Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Windows Advice

I have learned one important thing about Windows 7 in my time using it. I recently upgraded my laptop from Vista Home to 7 Professional. I own a license to install the program, but I have not been able to find the receipt for purchasing, which also contains the key. I installed the OS anyway, just as a trial version, hoping to find the key in the meantime. I found a trick online to reset the 30 day activation time window, so whenever I thought of it, I would reset the time, so that I would always be within the window.

Apparently it is only possible to reset that counter 3 times, giving you 120 days to activate the program. I did not realize that it had a finite number of times. I found the part in the registry where that counter is saved and changed the value in hopes of being able to reset again. That worked, in the sense that it no longer asks me to activate. I failed miserably in that Windows now thinks that it is counterfeit and constantly has to remind me of the benefits of purchasing legal software and that I might be a victim of software piracy.

So the lesson in all of this is simple: Don't lose your Windows CD key.