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Transfering Windows 10 retail licence to a new PC?

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
Currently I'm building a brand new windows 10 PC and have confirmed my current (very long in the tooth, upgraded into obscurity!) PC has a "retail" Windows 10 Pro installation. It started out life as a windows 7 and was upgraded free to windows 10 a long time ago.

I was wondering if anyone has tried and or succeeded in transferring a working license across to a new PC? (Seems to be a viable way of saving £100!)
 

kommando828

ULTIMATE Member
I thought it was now linked to your Microsoft account, so sign on using your Microsoft account and that should be enough as long as exactly the same edition or lower is used. Worked on one PC I put a new hard drive on and old hard drive was dead.
 

timeless

ULTIMATE Member
Staff member
Volunteer Mod
it might be possible, however it would depend on factors such as, was this PC a branded one or a custom build (branded systems tend to be software locked, that is to say slight modifications have been made to recovery media so you couldnt transfer it to a different branded system if you havent upgraded to a custom build).

is your current system using the current build of windows? the latest software build does contain the ability to create windows installation media which could be used on the other system but you would need to recover the windows key l believe (lve only ever used full versions of windows so lm not entirely sure if the upgrade versions will provide exactly what you need as lm working under assumptions).
 

Mark.J

Administrator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
Yes there's a bunch of software online that can help you find the product key (Microsoft do make this a bit more hassle than it should be). So long as it's a true retail key and plenty of time has passed between your original and new install, then you should be able to re-use it. But as timeless hints, if the key is from an OEM install instead then you might struggle to re-use it due to different licensing rules.
 

butler

ULTIMATE Member
magic jellybean will find your windows key!
 

sheephouse

Top Member
I was wondering if anyone has tried and or succeeded in transferring a working license across to a new PC? (Seems to be a viable way of saving £100!)
I've done this a number of times - it usually works, even if you have to contact Microsoft sometimes.
However, if it doesn't and you need to buy a new license, there are companies that resell licenses from decomissioned machines - quite legal, and much cheaper. All you get is the licence key - you can get the software itself from Microsoft.
I won't post the name or URL of a company I have used a number of times as I don't want to fill the fora with adverts, but if you want to know then feel free to PM me. If you search online, just be sure to check the company is reputable before you buy!
 

TTJJ

ULTIMATE Member
Works just fine for me, I've done it plenty of times. Odd occasion where it doesn't automatically pull your license from your account but there's a dedicated activation support flow which will attempt it manually and connect you to someone if that doesn't work.
 

Buggerlugz

ULTIMATE Member
Well, the new PC is up and running (ludicrously fast with OTT RGB and all!) and whilst windows 10 didn't like my key during install, I just went into "troubleshoot activation" selected "I've changed components in my PC" and it just activated!

I was most impressed it took less time to install windows than it did to create the USB disk on my old computer.

Weirdly my old desktop wallpaper was up with the fresh install on a brand new M.2 drive! Guess Microsoft does know everything about you, just like google eh!

Just need a half-decent graphics card now, wish me luck on that front guys!
 

2badmice

Casual Member
Well, the new PC is up and running (ludicrously fast with OTT RGB and all!) and whilst windows 10 didn't like my key during install, I just went into "troubleshoot activation" selected "I've changed components in my PC" and it just activated!

I was most impressed it took less time to install windows than it did to create the USB disk on my old computer.

Weirdly my old desktop wallpaper was up with the fresh install on a brand new M.2 drive! Guess Microsoft does know everything about you, just like google eh!

Just need a half-decent graphics card now, wish me luck on that front guys!
If you login to your Windows account it syncs over, had this headache with a work PC and my desktop wallpaper appearing at work.

You can turn off this feature in Windows, should you wish
 
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