how to determine windows xp version from recovery console

I have just installed a new motherboard for one that had failed..I am trying to determine which XP to run a repair installation for, Pro or Home. There is no COA sticker on the case. Is there a way to extract the necessary info from recovery console or by hooking up the hard drive as a slave?
Who is Participating?
Alex AppletonBusiness Technology AnalystCommented:
You will also need to keep in mind if the version is VLK, OEM or Retail.  It really matters.

Best way I know to determine is to plug the drive into a functioning computer as a slave drive and boot into Windows.  If you can read the drive in Windows run a utility called produkey (

It will scan all hard drives attached to the computer for product keys.  
quick and easy way to tell home from Pro, look at the boot.ini file in the root. (c:\boot.ini)   The text of the file will have "Windows XP Professional" or "Windows XP Home"

atf3docAuthor Commented:
That Nirsoft product key is great!! I have been looking for something like that for years. Reading the slave drive as well as primary. SWEEET!
Thanks to both of you for the excellent help!
Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.

All Courses

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.