Windows XP SP3 Home Basic OEM Installation Count

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by BootstrapMetal, Feb 20, 2009.

  1. BootstrapMetal macrumors member

    Jul 28, 2006
    Hello everyone,

    I had a retail version of Windows XP Professional SP2 that I used for my computer. However, I like to format often and start with a fresh installation. This worked fine for 4 years. However, Microsoft denied my last installation, claiming I had overused the key and that forced me to seek another windows version. Ticked off, I bought an OEM Windows XP Home Basic SP3 license + cd.

    I installed it and it went fine for a bit. Now, I REALLY have to format and have a nice install. My question is: How many installs am I entitled to? Can I reinstall it? Personally, it sickens me to ask that question as it is a complete fraudulent license scheme by Microsoft. So can I reinstall it? It would be installation number two with the basic version.
  2. pdjudd macrumors 601

    Jun 19, 2007
    Plymouth, MN

    The OEM install will only be allowed once, you will have to call Microsoft and manually activate it for any future re-installs - you just have to tell them it was for a re-install and thats it.
  3. BootstrapMetal thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 28, 2006
    Thank you for the reply.

    Though I can't say I'm not entirely thrilled with the response. I mean, I bought the product. I should be entitled to reinstall it as many times as I want without going through Microsoft...

    Anyhow... It's not like I can't do anything with it. I can still reinstall it which is a good thing.

    I will contact Microsoft later tonight. Thank you pdjudd. I'm thankful I asked before doing anything myself.
  4. KevinN206 macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2009
    You're in fact entitled to install and reinstall as many times as you want, but there're some restrictions. Unfortunately, when you exceed a certain limit on internet activation, then you have to call MS. Normally, people don't go through this because Windows disk from OEM (such as Dell and HP, but not the one that you bought) are pre-activated for the computer that was purchased. So you can essentially reinstall on that specific computer unlimited without having to deal with activation. The licensing is like so for each:

    Windows XP Professional, retail, non-upgrade:

    Unlimited number of installation on ONE device. If you choose to move the current installation to a new computer, then you must erase the installation of Windows on the previous computer. After a certain number of internet activation, you have to call MS to do the activation over the phone.

    Supposes you install XP Pro on a custom DIY, and now you want to move that XP Pro license to your Mac, then you MUST erase the XP Pro from your DIY (or just not use it at all). Again, this is a licensing in the EULA that says a single license can only be installed on ONE device at a time.

    For this license, the internet activation may fail due to "too many prior activations", BUT you can still call MS to activate it. This step usually takes about 5 minutes to complete. You're not required to purchase a new license, and you shouldn't since the license entitles you to re-install as many times as you like. It's the activation over the Internet that's limited. In this case, you've to call instead.

    Windows XP Home OEM:

    You can install as many times on ONE ORIGINAL computer. Once installed, you cannot transfer this license to a "newer" or "different" computer. Unlike the retail version, you cannot transfer this license to a different computer. However, you can install and reinstall as many times as you want on your Original Device. The activation issues is the same with the Pro retail version.
  5. ravenvii macrumors 604


    Mar 17, 2004
    Melenkurion Skyweir
    This isn't true. I have an OEM copy of Windows XP Home, and I've re-installed it many, many times, on different machines even (not at the same time, mind). No problems with activation.

    Just make sure you wait 3-6 months between installs, and you won't have a problem.
  6. KevinN206 macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2009
    You are right. It will let you install on different hardware, but doing so violates the license EULA. But that doesn't matter to me anyway.
  7. FX120 macrumors 65816


    May 18, 2007
    Just curious, did someone at Microsoft actually tell you that your licence is no longer valid, or did it just no longer let you activate online?

    I have a licence of XP Pro from 2001 that I have used probably 10-15 times and while it will no longer activate online, a call to Microsoft's activation line still will activate the product, even on new hardware, they simply ask if you have removed this licence from any other hardware before reactivating.
  8. BootstrapMetal thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 28, 2006
    The online activation wouldn't work. I was also advised by someone that calling wouldn't change anything. I should've probably done a more thorough research on the subject before buying anything... Thank you everyone.
  9. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2008
    Silicon Valley
    I just got down installing XP Pro on Fusion. It said I registered it too many times and told me to call MS. I called and got this indian guy. He asked me a bunch of stuff, just say you are re-installing on a computer (don't say Mac or whatever) and you bought this from a store. If he asks how many other computers you installed with, just say none. He'll give you a confirmation ID code and you enter it in.
  10. FX120 macrumors 65816


    May 18, 2007
    Whoever told you that was wrong.

    After X number of activations (5 I believe), you've just got to call into MS for an activation code.

    When it asks for product activation, click "Activate by phone", call the number, the tech will ask you if you've got this software installed on any other computers currently, have you read off the string of numbers on your screen, and give you a code to type back in.
  11. BootstrapMetal thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 28, 2006
    Well, the installation went without a hitch. I didn't need to call anyone. Thank you Mac Rumors Forum.

Share This Page