Do I need a new Windows activation key each time?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by BasicGreatGuy, Aug 29, 2015.

  1. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    In the middle of several books.
    #1
    If I am running Parallels 11 and need to restore my Mac or do a clean install of the OS, will I have to purchase another one- time Windows activation key for use in Parallels?
     
  2. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 1, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #2
    Windows 7 probably not. You should be able to use the same key.
    Windows 8 has generic keys that can be found online for use during installation but you will need your previous key for activation. If your Parallels environment has changed then Windows will detect it as a hardware change and you might need to use Microsofts phone activation to explain the change.
    Windows 10 creates a hash tag of your particular hardware and if you ever need to reinstall, you'll be able to skip all requests for license keys during the install. If, once installed, Windows 10 doesn't detect any hardware changes then it will activate automatically. If it does then you're back to using their phone activation and possibly buying an other key.
     
  3. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #3
    One trick I've used in Parallels for reinstalling Windows is to perform the install, activate it, then make an archive copy of the PVM. If I want a clean install of Windows I just copy that PVM file then install whatever apps I need.
     
  4. BasicGreatGuy thread starter Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    In the middle of several books.
    #4
    Gjwilly and glen,

    Thank you gents for the valued replies. They were very helpful. I took your advice Glen, and made a clone of Windows with Parallels, using the built in clone feature. I am still learning my way around Parallels, as it is day two of use for me. Thus far, it appears to be a very powerful and highly manageable program. I had no problem updating Windows 7 professional to Windows 10 professional with Parallels.
     
  5. doynton macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2014
    #5
    You may want to copy the pvm not clone the machine as the clone process (afaik) generates a different HWID and probably therefore it will not be activated. Best to check it anyway.
     
  6. BasicGreatGuy thread starter Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Location:
    In the middle of several books.
    #6
    Good idea. Better to be safe than sorry. I will do that. Thanks for the reply.
     
  7. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #7
    Copying the PVM file is what I meant. That gives you an exact copy of the virtual PC.
     

Share This Page