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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I must say, I am the dumbest computer geek on the face of the earth.

I am trying to reformat my old, crappy laptop. I remember to get the Product-Key before formatting. Now I still have it.

But heres the big noob mistake. :rolleyes:

I am not using the disk that was originally used to install windows xp, instead my brother's disk from his *relatively* new computer. Ergo, Cd-Key doesn't work on it.

Ohh, I am so stupid. And there's pretty much no way to get the original disk seeing this is a very old laptop and originally came with Windows ME. My sister did the OOOOLLLLLDDDD install. I'm going to ask her where the old CD is but most likely it's already gone.

Is there any way to use my old, original key? Absolutely any? Or must I buy a new copy of Windows? If so I'm just going to trash the old laptop, not worth paying $100 for another install when Vista's right around the corner and the laptop sucks anyways. :mad: But now, it doesn't just suck, but it's a brick. Oh, I never should have formatted. :jail:
 

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Do the windows discs have the manufacturer's label on them? If so, I can't help you further. If you have the gold, original XP CDs, then it might be that you are trying to use a XP Home key with a XP Pro CD - which could explain the problem you are experiencing. Try a Home CD.

I would also suggest zeroing the drive before installing XP.
 

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Well, I think you understand the issue very well. If you have a product key for one type of XP, let's say an OEM version, and you are installing with a disk from another version, say Full Retail Version, then the product key will not work. This is why you need the exact version that the product key fits. Although it does not necessarily have to be the exact same physical disk, it does have be the same version.
 

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You probably do want to reformat, Asda. Just cough up $160 and say you're a student. When you just do an update from ME to XP, and almost always ends up nasty anyway. Alternately, you could always give Linux a try.

Regards,

Brandon
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, I think you understand the issue very well. If you have a product key for one type of XP, let's say an OEM version, and you are installing with a disk from another version, say Full Retail Version, then the product key will not work. This is why you need the exact version that the product key fits. Although it does not necessarily have to be the exact same physical disk, it does have be the same version.
Oh, I thought I needed the exact physical disk, phew that helps alot.

I'll see if I can find any regular non-OEM disks, thanks so far guys.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Oh crud, no wonder. I was using a gold disk :( I'll ask my bro if we have any regular retail Home ones, we might.
 

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Gold is OK - it's the type of disc that matters.

I only mentioned gold to distinguish it from a manufacturer's copy of windows XP.

Gold XP discs come in: OEM (generic), Upgrade and Retail.

OEM discs that are specific to one manufacturer are usually finished in their own colours, and when installed they can be traced to that manufacturer by Microsoft during the online update process.

A Home key with a gold Home disc should be OK.

I hope this helps rather than confuses.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
It does help, but I'm using a Home key with a gold Home disk, and it's not working. Don't worry, it doesn't confuse me though.

Oh wait, it might be an OEM disk or upgrade, (well I really dunno, going to turn off the computer and grab the disk)

Well it says it comes with SP2 so it might be an upgrade... hm..
Wait nope. it just says "For distribution with a new PC only. For product support, contact the manufacturer of your PC."

:(

Is there any way to tell what the usable version is by the CD-Key?
 
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