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Cloning Vista machine onto new hardware - activation issues

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Last Modified: 2017-05-30
Hi,
I have a legacy application that is currently running on an old Vista machine, this machine is on its last legs and needs to be replaced, however the software vendor wants a silly amount of money for re-installing it onto a new machine. So...
I thought, if I could clone the machine onto a newer PC (dissimilar hardware) that would be a way round it for now, but, I am assuming when I do this that the OEM copy of Vista will go non-genuine and then wont reactivate. My question is, if i was to buy a retail version of Vista, could I re-activate the cloned OEM with the retail key as it would then in theory be licensed (as far as paying for it goes).
Hope this is clear! Any help gratefully received.
Cheers
Andrew
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AlexA lack of information provides a lack of a decent solution.
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Commented:
No is the simple answer, the OEM and retail codes are completely different as is the licencing. You "may" be able to call microsoft and explain the situation to them, however I doubt it'll work.

I
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018

Commented:
You cannot re-use an OEM license on a different machine. It physical will not work (as noted above) and it is against Microsoft Licensing rules.  

You need a new license for Vista on the new machine (not the existing license).

Vista is dead, so if you have new hardware, get a newer operating system: Windows 7 maybe or preferably Windows 10.
Natty GregIn Theory (IT)
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Commented:
you should be able to use the current key-or volume license provided that computer is decommissioned, however, if you have a receipt and you explain the situation to Microsoft you may be able to get what you want, back in the day I was able to get new keys providing I was able to answer Microsoft questions.
noxchoIT Product Manager
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Top Expert 2009

Commented:
If you have a product key on a sticker on your machine then you can try moving system to dissimilar hardware and activate it (maybe even calling MS). If the old machine is going to be disassembled then you can do this. However, your legacy software can stop working as well if it notices that the OS is moved to new hardware.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018

Commented:
OEM cannot be moved even if the old hardware dies. Microsoft might help you but I doubt it.
AlexA lack of information provides a lack of a decent solution.
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Commented:
Your best bet would be to image it onto a VM maybe, that may work a bit better.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Expert of the Year 2018

Commented:
That works. I have Vista virtual machine myself. But then your new computer needs a more modern operating system and so you may not need Vista at all if you do this.
A lack of information provides a lack of a decent solution.
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Commented:
But, with that being said, he could possibly image the machine and then check

http://smallbusiness.chron.com/convert-oem-windows-7-retail-license-56959.html

Which may work for vista as well... It's worth a shot at least.

Go get the VM Converter, upload it to your VM hardware, then replace the OEM code with a retail one.... That could work
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