Win 7 Key install and ID HELP!!

Can somebody please explain the Producy Key and ID key and the validation process please because i am having difficulty in validating my copy of windows.

I will explain because I have messed up somewhere trying to be clever:

Firstly ..I purchased a upgrade win 32/64 discs with key but found I would prefer a full Version install so I purchased window 7 Full version Disc with Key. So I put the upgrade discs to one side and used the Full version
I installed the full version with OEM product key on my older machine which was just about 64 bit freindly but found that it was not upto date and slow so I purchased a new i7 core machine cpu and Mobo which is fully 64 bit happy....stay with me please guys.
I installed the Full version Win 7 disc again and tried to install the same OEM product key but microsoft said it had been used before on my old machine and i cannot use that key again!!! OEM use only once!! GOB Smacked!! So I am left with a Full Version Disc with no Product Key and maybe no ID key? (I would like that ID explained later please!)
So I went online (Ebay) and purchased 2 Genuine Licence Keys (so they said) but they looked real and had good feedback. so I used one on my Full version disc new machine and it worked ...but now (after 3 months)and it is saying that it is not a genuine copy..I have been using it for 3 months and it was saying it is a geniune install and key. I contacted Microsoft and they say the Key I was given was a Developers and programmers key valid for a few months???and not genuine???

Then to make matters more tricky I then got another new 64 bit CPU mobo Machine and used the same win 7 Full version disc again to install Win 7 full version and I then used the product Key # from my upgrade disc (if you remember) to validate the installation which it accepted and still working for 3 months and it keeps saying it is genuine thank god! but I cant be sure if it is genuine??

So the question is can I use the same Win Full version Disc to install on mulitple computers but need genuine Product keys? and what about the Product ID's and any other Validation problems. And if my main machine CPU board cannot accept another key what can I do?? because it took days to install apps and utilities as you can appreciate..or i am looking at a totall reinstall. I am really hoping somebody ( Guru) will take the time to read this and advise. Help would really be appreciated for sure.

Thanks to anybody that replies

Last edited:


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
Hmm... I think it's best if i just explain what the different licences mean..
Full: This means windows can be installed on any machine for as many times as you like as long as it's on one machine and one machine only. After 5 installs though validation will have to be completed by the phone method. (this is probably why you think the key is invalid which it isn't)
OEM: This install is tied to one machine only and cannot be moved with invalidating the licence. Also changing a major piece of hardware such as a motherboard will invalidate the licence as this is seen as a new computer.

Thanks for that ...Now I clone my drives every week and swap and change to make sure they are working and when I do that when I boot it request that I validate key...could that be the problem?? if it is I ahve a problem because I need to master my drives for security reasons..

Also why will activating by phone help when using the internet to verify key and returns invalid? also Microsoft support says it is an illegal key?



Last edited:


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
I guess if you took a drive out of a machine that's using an OEM licence then sure it's going to think you've changed hardware which invalidates the licence. Can you not check the drives using the machine that they're already connected to?
As for the 5 install limit (before you have to use phone activation) can look as if the licence has become invalid when in fact it has not. If your discussing a specific key that has become invalid, is it a OEM licence or a full one?


New Member
That's why I plopped down the extra cash for a full version of W7. MS has really tightened down the lid on W7 OEM versions. I know it's hard to do but you need to understand the license agreement before you go the cheap route and get an upgrade or OEM copy.

Since you're running at least two machines and so on. Just go get yourself a Microsoft TechNet subscription. There's new version available called: TechNet Standard and it's a $199 per year and you get licenses for all Microsoft products including Office.

Since you changed the mobo and CPU on the one system, call MS tech support and tell them a lightning strike hitting the power line fried them out and had to be replaced. They should give you a new validation code after that.

Windows 7 "Upgrade" version is NO different than the "Full Retail" version, the install DVDs are exactly the same it's the product key that is the difference. For people upgrading from XP this is NO OTHER way other than to do a full clean install. You CAN do a full install from the upgrade product key.

From Paul Thurrott's Super WinSite for Windows:
Clean Install Windows 7 with Upgrade Media

Yes, Virginia, you can do a clean install with Upgrade media.
Click the link above and read about it. I have done it for several clients who had XP installed previously on their systems.

I did a full wipe of the hard drive and started fresh. Once in the install window showing the hard drive, create new partitions and go from there.

I see you have posted this issue on several Windows 7 forums. Have you resolved the problem yet?

Last edited:
This website is not affiliated, owned, or endorsed by Microsoft Corporation. It is a member of the Microsoft Partner Program.