I recently bought a copy of Windows 7 for Vmware Fusion 3; however, that system crashed, and I have had a long drawn out discussion with technicians about how to recover it. I've faced the facts. The "dictionary issue" has erased everything and left a shell. So this morning, I resolved to reinstall Windows 7 with my backup disk and enter my activation key that I received in the e-mail. Unfortunately, activation inside of Windows 7 believes that my key is invalid or already in use by another computer. I did activate the key with the other virtual system on my mac, but I have deleted it and moved beyond that. How can I convince Windows 7 that my old system is gone and that I can use this key again on my new install?
The re-activation issue occurs because Windows 7 has been reinstalled. The first time you install 7 on this computer and activate it, the Activation server will record some activation-specific information such as Machine ID, Product ID as well as the Product Key that was used to activate. After the reinstallation, while trying to activate via the Internet, the activation wizard will send the same information including the Machine ID, Product ID and Product Key you used to the Activation server for validation. The activation server will query the existing record. If it finds the Product Key has already been registered once, the activation will fail because the server will think this is a second installation which violates the EULA (End User License Agreement) of Windows 7. At this point, you need to re-activate the system via the Automatic Phone Activation System instead.
For your reference, I am attaching the steps to perform the Self Activation of Windows 7.
Please note, you will need a pen and paper to write the phone and the 48 digit ID number.
Step 1: How to retrieve the Installation ID
1. Log on Windows 7 as an administrator. Click Start, type "SLUI.EXE 4" (without the quotation marks) in the search box, and press “Enter”.
Note: There is a space between "SLUI.EXE" and "4".
2. Select the nearest location, and click "Next".
3. Please click "Continue" when the User Account Control dialog-box appears.
4. The Windows Activation will generate a toll-free phone number, 1-866-740-1256 for US, 1-866-740-1256 for Canada. The installation ID will be displayed in the following format:
xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx – xxxxxx
5. Please write down the phone number and the installation ID.
Microsoft Product Activation system will then generate a confirmation ID and activate Window 7 on your computer. For your convenience, I have included the detailed steps below:
Step 2: Calling the Activation Center
Note: Microsoft Product Activation is completely anonymous; therefore, no personal information is collected. The entire activation process will take about 5 minutes. Your patience is appreciated.
Please listen carefully to the Interactive Voice System's instructions:
1. Select 7.
2. Please enter the installation ID when prompted.
3. Please note the confirmation ID for further use.
Step 3: Activate Windows 7 using the confirmation ID
1. Please enter the confirmation ID in the Windows Activation box and press "Next".
2. Please follow the onscreen steps to complete the system activation process.
Your Windows 7 Activation is now complete.
Arthur Li - MSFT
- Marked as answer by Arthur_LiMicrosoft contingent staff, Moderator Monday, May 31, 2010 1:51 AM