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Solved!

Activation after re-install of Windows

HP Recommended
Elite 8300 SFF
Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit)

Hi - about 18 months ago we (a charity) bought this machine which came pre-installed with Windows 7 (I think with an upgrade option to 10 or it may have been the other way around). The project we were running required Linux so we over-wrote it. Now that project is finished we would like to return it to Windows and I have installed the OS  but can't activate it. There is no licence key sticker. How can this be done or do we need to purchase a new licence?

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Hi:

 

Some of those models came with W8 from HP and if it did, there should be a W8 product key in the BIOS.

 

Run the free utility that I zipped up and attached below to see if it reports a W8 product key and a version of W8 the key is good for in the BIOS.

 

If it does, the report of the version of Windows would look something like this...this is my W8.1 Pro showkey plus report.

 

OEM Edition: Win 8.1 RTM Professional OEM:DM

 

If you have such a thing, I can give you a way to install W8.1 for free by using the W8 product key in the BIOS.

 

You would not be able to activate W7 with a W8 product key, but you may be able to activate W10 by using the W8 product key if one exists in the BIOS.

 

You can do that in the PC settings menu.

 

 

 

 

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Hi -thanks for the response. I tried the program that you suggested and it returned a key but, perhaps unfortunately, it said Windows 7 OEM marker present in firmware. The key provided didn't work in W10 with an error 0x803fa067. I am guessing that we are out of luck?

 

I have since discovered that they key it gave me was the default W10 key.

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You're very welcome.

 

It appears that your PC originally came with W7 Pro.

 

Later in 2012 when W8 came out, some 8300 Elite's had W8 product keys.

 

What I recommend you do is to call HP support in the UK.

 

Call the number listed for Computing products for Business, and see if they will send you a set of W7 Pro recovery disks for your model.

 

https://www8.hp.com/uk/en/contact-hp/phone-assist.html

 

Once you have W7 pro installed, you can then try to get the free upgrade to W10 by reading the info at the link below.

 

https://www.zdnet.com/article/heres-how-you-can-still-get-a-free-windows-10-upgrade/

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Thanks - a job for tomorrow.

 

They were still there today. Unfortunately the model is too old for that option. It seems it was refurbished when we bought it and it was manufactured in 2014 so out of luck for that option. They guy did say however that, as a charity, it would be worth us contacting Microsoft as they could probably get us a licence very cheaply so that is the next option to pursue.

 

Thanks for your help.

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