What is the Certificate of Authenticity (COA)?
A Certificate of Authenticity (COA) is a string of characters -- alpha, numeric, or alpha-numeric -- which coincides with a particular software product installed on your computer. The most common COA received with a Dell computer is the Microsoft Windows COA. You also receive one if you purchase an office suite, such as Microsoft Office 2003 Basic.
The COA indicates that the copy of your software is legally licensed by the manufacturer, such as Microsoft or Corel. These COAs are located on your computer or with your back up CDs.
The Microsoft Windows Certificate of Authenticity (COA) label is a label containing a 25-digit alpha-numeric Product Key code and a 14-digit COA code. This label is located on the chassis of your Dell computer system.
Windows 8 computers do not have a Certificate of Authenticity. For more information, see "Where is my Windows 8 Product Key, and How Can I Tell That My Windows 8 Installation Is Genuine? "
The labels are located in slightly different locations, including inside the battery compartment, on the bottom of the computer depending on which system type you own. Refer to the picture below for an example of what the labels look like.
Figure 1: Bottom of Inspiron Computer
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Article ID: SLN289661
Last Date Modified: 01/20/2015 04:19 PM