Windows OEM download

Posted on 2009-12-22
Last Modified: 2012-05-08

As most laptops come with an OEM licence key, but not with only with a restore partation instead of a regular OS installation CD, i would like to ask if there is the possibility to legally download a Vista OEM ISO?. The reason is that the recovery partiton was deleted.
Question by:img-admin
    LVL 17

    Expert Comment

    As far as I know, you can't download OEM version as it should came with manufacturer's hardware.
    I know that you're able to restore recovery partition on Lenovo laptops. Which hardware do you have?
    LVL 6

    Expert Comment

    Most manafacturers will ship you a replacement OEM disk if you have lost that.
    LVL 40

    Expert Comment

    by:Jackie Man
    You need to ask the manufacturer of the laptop to order a Vista recovery DVD to restore back to factory status. OEM means Microsoft will not help you by any means and they will only ask you to go back to the manufacturer for help. For details, please have a look of the URL below.


    LVL 40

    Expert Comment

    by:Jackie Man
    For Vista, all manufacturers will NOT ship you a Vista Setup DVD, they will only send you the Vista Recovery DVD at a nominal cost.

    Besides, when you start a Vista laptop for the first time, most laptop manufacturers will ask you build Recovery DVDs by yourself using their supplied Recovery software.
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    jackieman is correct about asking you to build Recovery DVD's, but per their agreement with Microsoft - if manufacturers are loading OEM versions of Windows on systems, then the Manufacturer is required at your request to provide you with either recovery media or install media.  They are allowed to charge a fee for those disks - BUT it will also depend on the age of the unit.  Most manufacturers do not keep the recovery media around for much longer than the standard warranty on a system.

    Another alternative would be to call around and take it into a local repair shop.  Since you have the license key, most repair shops have OEM media that can be loaded onto the system using your key - but you will likely pay 90.00 - 180.00 for this service.  You can also go out and buy a full disk or if they will sell it to you an OEM disk of Windows 7.

    Good Luck!
    LVL 62

    Expert Comment

    by:☠ MASQ ☠
    & with Vista not all OEM Keys work with all OEM installs so even if there were an OEM download you'd need the one matching your manufacturer.
    LVL 19

    Accepted Solution

    jackieman: I've had several Dell machines that came with custom Vista Install media (DVD), not a system recovery DVD. I assume Dell would send the same disc on request.

    MASQUERAID: Custom Vista Install Media, like from Dell, may only install on a specific manufacturer's PCs. However, the generic OEM and Retail Vista Install Media will install using any valid OEM key. However, it's possible that the OEM key on the side of certain manufacturer's PCs won't activate online. Instead, you'll have to call MS for activation, which should only take a few minutes.

    If you have a PC from a major OEM (Dell, HP, Gateway, etc), it likely came with Vista "pre-activated". If you want to do a clean install of Vista but backup and restore the "pre-activated" state afterwards, instead of calling for re-activation, then you can follow this guide:

    The guide also mentions what install media you can use, and has a possible way of building your own install media from files on the system partition (not the hidden restore partition).

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