Windows suddenly not genuine

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nyxanna

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I have had my PC for 2 years now. I bought it on Amazon. It's a Zoostorm PC.

Obviously I got the OS with it. I don't have a product key, no. I just insert the CD and it somehow just "resets" itself to the way the PC was when I bought it.

Now suddenly Windows is saying that it is not genuine. It takes me to some verification page that just leads me to another page saying I have to buy Windows to solve this "issue".

Why is this happening, really? I'm also pretty sure I activated Windows as well.

I'd love to use Linux, if games worked better on it.
 

John Bauer

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Are you sure you don't have a product key? Have you checked in any manuals, etc for it?

I got an Acer netbook and they put the product key on a sticker on the underside of it. So heck, it should be somewhere.
 

nyxanna

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I replaced the computers case so I can't look for the sticker anymore. There was one but I never copied the product key. I just made sure to destroy the sticker after giving the old case away.

I used Belarc Advisor to trace my product key in the registry and when inserting it into the Verify Windows box I get the error code 0xC004E003
 

nyxanna

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I googled it and the first thing that came up was about having to call Microsoft to talk to a Live Activation Rep which will probably cost money. This is just stupid honestly.
 

nyxanna

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I did change the computers mainboard, CPU and RAM last month. Does Microsoft seriously think that when you change parts you should be buying a new Windows, or that it's suddenly a 2nd PC?
 

dalaran

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Sadly it's exactly what's happening

See this
http://www.microsoft.com/OEM/en/licensing/sblicensing/Pages/licensing_faq.aspx

"Q. Can a PC with an OEM Windows operating system have its motherboard upgraded and keep the same license? What if it was replaced because it was defective?

A. Generally, an end user can upgrade or replace all of the hardware components on a computer—except the motherboard—and still retain the license for the original Microsoft OEM operating system software. If the motherboard is upgraded or replaced for reasons other than a defect, then a new computer has been created. Microsoft OEM operating system software cannot be transferred to the new computer, and the license of new operating system software is required. If the motherboard is replaced because it is defective, you do not need to acquire a new operating system license for the PC as long as the replacement motherboard is the same make/model or the same manufacturer's replacement/equivalent, as defined by the manufacturer's warranty."
 

nyxanna

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I seriously do not want to buy Windows 8. It only gives ~5% more FPS and I read that Microsoft will be releasing Windows 9 next year.

I find it unbelievable that you have to buy a new OS every time you upgrade your motherboard. I thought Microsoft would encourage upgrading.
 

Jaxem

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This is only the case for OEM versions, where most people don't usually upgrade or even ever open their machine. I had this happen when i damaged a motherboard and had to call after replacing it. They didn't charge me a thing (from my experience and others i've talked to license key issue calls aren't usually charged for) and after telling the support rep what happened, they gave me an activation id.
 

Dark Lord of Tech

Speedy Gonzales
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With windows 7 OEM the license is tied to the first motherboard it's installed on.With Windows 8 you can move it to another build when you are done with this one , but only one computer at a time.With Windows 8 0EM you can change all the hardware you want including the motherboard.





OEM versions of Windows 7 are identical to Full License Retail versions except for the following:

- OEM versions do not offer any free Microsoft direct support from Microsoft support personnel

- OEM licenses are tied to the very first computer you install and activate it on

- OEM versions allow all hardware upgrades except for an upgrade to a different model motherboard

- OEM versions cannot be used to directly upgrade from an older Windows operating system


Microsoft.com ^


OEM vs. Retail

OEM Windows 7 comes preinstalled on computers. This is the cheapest way to buy windows. Large PC manufacturers like Dell, HP etc. (collectively called royalty OEMs) install windows on millions of such PCs. The main characteristics of such systems are:

The license agreement and support agreement is between you and the PC maker, not MS.

Activation by the end user is not required. Windows is preactivated at the factory by the OEM using images and standard SLP keys.

Your copy of windows is locked to that PC. The license is not transferable.

OEM system builder is what you get when you buy from say Newegg or from a local "white box" vendor. It too has the characteristics of Royalty OEM windows. Although it is possible for an individual to buy a System Builder copy, the license requires that the software be installed using the OPK (OEM preinstall kit) and then resold.

Retail version is what you buy from a retailer like Amazon or Bestbuy. Its a full price version that comes packaged in a retail box with a retail product key. It has to be activated online via MS servers using the key on the box, it is not tied to the PC it was first installed on, though it can only be used on a single computer at a time. And, MS directly provides the support for it. It is also more expensive than OEM copies.

As far as functionality is concerned, theres no difference between any of the versions above, given any specific edition (i.e. between OEM pro and retail pro, or between OEM ultimate and retail ultimate).

sevenforums.com





Windows 8 OEM is a whole different ballgame.

License agreement for the transfer of a Windows 8 license
http://personaluselicense.windows.com/en-US/default.aspx
 

nyxanna

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Well thanks for the replies. I didn't know that there is a difference when you get Windows together with your PC.

I still have a few questions. Is this product transferable to other motherboards? Will I be able to replace the motherboard in the future without getting errors?
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Microsoft-Windows-Standard-WN7-00403-English/dp/B009HI2W66/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1380588758&sr=8-3&keywords=windows+8

Is there any big difference between Windows 8 Standard and Pro? I'm not planning on having more than 16 GB RAM and all I care about is performance.
 

