I have a PC that I will need, but just got a rMBP. Can I use my copy of Win on both?

NoHo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
300
4
I just got the top end rMBP 15" and wanted to use bootcamp to install Windows. Can I use the serial key I have on my PC to install bootcamp or do I need to buy a completely separate copy of Windows?

And if I can use my previous copy of Windows, will it still be work on my PC if I use it as well on my rMBP?

I've tried searching but any combination of use win on mac and pc comes up with how to use bootcamp and I'm having a hard time finding a specific answer to my question.
 

pdjudd

macrumors 601
Jun 19, 2007
4,037
65
Plymouth, MN
No. Copies of Windows pre-installed on a PC can only be legally installed on that computer - you cannot re-use the serial number. You will need a retail copy of Windows.
 

NoHo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
300
4
No. Copies of Windows pre-installed on a PC can only be legally installed on that computer - you cannot re-use the serial number. You will need a retail copy of Windows.
Even if I built the PC myself and Windows wasn't preinstalled on the PC and I bought a retail disc with a serial number for it?
 

Apples555

macrumors regular
Mar 4, 2012
165
21
You're not supposed to install Windows on two or more computers if you only have one license.

An OEM licence can only be used on one computer and only one computer - it can be reactivated as many times as you like, but again, only used on one single computer and not transferred.

A Windows Fully boxed product can be installed on as many machines as you like as long as it is only one at a time.

On all of these, if you do it to much, activation will fail however it is just a matter of ringing up Microsoft and explaining the situation, they will either give you a code to type that will activate Windows or give you a new key.
From here.
 

pdjudd

macrumors 601
Jun 19, 2007
4,037
65
Plymouth, MN
Was it OEM? That gets tied to the hardware and cannot be separated. It it was a Retail (full, not upgrade) version, you cannot run it on more than one machine at a time.

Upgrade versions do not allow you to re-use the older version either.
 

NoHo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
300
4
Was it OEM? That gets tied to the hardware and cannot be separated. It it was a Retail (full, not upgrade) version, you cannot run it on more than one machine at a time.

Upgrade versions do not allow you to re-use the older version either.
It was a full retail.
 

hallux

macrumors 68030
Apr 25, 2012
2,951
595
Your Windows license can only be used on one computer at a time. The only benefit you get from the retail box is that you can transfer it to as many computers as you want, as long as there's only one functional install at a time.
 

NoHo

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
300
4
Your Windows license can only be used on one computer at a time. The only benefit you get from the retail box is that you can transfer it to as many computers as you want, as long as there's only one functional install at a time.
Okay, that makes sense. I just bought that version of Windows less than a year ago so I was hoping I wouldn't have to buy it again once I got a rMBP for work.

Thanks for all your help everyone in this thread.
 
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