Help with Vista Activiation

  legendcrest 14:26 22 Apr 2008

i have an acer aspire 5315 laptop which i formatted when its response time was becoming too slow.I cant seem to see the cd disk that came with it but i have the activation key.After formatting it,the activation key is not working and i need to activate it.How can i go about it

  Lee.C 14:45 22 Apr 2008

Just to clarify.... If you don't have the original disc, how did you get to the stage where it asks for an activation code?

  legendcrest 14:58 22 Apr 2008

Had another Cd,but when i use the activation code that came with the CD,still telling me to activate

  ventanas 15:35 22 Apr 2008

I assume the key you are using is that found on the sticker on the underside of the machine. If you are using the one for the previous installation it will not work, as that will be the OEM key supplied to Acer by Microsoft. But in any event Acer must have supplied a means of recovering the system, either by way of a dvd, or a partition on the hdd containing the necessary files. From what you say it did come with a dvd. I suggest that you make every effort to find it, or contact Acer to see if a replacement is available. If the other CD and its code have already been used on another machine it's very likely it won't activate, or validate for that matter.

  Lee.C 16:35 22 Apr 2008

Yep.. Basically what Ventanas said.

All the big pc companies (Acer, Dell, HP etc) have their own very slightly modified version of the Windows installation. If the activation code and installation disc don't match, it's not going to like it.

If you have no luck finding the original disc or getting Acer to send you a new one......

1. Are you sure there's not a hidden back up partition on the harddrive? I'm sure Acer pc's usually have one which can be accessed by pressing a certain function key during bootup.

2. If you know anyone else with an Acer computer. You may find that their disc works even if it's a different model.

3. You can skip activation during Vista's installation and it'll carry on normally. You'll then be nagged for 30 days until you do activate it.
When you do this, it'll give a phone number to contact Microsoft. If you explain the situation (put in a good sob story), you may get lucky and they'll activate it for you.

4. Worst case scenario is that you'll have to buy a new copy of Vista. Premium costs around £60 for an OEM license.

  legendcrest 17:42 22 Apr 2008

Do u know the key function so that i can try and see if i can access it and what to likely do

  Lee.C 19:02 22 Apr 2008

According to this...
click here

it should be Alt+F10 just after booting up.

What I can't tell though is if this is something programmed into the bios or if it was something added to the original Windows installation. If it's the later, I don't think it's going to work now that the main partition has been formatted.

  ventanas 09:07 23 Apr 2008

Having re-read your original post I'm wondering how you actually managed to format the disc without a Vista dvd, unless you used the one you appear to have "borrowed." If this was not for your make/model of PC then you have probably screwed things up for reinstalling from any Acer dvd. Your best bet is to talk to Acer and tell them exactly what you have done. They may be sympathetic, but you may have also invalidated any warranty by using another disc. It's possible that installation files on the hdd have been removed by the format, you may need to replace the hdd, or have Acer replace them. Or buy a new copy of Vista. You cannot use OEM as suggested because you are not a system builder, therefore this route will be expensive.
You will also need all the drivers particular to your machine. Probably available from the Acer web site.
As I said your best bet is to talk to Acer and take it from there. Hopefully they may have ways of replacing the OEM licence, but it may mean returning the machine to them, and they will probably make a charge.
Microsoft will probably state that they are unable to help as the installation is OEM and any support will come from the vendor (Acer).

  Lee.C 13:06 23 Apr 2008

"Or buy a new copy of Vista. You cannot use OEM as suggested because you are not a system builder, therefore this route will be expensive."

I agree that checking with Acer first is the best route, but if they can't help, or it gets too expensive, there's nothing stopping you getting an OEM disc.
Assuming you're in the UK, it's no more difficult to purchase an OEM license than it is a retail one.

click here

click here

Alternatively if anyone in your household is a student (not that they check) you could get the retail upgrade disc for a similar price and then you'd have full Microsoft support...

click here

There's a nice little workaround to get it installed on an empty drive (type 'vista upgrade' in Google).

  ventanas 13:47 23 Apr 2008

Not so. Both sites are wrong
The option to sell OEM with an item of hardware was withdrawn by Microsoft back in 2005. Sites selling this way are selling illegal copies. Unless you are a system builder you cannot legally install a copy of Vista OEM, as I have already said. The rules of this forum forbid any advice on how to infringe licensing law. Please be aware of this.
By the way software licensing law is what I do.

  Lee.C 15:33 23 Apr 2008

I've gone through the OEM license and can't find anything that says this can't be done legally. But then software licensing law is not what I do so maybe I missed something.

“System builder” means an original equipment
manufacturer, an assembler, refurbisher, or pre-installer of software on computer systems.

An everyday user with an empty hard drive and a copy of OEM Windows sounds like a 'pre installer of software' to me.

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