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System Software

Discussion in 'A+' started by rockstar007, Jul 22, 2008.

  1. rockstar007

    rockstar007 Bit Poster

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    HI i am currently self studying for the A+ essentials and have a question regarding system cd. If i reformat a hard drive and have lost my copy of my system software but still have the product key can i use another cd of the same software with this product key or is the product key cd specific ( am talking about Microsoft xp)?

    Thanks
    Dave
     
  2. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    Well you shouldn't have a copy of it as it's illegal.

    You should have a new OS disk with a new key.
     
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  3. UKDarkstar
    Honorary Member

    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    No the cd is not linked to the individual product key BUT you may find that the cd you use needs to match the generic type for the key.

    e.g. if you have a key for Xp Pro SP1 you may find that using a CD that is Xp Pro SP2 doesn't work.

    There are also differences with oem (original equipment manufacturer) disks, retail boxed products and disks supplied under volume lic arrangements. You *may* be able to get a replacement CD from Microsoft.
     
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  4. rockstar007

    rockstar007 Bit Poster

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    Ok thanks i can see your point.

    What i don't understand is if i say put my laptop into a shop to be repaired and they said the hard drive need to be reformatted because of viruses lets say. Would they require my original cd to load the OS?

    thanks
    dave
     
  5. UKDarkstar
    Honorary Member

    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    They *may* do

    Strictly speaking - yes, but many will have disks they can use. It will also depend if the laptop was a custom build or a brannded make. In the case of the latter, many do not supply disks any more but there may be a small partition only accessible on boot-up that contains images for the restore disks. Usually in the small print that came with it you'll find a recommendation that you should create the restore cd's.

    In addition, remember that restore cd's will also have drivers preloaded whereas a MS cd of Xp will not, in which case you will need drivers for the component parts.
     
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  6. rockstar007

    rockstar007 Bit Poster

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    OK thanks for helping with that. i think i understand. The reason for the question was that i was trying to clean a friends laptop which is infested with viruses and want to reformat but they have lost the MS cd that came with it and can't find a system cd either.
     
  7. UKDarkstar
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    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    What make/model of laptop is it and how old ?
     
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  8. hbroomhall

    hbroomhall Petabyte Poster Gold Member

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    With laptops normally the only method of easily getting the OS reinstalled is with the manufacturer's restore CDs (or restore partition). If you use a 'standard' CD then you will have a lot of work finding drivers, and in some cases some parts of the machine will not get drivers at all.

    Some repair workshops have a whole lots of copies of such recovery CDs so as to be able to give a good service. Crappier workshops just stick on a generic OS and hope the customer doesn't notice.

    Harry.
     
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  9. rockstar007

    rockstar007 Bit Poster

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    Its is a Dell Inspiron 630m.

    The product key is on the bottom of the laptop and it has windows media centre and is about 4 years old. There is also a dell service tag on the bottom of the laptop.

    dave
     
  10. UKDarkstar
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    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    If they bought it from Dell then it might well be worthwhile them contacting them, quoting the service tag number and they may be able to get a replacement. Also, they should have some cd's with drivers and progs that were on the laptop - usually coloured blue from memory.
     
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  11. JonGlory

    JonGlory Byte Poster

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    You can make your own windows xp install disc if the original installation has an i386 folder present. I've done it before.
     
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  12. rockstar007

    rockstar007 Bit Poster

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    thanks for all the advice will try the and see what works!
     
  13. greenbrucelee
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    If you go to the dell support web-site, type in the service tag number and you can get all the drivers. You might also be able to download OS software to do a reinstall.
     
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  14. Gingerdave

    Gingerdave Megabyte Poster

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    By the terms of the license agreement you can install the OS using any Valid media (not a Volume license disk or ones with Service packs on). MS License that machine to use their software. Therefor if your local pc shop has the media and the license sticker on your dell is still readable that wont be an issue.

    The drivers will be so I advise that you or they follow the steps as laid out above and either burn the relievent drivers to a disk or copy them to a pen drive.

    Also there is a free app called Driver Magician which will rip out of the os all the drivers that do not come with the os as standard, this may also help you out of a hole.

    Good Luck.
     
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  15. UKDarkstar
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    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    Also bear in mind that the "proper" Dell disk will not require a product activation.

    I have Dell restore cd's in my workshop but not a media centre edition I'm afraid. Easiest thing is just to ring them - it's not a hassle
     
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  16. JonGlory

    JonGlory Byte Poster

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    I doubt dell will give you a disc, i know when i worked there we were told not to send out OS software, but sometimes we did :biggrin
     
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  17. UKDarkstar
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    UKDarkstar Terabyte Poster

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    Google turns up numerous cases where a replacement cd has been supplied. There is a nominal cost but it's worth it.
     
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  18. JonGlory

    JonGlory Byte Poster

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    As i said, dell may give him a disc, it really depends on the support agent, and how much he can be bothered convincing his manager.
     
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  19. Crito

    Crito Banned

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    The keys are different for OEM vs. retail and for each different edition. So you'll need an OEM copy of XP MCE 2005, then your key should work.
     
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