Windows licence for second-hand PC

  jz 22:58 05 Jan 2006

If I buy a second-hand PC with Windows XP installed, and it has a Windows XP certificate of authenticity sticker stuck to the case with the product key, is this the licence? In other words, if this is the only thing I have, is the software considered to be legit? Or do I also need some other printed documentation and/or the OEM CD?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 23:04 05 Jan 2006

No all you need is the COA sticker on the case.

This is the license.

However if the machine comes with XP pre installed you really need some method of restoring it to its factory settings. Ask if there are any restore disks with the PC

Some big manufactures do not give out restore disks

so best option is to make a copy of the drive with something like Acronis true image.

  jz 23:26 05 Jan 2006

Thanks Fruit Bat.

Since the sticker indicates that it's legit, is there any legal problem with me borrowing someone else's XP home OEM disk, installing XP from it on my PC but using the product key on my PC's case sticker?

  DieSse 23:38 05 Jan 2006

*is there any legal problem with me borrowing someone else's XP home OEM disk*

There may be a technical problem - not all keys will work with all versions of XP.

You should not be able to buy a PC with the operating system installed UNLESS it is accompanied by ALL the CDs and documentation (Manuals/etc) which were originally supplied with it.

So it depends somewhat on the make of the PC and how it was originally supplied.

  jz 00:08 06 Jan 2006

It's a Dell, and it came with no manuals or CDs. It has XP installed, but I'd like to re-format the hard disk and re-install XP.

I know someone else with a different Dell model which came with XP. Maybe if I use this disk, there won't be a problem, but if I use a disk for a different PC manufacturer, there would be a problem?

  DieSse 00:14 06 Jan 2006

You'll probably not find out unless you try it. It should have come with manuals and CDs at least as far as Windows and other MS software is concerned (if there were any in the first place - I know Dell used to supply them). Not to do so is not a legal transfer of the licence.

  DieSse 00:18 06 Jan 2006

As a for instance, XP SP1 codes will almost certainly not work with an XP SP2 CD. And XP Home licence codes will nnot work with XP Pro.

You don't really want to find out it doesn't work after you've formatted the HD - then you really will have a problem!

I suggest you approach whoever sold it to you with a view to recovering any CDs and manuals - After all they won't be any further use to the vendor (legally).

  jz 09:08 06 Jan 2006

Thanks everyone for your help!

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