Dark Lord of Tech

Speedy Gonzales
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You will be fine without pro.

Yes that can be transferred to another computer when you are done using this one , but only one computer at a time.With Windows 8 OEM you can make all the hardware changes you want including the motherboard.
 

vancedecker

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"OEM versions of Windows 7 are identical to Full License Retail versions except for the following:"

No.

First of all, I like the added touch of the official Windows logo in the response, however, I would like to point out that your answer is superficial at best.



The MAIN difference (...ignoring the legal garbage posted, as our current legal system is based upon a predatory ethical foundation...let the buyer beware...) is best illustrated by what happens when things go wrong.

For instance, your copy of windows and its integrity cannot be assured. Hidden Partitions WITHOUT the benefit of hardware based security (as with Lenovo systems) are inherently insecure. Acer will tell you to create "Factory Restore Disks" as soon as you boot your computer for the first time, and most rational consumers assume that this will act as their 'copy' of Windows...

Unfortunately, you will quickly learn that these "Factory Restore Disks" do not operate the same way as "System Restore Disks" which you would be able to create had Acer given you a geniune Windows copy instead of the garbage copy placed in the "hidden" PQ_SERVICE partition. Should you need the ability to create such a disk, Acer will gladly offer you the ability to purchase them for a fee.

I will give Acer the benefit of the doubt and attribute this to primarily incompetence in large corporate environments, rather than an intentional way to extract more money from desperate consumers.

---

Now with that said. You should have a sticker on your computer

Windows does not disclose the conditions under which a Geniune copy is slated to be checked by the Software Gestapo, but such things as:

- Stopping Idiotic DAILY Checks of Windows Geniune Certification with a firewall
- Upgrading your system to contain a more secure operating system
- Modifying the System Reserved Partition or Boot block
- Upgrading/Flashing your systems BIOS
- etc...


All of these things can trigger a Security Check by the Microsoft Police, which will require you to find your serial number. You should have a sticker on your computer or a manual with a sticker on it.

I personally have not had a problem having to re-certify my copy, however I do resent the need to do this, and had the numbers on my own sticker been a little more worn out then I would have been very mad, as I would not have been able to...

I know this is an old thread, but I wanted to post this info for posterity...
 

Jean Brits

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I recently installed a new graphics card and got the windows isnt genuine message right after. Since I didn't change the motherboard it should still consider it the same pc so why am I getting this error now only after installing my graphics card?
 

yellsalott

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I don't have an answer here because I have the same problem: I got Windows 7 home premium 64 bit on my pc (Pre installed and the key for it was and still is Valid. I upgraded to professional in December of 2010.

There have been at least 3 times where after the upgrade- and the upgrade key was bought directly from Microsoft's website, so it is legit- 3 times now, including today, where for some damn reason, my copy is suddenly no longer genuine.

I eneded up doing the 99 dollar 30 day customer service bit from Microsoft today, and after 5 hours worth of remote attemps at fixing my system, no luck, still F***ED up. So tomorrow, I get to wait for a level 2 tech to try. (I have been told if they can't fix it, then I get a refund.)

THIS IS WHAT I'VE HAD TO DO IN THE PAST TO FIX THIS PROBLEM.........AND IT SUCKS: I HAVE TO RE-INSTALL WINDOWS 7 HOME PREMIUM, ACTIVATE IT, THEN RUN MY UPGRADE KEY AND ACTIVATE THAT, AND I WILL ONCE AGAIN HAVE A GENUINE COPY OF WINDOWS 7 PRO.

NOW, WHILE I AM HAPPY THAT ALL THE PROGRAMS I HAVE ON THE DISK WILL SHOW UP IN A FOLDER CALLED WINDOWS OLD, IT'S STILL A PAIN, AND I WILL BET ANYTHING THAT ITS A STUPID DRIVER INCOMPATIBILITY. (LIKE THE 1ST BIOSHOCK GAME. IF YOU INSTALL SP1, YOU CAN'T PLAY THE GAME ANYMORE.)

SO IF ANYONE HAS A SOLUTION THAT WILL KEEP THE COPY GENUINE, LET ME KNOW. FOR THE MOMENT, I'VE BEEN USING MICROSOFT SECURITY ESSENTIALS BECAUSE OF BEING ON A TIGHT BUDGET & SOMETHING OBVIOUSLY BLEW THROUGH THAT PROGRAM TO JACK MY SYSTEM. THE WIFE SAYS I SHOULD HAVE RENEWED MY NORTON 360 ACCOUNT, BUT I'M SEEING POSTS FROM FOLKS WHO DO HAVE NORTON, AND THEY ALSO HAVE THE SAME DAMN PROBLEM WITH THEIR COPIES NO LONGER GENUINE.
 

vancedecker

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Ok, I can't speak to some of your other issues, because they are different and separate issues. You should make a separate post for those.

but you might try this for the Windows Genuine Advantage crap:

http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/wga_remover.html

The site is respectable, but I have no idea if this works or not.

Sorry another legitimate Microsoft customer is getting screwed while various hackers/pirates have long since gotten around all this BS and never paid for anything. I guess this is your life lesson, sometimes doing the "right" thing in life is the wrong thing and ends up screwing you in the end. It's a life lesson I've had to learn myself many times.

omg...i just realized this response is 2 years old....oh well, hopefully he can afford a mac by now
 
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