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Win 7 Activation Catch-22


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Tom Plachecki

Tom Plachecki

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I think this is a story of Win 7 Starter gone horribly wrong. Perhaps someone on GtG can help me with a happy ending.

I need a non-work computer to use while on extended business travel and my daughter said I could use here netbook, which runs Win 7 Starter. However, she said it was running very slow (even slower than normal for a netbook). I started by uninstalling a bunch of programs that aren't needed. I just need a word processor and an internet browser.

During this process, I noticed that it wasn't doing any Windows Updates for the last year and I spent many hours trying to fix that problem and even trying to manually load Win 7 SP1 update. No luck. So, I extracted the Win 7 Starter product key, borrowed a USB DVD Drive and installed a fresh copy of Win 7 Starter SP1. All good, except that it will NOT activate using the product key I extracted. I get an 0xC004E003 error.

As if that wasn't bad enough, I tried purchasing a Win 7 Anytime Upgrade key for Home Premium and it validates, but it won't update because, and you guessed it, the current Win 7 Starter is not activated.

Windows Premium Services will fix this for $99. That plus the anytime update and I could buy a new Chromebook...

BTW, I'm now on the business travel and I don't have access to the USB DVD drive.

Can you guys help?
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