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  • Am I the last one to the party that didn’t understand this Microsoft rule?

    Home » Forums » AskWoody support » Windows » Am I the last one to the party that didn’t understand this Microsoft rule?


    PC issues that required multiple parts to be replaced which required a reinstallation of software including Windows 10 from the OEM disc.

    Earlier this year I bought the Windows Pro 10 upgrade directly from Microsoft. I couldn’t find the D/L link or the product key so I reached out to MS. I was told that I couldn’t reinstall Pro because the repairs were deemed by the software to it becoming a “new” machine. The upgrade I D/L was tied to the original machine. I pleaded with them that it was the same machine but with parts replaced. Sorry, it is viewed as a new machine and/or a transfer.

    Now here is the kick in the pants: If I had purchased the retail version of Pro 10, I was told **that** could be reinstalled but not the version D/L directly from MS. When I queried why anyone would buy software from MS and not retail, the chat ended.

    Just wanted to warn others in case I wasn’t the only person left that didn’t know their polilcy.

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    • #2404964

      Even in the 7 era there was a magical number of parts that could change and it wouldn’t trigger reactivation. Change two items, and it wouldn’t hiccup.  Change a major item like the motherboard and it would freak.  But even then I personally had situations where I’d change major parts and it wouldn’t kick a reactivation or it would reactivate online without a problem.

      Did you try installing it without a key to see if it would magically reactivate?

      Susan Bradley Patch Lady

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2406103

        Thanks all. interestingly, I couldn’t reinstall it without activation because I physically didn’t have it on my hard drive. When I upgraded directly through MS, it was downloaded, installed and activated exactly the way MS installs patches– in the background. Lesson learned. Any and all software I buy from now on, I will ask particulars if it can be reinstalled and/or moved to a different pc.

    • #2405016

      Hope Susan’s suggestion works — but for those like me who have a 1-PC Lifetime License …. in reviewing my $40 (2019) Pro Upgrade purchase via a PCWorld “special” offer I read that the 1-PC Lifetime license means I can move it to Another Computer – BUTW10 MUST be Uninstalled FIRST from Computer #1. So, a (ie) Motherboard change surely requires W10 UNinstall FIRST, too … Fail to do THAT and we apparently join Dfromel in the MS protest line.  I agree that Buying from MS would suggest you’re OK in Any situation – which we now see sadly isn’t true.

      In the spirit of “What’s in your wallet?”, Do you know your License’s “special conditions” for parts/computer transfer?

      W10 Pro 21H2 / Hm-Stdnt Ofce '16 C2R / HP Envy Desktop-Ethernet/ 12 GB / 256G SSD + 1 TB HDD / GP=2 + FtrU=Semi-Annual + Feature Defer = 1 + QU=0

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2405031

      To find out the particulars of your Windows license, open a Command Prompt and type

      slmgr /dlv

      and hit Enter.  You’ll get this (I’ve blacked out the pertinent information)


      Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
      We all have our own reasons for doing the things that we do. We don't all have to do the same things.

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