Highlighted
1 Copper

Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

Hi! I have Dell Inspiron 3521 which was given to me by my sister. It has Windows 8 installed originally, then I upgraded it into 8.1. I used it for over a year since she gave me but then, it's original hard disk died. It was stuck for a year when I finally decided to buy a new hard disk but sadly, the hard disk didn't have an operating system. Now, I want to download Windows 8 from Microsoft and I'm aware that they'll ask for a product key. My question is, can I use the product key that acme with this and where can I find it? Thanks!

1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
Highlighted
10 Diamond

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

The product key is embedded in a chip on the system board.

https://itsolutionsblog.net/3-ways-to-extract-the-windows-8-product-key/

View solution in original post

9 Replies
Highlighted
10 Diamond

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

The product key is embedded in a chip on the system board.

https://itsolutionsblog.net/3-ways-to-extract-the-windows-8-product-key/

View solution in original post

Highlighted
1 Copper

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

Hi! Thanks for your reply! I've read that when reinstalling Windows 8, it will automatically retrieve the product key. I guess I'll try it out.

Highlighted
7 Thorium

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

Hi! Thanks for your reply! I've read that when reinstalling Windows 8, it will automatically retrieve the product key. I guess I'll try it out.

Do not bother with Windows 8.1 instead use Windows 10. It will automatically pickup the Product Key embedded in the UEFI BIOS and activate when online:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/software-download/windows10 

Detailed instructions here:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/windows-oem-faqs-and-downloads/#CleanInstall15063 

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

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
Highlighted
6 Gallium

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

^ Not necessarily!  During the 1 year after Win10 launched when Microsoft was offering free Win10 upgrades, users could perform clean installs of Win10 and enter product keys for Win8.1, Win8, or Win7, and Microsoft still activated those installations even though the systems never went through an actual "upgrade".  But the OP says that this system was only ever upgraded to Win8.1.  That suggests that the free Win10 upgrade was never claimed on that system during the 1-year eligibility period, in which case Win10 would NOT automatically activate on that 8.1 key now.

Highlighted
7 Thorium

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

^ Not necessarily!  During the 1 year after Win10 launched when Microsoft was offering free Win10 upgrades, users could perform clean installs of Win10 and enter product keys for Win8.1, Win8, or Win7, and Microsoft still activated those installations even though the systems never went through an actual "upgrade".  But the OP says that this system was only ever upgraded to Win8.1.  That suggests that the free Win10 upgrade was never claimed on that system during the 1-year eligibility period, in which case Win10 would NOT automatically activate on that 8.1 key now.

The "1 year free upgrade" was just a marketing flop. Windows 7 OEM and Windows 8.x OEM Product Keys still activate with Windows 10. I have extensively been testing this and the activation mechanism of Windows 10 on new hardware. See here:

http://dellwindowsreinstallationguide.com/windows-7-oem-keys-and-windows-8-x-oem-keys-still-activate... 

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

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
Highlighted
6 Gallium

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

Interesting data point, but I also tested laying down a Win10 image (sysprepped, of course) onto Win7/8 systems that did not claim their upgrade within the 1-year period and although the product key was accepted during installation, activation was refused. In one case, the person I helped qualified for the assistive technology upgrade, so I did a clean Win8 install and then ran that update, at which point Win10 DID activate, but that's a special case and mechanism.

Highlighted
7 Thorium

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

Interesting data point, but I also tested laying down a Win10 image (sysprepped, of course) onto Win7/8 systems that did not claim their upgrade within the 1-year period and although the product key was accepted during installation, activation was refused. In one case, the person I helped qualified for the assistive technology upgrade, so I did a clean Win8 install and then ran that update, at which point Win10 DID activate, but that's a special case and mechanism.

As you see I demonstrate that the activation still works here. I've tried numerous upgrade installs and clean installs (on systems which have never had an Activated Windows 10 activation before):

 

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

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
Highlighted
6 Gallium

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

I'm not questioning your success; I'm just telling you what I've found doing the same thing.  Too bad Microsoft won't just announce an official policy of free upgrades to set the expectation if they're already allowing it at least in some cases, I guess.

Highlighted
8 Xenon

RE: Windows 8 Product Key

Jump to solution

Any Legit windows 8.0 media will reinstall and not ask for a key.

If you know someone who has the Retail 8.0 pro upgrade you can use that disk.  Works for Home or Pro.

https://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-Windows-Pro-Upgrade-Version/dp/B008H3SW4I/

 

Install windows 10 skipping a key and then use showkeyplus to reveal the bios key.

https://github.com/Superfly-Inc/ShowKeyPlus/releases

https://github.com/Superfly-Inc/ShowKeyPlus/releases/download/ShowKeyPlus6477/ShowKeyPlus1.0.6477.zi...

Find your Windows product key with ShowKeyPlus.
Applies to Windows 7, 8 and 10
Your product key depends on the type of Windows version you bought:
• If you bought Windows from an authorized retailer, the product key will only show as the Installed key. This applies to OEM System Builder keys as well.
• If you upgraded Windows, the Original key will be the key installed prior to the upgrade. NB if you upgrade to Windows 10 for free, you'll receive a unique ‘digital entitlement’ instead of a product key. The key displayed will be a generic key in that case.
• If you bought a new PC running Windows, the product key will be pre–installed on your PC and the key will be included in the firmware in the case of Windows 8 or 10 - or as an OEM marker, in the case of previous versions. The OEM key will display the key in the case of the former, or whether your PC was built for Windows Vista or Windows 7.
• Apart from the key, the associated Edition of each key is displayed below it.


Report Unresolved Customer Service Issues
here

I do not work for Dell. I too am a user.

The forum is primarily user to user, with Dell employees moderating
Contact USA Technical Support






Get Support on Twitter @DellCaresPro