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windows XP OEM licenses

Posted on 2013-10-22
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we are building  few small board computers which we need windows XP Pro licenses for resale.
is it legal for us to purchase OEM window 7 PRO licenses and downgrade them to win xp PRO?
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Question by:leop1212
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by:unknown_routine
ID: 39591609
is it legal for us to purchase OEM window 7 PRO licenses and downgrade them to win xp PRO?

I don't think so, but I'm not sure what you mean by downgrade them to win xp PRO. There is no software to do that. win xp PRO actually comes as part of windows 7 (virtual PC_)

Why not just buying win xp PRO which is ceaper and install it directly?
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bigbigpig earned 668 total points
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by:Dave Baldwin
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by:chavez808
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Do you mean that somebody purchased workstations and had activated these workstations on the network using an Enterprise Key.  Therefore, they have "un-activated" OEM stickers on the side of those workstations that you want to purchase?

Those keys will not work without the motherboard containing a configured BIOS chip from the same OEM manufacturer.
Upon bootup, there will be an OS check with the BIOS and Windows 7 will load telling you that you have a faulty key and need to purchase a new Windows 7 key.   More details online about the relationship with the OEM key and the BIOS on the motherboard.

OR
Do you mean to purchase OEM keys online or from a retail store that sells OEM keys to resellers?

This attempt will fail.  
You can only downgrade to another OS after you have previously upgraded.  This means that you already owned a Windows XP key.   The Windows 7 upgrade was performed rather than a clean installation.  The upgrade process saves your old installation data in a Windows.old folder.  This folder is then used to revert back and downgrade.
Again, you can only revert back if you had performed an UPGRADE, not if you perform a clean installation.


I believe the only way to install Windows XP on a custom built computer is to purchase new software.

Try ebay or craigslist. Im sure you can find unopened software for sale.

Good luck!
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 39592008
Yes

You will act as the System Builder on behalf of the End User (you cannot be both)

You will retain responsibity for support.

You should ask the customer if they want the system provided with XP installed ( normally the end user is responsible)

Windows 7 technically should be installed using the OPK and the End User accept the EULA before the downgrade takes place so that the Key on the CoA sticker for Win 7 is in an activated state.  The XP downgrade from a System Builder disk is meant to be activated via Microsoft 'phone support where you'll be given a "one-off" activation Key for the XP installation under downgrade rights.

Be careful about providing reinstallation media for the customer.  You are not permitted to provide them with either the original or copied disks from the System Builder kit.

More details in Microsoft's basic OEM guide
http://oem.microsoft.com/public/worldwide/licensing/microsoft_oem_system_builder_licensing_guide_v2_012111.pdf

Or from their OEM homepage
http://www.microsoft.com/oem/en/licensing

In summary then, the main "gotchas" to be aware of are

The OEM Win 7 Pro install should be activate to accept the EULA then the customer can exert downgrade rights.

The CoA is for Win7 Pro which is the OS they are actually paying for
The XP activation key is not the same and you need to get a one off activation for the downgraded system from MS

You can't give the customer System Builder disks for either OS as that breaks your license as the System Builder.

Technically you should ask for a written authorization from the end user for you to carry this all out on their behalf (this is just a CYA thing as otherwise they didn't sign up to the EULA on the PC - you did!)

I guess also on a non-licencing note you should be pointing out clearly that XP is about to go End of Life.
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