We have HP EliteBook 820 G3 laptops and I need to create clean Windows 7 pro installation using the shipped OEM SLP - key. The key I don't actually have or the certificates for it as what I understood is the practice. Nevertheless I need to create clean Windows 7 pro installation for the machine and still be able to activate the windows with OEM invisible key shipped with the machine. I don't want any drivers or HP preinstalled software, updates, configurations or HP recovery partitions, or any such things.
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I use almost the same computer even at the moment.
I am unable to answer 100% of your question but I could give you some ideas that may help.
Discaimer: just to mention that I am not sure these options are officially supported by HP as if the machine comes with Win preinstalled, this is the officially supported option. The preinstalled options can be easier first step for companies to upgrade to Volume Licenceing from Microsoft as companies are required to have OEM lic prior to purchasing a VL contract.
There are 2 types of activation options based on keys:
OEM SLP: This key comes pre-installed in Windows, when it comes from the Factory. This key is geared to work with the special instructions found only on that Manufacturer's computer hardware. So when Windows was installed using the OEM SLP key (at the factory) Windows 7 looks at the motherboard and sees the special instructions and Self-Activates. (that's why you did not need to Activate your computer after you brought it home)
COA SLP: This is the Product key that you see on the sticker on the side or inside the battery compartment of your computer. It is a valid product key, but should only be used in limited situations (such as if the OEM SLP key stops self-activating for whatever reason). The key must be entered/changed from the OEM SLP one. It should be activated by phone call method to Microsoft. Note: All manufacturers that use the OEM SLP system are required by contract to include a Certificate of Authenticity (COA) sticker, that has a COA SLP key, on the computer.
HP does the same. HP business computers including these Elibooks do have COE stickers. For this model they are included below the battery. You need open the downside of the notebook, remove the battery to see the sticker for Windows 7.
Win 8 and 10 are another story.
For the new HDD to active you can use the key in the COA sticker or using the HP Recovery media created from every machine but it includes drivers, software,etc. The Windows installation should be OEM type for the COA sticker to work.
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