Backing up a cheap windows 10 tablet with os license

I have a cheap Windows 10 tablet which I want to run Linux on. How do I backup the license and operating system of a tablet which came with Windows preinstalled? This is one of those small cheap tablets which got the special windows oem licensing. I'm afraid that if I restore it without proper recovery then the license will break. Is Microsoft's backup and restore feature enough? Do I need system recovery? Do I use a third party option? There isn't much storage on the tablet so I would have to backup to an external USB or network location. I don't have the device in front of me but it's an older 8" NuVision tablet I bought when it was on sale online in the Microsoft store.

To clarify, I don't care about any of the data on the device other than the OS and license.
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAsked:
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☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
Hi Brandon, you can reinstall from scratch as well as a backup
https://www.windowsobserver.com/2017/11/18/how-to-clean-install-windows-10-nuvision-windows-10-tablets/
Activation is automatic, the activation code is embedded in the tablet’s hardware.
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Dr. KlahnPrincipal Software EngineerCommented:
I'd image the system "drive" using at least two different imaging tools.  Macrium Reflect would be my first choice.
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
Thanks. Using multiple tools is a good idea. One can never have too many backups.
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pgm554Commented:
A lot of them come with a recovery partition that you can boot into through the start up bios and it will restore to factory settings.
So as long as you can do that ,should be no issues .
You could just set the lap to dual boot between Linux and Widows if you have enough space and not worry about a reinstall.
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
There isn't enough space for Windows, let alone two distributions. This is also a reason why it doesn't have a recovery partition.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
It came with Windows 10 so the licensing is in the Microsoft License Server. You can reinstall Windows that way
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
I'm not sure what you mean by license server & reinstall that way?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
When you begin to install Windows 10 it looks to the licensing server. New with Windows 10
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
How would it know anything about whether or not it's a valid license for that hardware? Where would the installation media come from?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
If it came Windows 10 the license is good
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
If it came Windows 10 the license is good
I don't understand this sentence. Can you please elaborate?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Windows 10 is licensed via the Microsoft Licensing Server, not a Key. That is why you can reinstall at any time. I have done this
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
Is there a way to verify that the code is in the hardware? I'd rather not buy another windows license.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
The code is not in the computer. That idea died. You can reinstall Windows 10 any time . It works for me
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☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
???John, of course the code is still in the computer.
 Additionally since the Redstone editons of Win 10 if you're using a Microsoft account to log in that's all you need to activate.  

In the meantime since Redstone was introduced no one has gone 'round to all the computers with embedded codes and removed them - both processes activate.

And it is definitely built into the NuVsion hardware :)
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
I don't use Microsoft accounts. Do I need to create one before restoring the installation and license?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
No you do not need a Microsoft Account (but it is a good idea).

You don't need it but Recover Keys (here) gives me the Windows 10 Key. You can do that if you think you need it.

recoverkeys.com
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Brandon LyonSenior Frontend DeveloperAuthor Commented:
Thank you everyone. I believe I have enough information to start backing things up.
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Thank you for the update
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