bri

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Apr 21, 2004
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Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.general (More info?)

I would like to reformat my computer but there is one concern I have: you see
when I first got my computer I had to activate my copy of Windows XP online
(home edition). So if I reformat, then install Windows again, I'll have to
reactivate it again. But I already registered my product key with Microsoft
the first time I activated Windows. What do I do? Will I have any trouble
reactivating? And if so, how do I bypass it?

Any help would be appreciated!
 
G

Guest

Guest
Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.general (More info?)

In news:EB6BF1C6-880C-43DE-8E2E-00D15B52308E@microsoft.com,
Bri <Bri@discussions.microsoft.com> typed:

> I would like to reformat my computer but there is one concern I
> have:
> you see when I first got my computer I had to activate my copy
> of
> Windows XP online (home edition). So if I reformat, then
> install
> Windows again, I'll have to reactivate it again. But I already
> registered my product key with Microsoft the first time I
> activated
> Windows. What do I do?


Activate it again.


> Will I have any trouble reactivating?



No. You may reinstall and reactivate as often as you need or want
to. If it's been more than 120 days, activation over the
interenet should proceed as easily as it did the first time.
Worst case, if it's been fewer than 120 days, you'll be prompted
to activate by voice call to an 800 number, but that's almost as
fast and easy.

However why do you want to reformat and reinstall? In my view,
it's usually a mistake. With a modicum of care, it should never
be necessary to reinstall Windows (XP or any other version). I've
run Windows 3.0, 3.1, WFWG 3.11, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows
2000, and Windows XP, each for the period of time before the next
version came out, and each on two machines here. I never
reinstalled any of them, and I have never had anything more than
an occasional minor problem.

It's my belief that this mistaken notion stems from the technical
support people at many of the larger OEMs. Their solution to
almost any problem they don't quickly know the answer to is
"reformat and reinstall." That's the perfect solution for them.
It gets you off the phone quickly, it almost always works, and it
doesn't require them to do any real troubleshooting (a skill that
most of them obviously don't possess in any great degree).

But it leaves you with all the work and all the problems. You
have to restore all your data backups, you have to reinstall all
your programs, you have to reinstall all the Windows and
application updates,you have to locate and install all the needed
drivers for your system, you have to recustomize Windows and all
your apps to work the way you're comfortable with.

Besides all those things being time-consuming and troublesome,
you may have trouble with some of them: can you find all your
application CDs? Can you find all the needed installation codes?
Do you have data backups to restore? Do you even remember all the
customizations and tweaks you may have installed to make
everything work the way you like?

Occasionally there are problems that are so difficult to solve
that Windows should be reinstalled cleanly. But they are few and
far between; reinstallation should not be a substitute for
troubleshooting; it should be a last resort, to be done only
after all other attempts at troubleshooting by a qualified person
have failed.

If you have problems, post them here; it's likely that someone
can help you and a reinstallation won't be required.


--
Ken Blake - Microsoft MVP Windows: Shell/User
Please reply to the newsgroup
 
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Guest

Guest
Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.general (More info?)

Bri wrote:
> I would like to reformat my computer but there is one concern I have: you see
> when I first got my computer I had to activate my copy of Windows XP online
> (home edition). So if I reformat, then install Windows again, I'll have to
> reactivate it again. But I already registered my product key with Microsoft
> the first time I activated Windows. What do I do? Will I have any trouble
> reactivating? And if so, how do I bypass it?
>
> Any help would be appreciated!


Registration is, and always has been, entirely optional, so you
needn't concern yourself with it.

There's no limit to the number of times you can reinstall and
activate the same WinXP license on the same PC. If you have a retail
license, there's no limit to the number of times you can remove it from
one PC and install it on another. Nor is there ever a charge. Nor does
a Product Key (so long as it's not an evaluation license) ever expire.
If it's been more than 120 days since you last activated that specific
Product Key, you'll most likely be able to activate via the Internet
without problem. If it's been less, you might have to make a 5 minute
phone call.

Here are the facts pertaining to activation:

Piracy Basics - Microsoft Product Activation
http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/basics/activation/

Windows Product Activation (WPA)
http://www.aumha.org/a/wpa.htm


--

Bruce Chambers

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both at once. - RAH