ayekhan
1 Copper

what software comes with xps 8700

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I didn't know where to ask this question as it's not really a hardware one, but I am considering purchasing an XPS 8700 and wanted to clarify a few things.  I have done quite a bit of research, and it seems like Dell has changed their process since the last time i bought a computer from them.

They used to have a driver CD and the OS with the product key so you could do "clean installs" any time.  From what I've read, this is not the case any more?  I have read about the recovery partition and creating a CD and all that.  A few of the recent reviews I've seen online did mention a driver CD.  So I'm not sure what's included? I just want to be sure what's included and what isn't since this is a major purchase.

After searching the forums, I read something about the product key not being available to me for my copy of Windows that I am purchasing - is this the case?  Or did I misinterpret another question. If I want to re-install Windows 7 at any point in the future, won't I need that key?

If anyone can help me before making this purchase, I really want to know how easy it will be for me to do a clean install.  I am not a computer guru, but I am familiar with taking a copy of Windows 7 with the product key and being able to install it on any partition I want.  (SSD or other)  Will I still be able to do this or will I have to  go through Dell's method?

Thanks in advance for any information you can provide before making this purchase.!

Ayesha

 

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J03
1 Nickel

Re: what software comes with xps 8700

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Well, the XPS 8700 comes with a drivers disk and that's about it. The Product Key is supposed to be in the BIOS and when you do a install, the OS does a hash check on your hardware, compares it to the encrypted hash in the BIOS and then uses the Product Key in the BIOS. However, I found it to be in error.

The only thing the computer came with was a driver's disk. It came preloaded with the normal junk like McAfee and Cyberlink, and Microsoft Office 2013 starter.

Most important to create a recovery disk as soon as your get the computer, cause that's how you are supposed to reinstall the OS according to Dell. Dell support and I went around and around about this, cause I tried to do a clean install and the Product Key was not in the BIOS like it should be. When you are in Windows 8, you can run something like ProduKey, Belarc Advisor, etc, and it will generate a Product Key from the Product ID that is in your registry. I asked Dell how I was supposed to do a clean install without a Product Key in the BIOS and 2 "supervisors" told me to buy a retail key.

I was able to do a clean install on a new HDD from a Microsoft Windows 8 disk, and it asked for the key on installation. I used the key I had found using ProduKey and it accepted it. However, when I tried to activate it, it failed activation. I talked to Dell about this and a conference call was sent up with Microsoft Activation. The key I used was genuine, but because it was "tied to the hardware" (read hard drive), I could only activate it on the original hard drive. Microsoft gave me the opportunity to activate it on the 2nd HDD but generally I had to go through Dell cause they are OEM. While I understand the limitations, Microsoft agreed with me that the Product Key should be in the MSDM table in the BIOS (and it wasn't).

I ended up telling Dell their installation of the Product Key was faulty/computer was faulty/BIOS faulty. A replacement computer was ordered. However, a real problem occurs when you go over the 21 day return period. 21 days came and I decided to return the original computer and get all my money back. If I had accepted the 2nd computer (which arrived 5 days later) I would not have been able to return the 2nd computer if there was a problem with it. I had to get it fixed according to Dell support. The countdown to return a computer starts with the original ship date of the first computer only.

In returning the 1st computer, I tried to do a factory recovery/reset, but it failed at 27%. I wiped the HDD and sent the computer back.

The XPS 8700 is a fair computer, a bit overpriced because of the quality. Windows 8 activation OA3.0 sucks.

Am still looking for another computer; don't know if I would buy another XPS 8700 because of Dell method of activation of the Product Key, etc, etc, etc..

You can get a reinstallation disk if you request from Dell Tech Support. Talk to them on the phone though.

