Reformatting a Downgraded Windows 7 PC - Invalid Key?
Posted on 2011-09-17
This happened once before and I worked around it using another key, but I want to find the answer to this. I think it may be related to Windows XP being discontinued, but I am not sure and am thusfar unable to find a definitive answer online.
I have a client's Compaq PC here in my office which needs to be rebuilt. It has a sticker on it for Windows 7, but was downgraded from the factory to Windows XP to make it compatible with a piece of software they use in their office. Therefore, the sticker says Windows 7, but Jellybean Keyfinder says XP SP3. After grabbing the key and all user data from the XP install, I used a genuine HP Restore Plus! CD and XP SP3 disc to reformat her laptop (it's a Compaq 610, btw) and all seemed to be going well. After installing W/LAN drivers and trying to go to MS Update, the Activation wizard said my XP Key was Invalid.
Calling MS Activation was no help. After putting in my Installation ID, it told me to go pound sand, and hung up. Seriously.
I even tried using the Windows 7 key, thinking maybe they have it coded to activate the downgraded version of Windows...no dice.
Any help would be very much appreciated. I can work around this, but I'd rather find the actual answer. In the meantime, I will double-check to make sure the Windows XP install from before is legit - I'm already sure it is, but I'll check again anyway.