Windows 10: Find Product Key On Unbootable Drive

Discus and support Find Product Key On Unbootable Drive in Windows 10 Updates and Activation to solve the problem; I have to do a clean install, and I don't know where my activation key is. My unbootable drive is viewable when using another drive to boot. Is there... Discussion in 'Windows 10 Updates and Activation' started by jimlau, Jun 24, 2017.

  1. jimlau Win User

    Find Product Key On Unbootable Drive


    I have to do a clean install, and I don't know where my activation key is. My unbootable drive is viewable when using another drive to boot. Is there some place in file Explorer that I can find my key is so I have it for a fresh install?

    :)
     
    jimlau, Jun 24, 2017
    #1

  2. windows 10 failed to update error c1900101-2000c

    How did you receive Windows 7? Did it come preinstalled on the PC so that it has a COA sticker with readable Product Key attached to the case? If it's retail can you locate the folder or insert with Key that came with the disk?

    For retail you can create bootable media to retrieve your Product Key from the unbootable Windows 7 installation following

    How To Recover Windows 7/8 Product Key From Unbootable Drive
    .

    Other methods are here for
    How to Find Your Lost Windows or Office Product Keys.


    Once you have the Windows 7 key you can
    Clean Install Windows 10
    while skipping the Product Key and then after install insert the Windows 7 key to activate. Follow the steps in the link to get and keep the best possible install, making sure to delete all partitions down to unallocated space.

    If you can't retrieve the Product Key, then I would try
    Troubleshooting Windows 7 Failure to Start - Microsoft Community
     
    Greg Carmack - Windows MVP, Jun 24, 2017
    #2
  3. Failed Windows 10 upgrade

    Please clarify what OS came with the PC. It must have been Windows 7 if you have a COA sticker with unreadable Product Key. Windows 8 and 10 come with embedded Product Keys from factory. Windows 7 has the COA sticker with Product Key.

    You'll need to use a magnifying glass or take a phone pic and blow it up to see if you can make out the Product Key. Then you can insert that Product Key into the Activation settings in Windows 10 to activate providing you installed the corresponding version
    Home>Home.

    There is another way you might be able to get the old Windows 7 key. Check if there is a C:\Windows.old folder. If so you can follow

    How To Recover Windows 7 8 Product Key From Unbootable Drive
    .

    You can also use Recovery media or order it from the manufacturer to restore Windows 7, then do the in-place Upgrade to Windows 10 using the media and following

    Overcoming Windows 10 Upgrade Failures
    . But it needs to be done by July 29th to get the free Upgrade offer.
     
    Greg Carmack - Windows MVP, Jun 24, 2017
    #3
  4. Bree New Member

    Find Product Key On Unbootable Drive

    Yes, if you can see the windows folder on the unbootable drive you should be able to retrieve its key with ShowKeyPlus.

    ShowKeyPlus
     
  5. Samuria Win User
    Why do you want a key if you sign in with a Ms account when you do a clean install skip the key and it will activate via Ms server
     
    Samuria, Jun 24, 2017
    #5
  6. Assuming he is running Windows 10, and activated with a Digital License. He has Windows 7 Pro listed as his OS though?
     
    alphanumeric, Jun 24, 2017
    #6
  7. NavyLCDR New Member
    A Microsoft Account has nothing to do with the digital license stored on Microsoft Activation servers. Digital licenses stored on Microsoft Activation servers are by the unique hardware ID of the computer, not a Microsoft Account.
     
    NavyLCDR, Jun 25, 2017
    #7
  8. Find Product Key On Unbootable Drive

    *Ditto You can activate with a local account if you wish. Different user account too. Activation is based on the hardware hash, and does it match what is stored with the Digital Licence.
     
    alphanumeric, Apr 5, 2018
    #8
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Find Product Key On Unbootable Drive

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