Stay with Windows 7, unless you want/need Windows 8 is my suggestion.

ayekhan
1 Copper

Re: what software comes with xps 8700

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Thank you so much for the detailed answer.  I've bought Dells for quite a while now, but this is the first time I'm reluctant to because of the changes they've been making, both in how configurable the computers we can purchase are and the whole activation ordeals I've heard about.  If you have any suggestions of other comparable desktops you've been looking at, let me know.  :-)

I would definitely be looking to use Windows 7; I have no interest in Windows 8 at the moment.  One of the things I read somewhere was that if you get the SSD option, the OS does not come on that, it comes on the other drive.  So, would I have the same issue you did if I wanted to install Windows 7 on the SSD drive instead of what Dell installed it on - would it think it's not a valid version of Windows?

Do you know if ProduKey works on Windows 7?  I have an installation disc already, so I guess I wouldn't need another one from Dell would I?  As long as I use the key that comes with my Dell (assuming I can find it through ProduKey or other means), I should be ok, right?

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RE: what software comes with xps 8700

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I have an Alienware MX17 R4 with Windows 8 and I have ordered these reinstallation disks from Dell because Windows crushed. I paid $59 and guess what, installation wanted a product key. So I had to use one I found on Microsoft page but I can't activate it now and NOBODY is able to get me mine Windows product key. What should I do?

I spend hours phoning Dell tech support  and I tell you I would not buy this computer again. I had twice changed motherboard and video card and now this. Its not worth the money I'll write that review everywhere. 

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8 Platinum

RE: what software comes with xps 8700

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Ondrej Cernicky

Best to post this in the Customer Care Forum, here:

http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/customercare/f/4674.aspx

Bev.

 


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Philip_Yip
6 Indium

RE: what software comes with xps 8700

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I have an Alienware MX17 R4 with Windows 8 and I have ordered these reinstallation disks from Dell because Windows crushed. I paid $59 and guess what, installation wanted a product key. So I had to use one I found on Microsoft page but I can't activate it now and NOBODY is able to get me mine Windows product key. What should I do?

I spend hours phoning Dell tech support  and I tell you I would not buy this computer again. I had twice changed motherboard and video card and now this. Its not worth the money I'll write that review everywhere. 

Microsoft caused a multitude of problems by making Windows 8.1 media incompatible with Windows 8.0 keys and vice versa.... Moreover they caused more issues by forcing the Windows 8.1 Update via the Microsoft Store and even more problems by failing to provide direct links to installation .isos and preventing Dell to. Its funny that despite all the supposed Microsoft "green" policies that they fail to let you use a .iso and insist on wasting time and effort getting the OEM to post proper DVDs or inproper USBs (USBs contain preinstalled junk like McAfee). Anyway Microsoft have put all its OEM users in an awful situation and OEMs cannot load Windows correctly. Its thus possible that Dell sent you Windows 8.1 media (which is better) but shipped you Windows 8.0 with your computer.

I have documented workarounds for this case, first install using a generic product key depending on the sticker affixed to your system (Core or Pro) and also media (8.0 or 8.1) see here for details:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/a-clean-install-of-windows/microsoft-product-activation/in...

Once you have installed obtain your BIOS system locked preinstallation key using RW-Everything:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/a-clean-install-of-windows/microsoft-product-activation/ob...

Finally activate using this key via change key:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/a-clean-install-of-windows/microsoft-product-activation/pr...

If the media is Windows 8.1 then install the updates here:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/a-clean-install-of-windows/obtaining-the-latest-service-pa...

If its Windows 8.0 you are best to find a Windows 8.1 .iso from an unofficial source e.g. as mentioned here and follow the steps above:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/download-microsoft-windows-and-office/download-microsoft-w...

Otherwise you need to get the Windows 8.1 update from the Store which is problematic and then install the updates for Windows 8.1:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/download-microsoft-windows-and-office/download-microsoft-w...

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/a-clean-install-of-windows/obtaining-the-latest-service-pa...

Dr Philip Yip
Tech Enthusiast and Author of the Unofficial Dell Windows Reinstallation Guide

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
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