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Installing a genuine copy of windows over an illegal copy


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#1
grandadrick

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Merry Christmas all. Seems my computer has an illegal copy of windows XP PRO SP2. I have a genuine copy of windows XP PRO 2002. Can I insall it without losing all my data and settings? I am 78 years old so please take it slow and keep it simple. Thanks. grandadrick.
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#2
The Skeptic

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You can probably perform a repair installation with the new disk and product key (You can use the link in my signature below for a link to G2G xp repair guide).

I emphasis the probably because according to your description you have two different versions of xp: The installed one is SP-2 and the legal one is without sp-2. Now, it depends on when SP-2 was installed. If it was part of the illegal installation then I doubt if the repair will succeed with the legal disk, which is an older version. If the SP-2 was downloaded as an update by Windows Updates then you will probably succeed but SP-2 will be lost with all other Windows Updates, and you will have to download them all again (The updates will be lost anyway. SP-2 will be lost only if it was downloaded as an update).

To cut a long story short, you can try the repair. If the two versions are not compatible then you will not be able to do this.

Please note: XP repair is supposed to leave your data intact. However, it's a serious operation and I would recommend a backup just to be on the safe side. Second, you will loose windows updates and in some cases some hardware drivers. Thierd, The operation does not always succeed and sometimes end with a crippled operating system.
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#3
Ztruker

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You may be able to just replace the product key, see here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/328874
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#4
grandadrick

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You may be able to just replace the product key, see here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/328874


Thanks. I read the windows blurb and it is not suitable in my case, but it was good of you to take the trouble to contact me. Merry Christmas to you and yours.
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#5
grandadrick

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You can probably perform a repair installation with the new disk and product key (You can use the link in my signature below for a link to G2G xp repair guide).

I emphasis the probably because according to your description you have two different versions of xp: The installed one is SP-2 and the legal one is without sp-2. Now, it depends on when SP-2 was installed. If it was part of the illegal installation then I doubt if the repair will succeed with the legal disk, which is an older version. If the SP-2 was downloaded as an update by Windows Updates then you will probably succeed but SP-2 will be lost with all other Windows Updates, and you will have to download them all again (The updates will be lost anyway. SP-2 will be lost only if it was downloaded as an update).

To cut a long story short, you can try the repair. If the two versions are not compatible then you will not be able to do this.

Please note: XP repair is supposed to leave your data intact. However, it's a serious operation and I would recommend a backup just to be on the safe side. Second, you will loose windows updates and in some cases some hardware drivers. Thierd, The operation does not always succeed and sometimes end with a crippled operating system.



I might hang on and see if there are any more posts. I will do as you say if there is not a safer method, so all you clever people out there, the ball is in your court. I am just the ball-boy. :)
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#6
Ztruker

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Before doing anything, give this one a try: Change the Serial in Windows XP. Ignore the part about SP1, as this applies to SP1 or SP2.

If no joy, call Microsoft and ask them to help. They are good about folks replacing illegal copies of XP with legal ones and are usually very helpful. I know they were for me. They may be able to tell you how to simply replace the product key (as I mentioned). If not, you only have two options.

Repair install as The Skeptic suggested. If your system is in good shape and does not have any malware or hardware problems then it will work. Always best to backup your personal data first just in case. Actually, you should backup your data no matter what as it's only a matter of time before something will fail in the normal course of using a computer.

Clean install - this wipes out everything and you start with a clean, formatted hard drive.
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#7
grandadrick

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Before doing anything, give this one a try: Change the Serial in Windows XP. Ignore the part about SP1, as this applies to SP1 or SP2.

If no joy, call Microsoft and ask them to help. They are good about folks replacing illegal copies of XP with legal ones and are usually very helpful. I know they were for me. They may be able to tell you how to simply replace the product key (as I mentioned). If not, you only have two options.

Repair install as The Skeptic suggested. If your system is in good shape and does not have any malware or hardware problems then it will work. Always best to backup your personal data first just in case. Actually, you should backup your data no matter what as it's only a matter of time before something will fail in the normal course of using a computer.

Clean install - this wipes out everything and you start with a clean, formatted hard drive.


My copy of windows 2002 is an OEM version. I should have said so on my first post but it did not seem important at the time. Does this change thing?. Thanks.
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#8
Ztruker

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I don't know, try it and see if it works. If not, call MS and they will help you. They really are very good when it comes to getting rid of pirated software.
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