Windows XP Media - installation disk

  jeano 19:55 03 Jul 2008

A little less than a year ago I purchased an Acer laptop with OS preinstalled. I did make a restore CD immdediately but recently the laptop picked up a virus which I could not get rid of. laptop would not boot in safemode and hung at AGP.sys. Before I could try the restore disk I had created it died completely and had to be sent back to Acer. What I would have done with no trepidation, had I been able to, is to use a windows install disk and reformat the drive and reinstall windows. I clearly have a licenced copy of the OS but no install disk (I don't even know how to find out the licence key.) Is there a way to acquire a disk without paying again for the licence? With all of the desktops I have had I have done a complete reinstall to get rid of trash, speed up the system etc. and although it is time consuming has usually been beneficial particulary in terms of creating a clean register. Why do they do not spend a few pence on a disk when you have spent hundreds of pounds - over £500 in this case - for the hardware?

  PA28 22:10 03 Jul 2008

It's the licence key that you need - with that you can borrow a genuine XP(?) master disk and install entering your key when prompted. Did your retailer not place a sticker bearing the key on the underside, or supply you with a manual with the sticker attached? Would your supplier possibly hold this information on record as the computer is presumably still under warranty?

Without that key you do not have a licensed OS as the key is your licence. You may need to buy a new copy.

  jeano 22:24 03 Jul 2008

I do note have the laptop to examine at the moment to see if there is a licence key sticker but I have looked previously and to my knowledge the only sticker I have is a generic one which does not show a specific key. I know that there is downloadable software that can identify the key for you but I haven't used one of these as the installation was probably a mirror image which may give me duff info about the licence key. If I could have borrowed a proper CD I would have but no one I know has a non OEM CD. Back to the original question - I think I should be able to source this for minimum cost as I have already paid for a licence. I would like one for the future. Anyone know how this works?

  Strawballs 22:28 03 Jul 2008

On Laptops the product key can sometimes be found under the battery.

  Quiet Life 22:34 03 Jul 2008

My Acer Aspire notebook has the Widows Media Center key stuck underneath.

  jeano 23:24 03 Jul 2008

OK - thanks for responses. When I get the laptop back I will endeavour to locate any licence key label that may be hidden away somewhere. Assuming I can find it - anyone any experience of getting an install disk for a licence they have already paid for?

  jeano 23:31 03 Jul 2008

More info: I already have a kosher install disk for Windows XP professional but this as this is not the same as Windows XP Home Media Edition I did not try it. I do have, however, a licence key that goes with it as the PC in question has long gone to the graveyard. In desperation could I have used this on the laptop or do I need an XP Media edition? (what is the difference anyway between XP Professional and Home Media?) and how would I stand using a old (dead machine desktop) licence key with a fairly new laptop?

  lotvic 00:11 04 Jul 2008

You probably have the Acer OEM OS licence product key. It would likely have been pre-activated with Microsoft before you took delivery.

If you use software to find out the key it cannot give you 'duff' information - it can only give you the key that is there and in use. This is a good free one SIW click here look under Secrets for your Windows Key.

In addition to being able to make your own restore (to factory fresh) CD I believe that Acer laptops have a Recovery partition on the Hard drive accessed by pressing Alt F10 at boot up to start the PQServices recovery. This gives the option of restoring to 'factory fresh' (so no need to look for and install additional drivers for the motherboard and hardware etc - notoriously difficult for Acer laptops I am led to believe)

List of Acer Laptop Service Manuals available to download from click here
( also do it yourself Laptop Troubleshoot and Repair Help )

  ronalddonald 00:33 04 Jul 2008

According to what you have written, Im not sure, you will be able to lad windows xp form a disc so long as you have the license number, but im not sure if the drivers wil be loaded as well.

What ive foundd with toshiba and acer is that they seem to have the driverswith the operating disc they supply or when you have to make a copy of the restore. Even though you may be able to load up windows xp with the a license thers no guratee the drivers willl work

  jeano 17:55 04 Jul 2008

Have received a letter from Acer support asked or £69.99 to carry out software recovery as they have identified that Windows is corrupt (I knew that). However they also say that the reason it died completed is that the fan and thermal module were choked with dust. So it looks as if I could have sorted this myself if the inital call to Acer had suggested that I clean it out (need to find out how to do this for the future). I an unable to speak to them about this until Monday as they are only open 9-5.30 Mon to Fri but it also states that if I don't cough up the £69.99 I will need to send them £41.13 for it to be returned unrepaired. So much for Warranty!

  PA28 13:24 05 Jul 2008

If you do decide to have it repaired (and it sounds like it may have had a bit of a hard life) then do make sure that you get that all important key number in case you need it again in the future.

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