee buyer protection and you get your money back

what i don't like is when you get a license key from a volume license, those indeed get revoked, because those license are meant to be usedwith a activation server inside a company using a local domain server, thye buy 1000 license vut those 1000 can get revoked all at once, if they ever bought them, if they are stolen from a company, you will loose your license and will have to fight for your money back
 

lynx1021

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If you own a PC with windows 7 or 8 you can still legally upgrade it to Windows 10 free , there are YouTube videos on it. They may stop doing that after the first of 2020 when support for windows 7 ends.
 

USAFRet

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what i don't like is when you get a license key from a volume license, those indeed get revoked, because those license are meant to be usedwith a activation server inside a company using a local domain server, thye buy 1000 license vut those 1000 can get revoked all at once, if they ever bought them, if they are stolen from a company, you will loose your license and will have to fight for your money back
That happened to a recent laptop of mine.
And its not that they get 'revoked' all at once, but rather that it can't check in to its corporate server.
Works fine initially, and right at the 6 month point when it can't check in and validate itself...poof, it unactivates itself.
 

zx128k

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Nov 23, 2019
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Retail key is the best way if you want to upgrade your PC without buying a new oem key each time. Also MS has to support you if you have a retail key. Most companies that make PC's have crap support or sell you an OEM key without support. You get better PC builds if you do it yourself and better support if you buy a Windows retail key.
 

512-Bit

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Apr 17, 2019
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It says it's possible to transfer Windows from one device to another? So if I'm upgrading my PC, does that mean I can take windows from the motherboard of this computer, and transfer it to the new motherboard?

If your Windows edition is OEM, it is locked to that specific device. If it is tied to your microsoft account, or a product key, yes, you can just transfer the license to your new computer.
 

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