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PC died. Back to my laptop for a while. Question...

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1 year ago#1
Laptop is only a couple years old. i5-3210m with IHD 4000. Was a bargain at $400. I know I won't be gaming on this thing (except for Diablo II, baby!) but I had a question about formatting the hard drive and a clean Windows install.

I let my wife use the laptop for a while before I get her her own laptop. This thing definitely has some issues and some slowdown that never used to be here. I don't have much to lose (nothing I can't save on a thumb drive, transfer to the other laptop, and transfer back on after the Windows install afterwards) by wiping this thing clean.

My question is basically this: Since I don't have the original Windows discs or anything, can I just go to that magical Reddit thread (you know the one) where you can get Windows 7 for like $20 and I can do a clean install via thumb drive, or do I have to use the OEM key on the back of the laptop to use Windows 7 on this laptop?

I know the thumb drive has to have nothing but the Windows OS files on it and be formatted as a bootable USB drive and all that.

Perhaps a dumb question but I thought I'd ask before I go do it. Thanks.
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1 year ago#2
As long as you have a valid key you can pretty much install it any way you like. In fact if you can access the install somehow without buying Windows again (since you already have a valid key) I would recommend doing that.

If you want to waste your money on a new key, though, that's your business.
1 year ago#3
Just download the Win 7 ISO, use the CD to Thumb Drive tool, and use the code on the back of the laptop.

You can buy the windows for $20, but its not needed and $20 lol
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"All I have is my balls and my word, and I don't break them for anyone!"-Tony Montana
1 year ago#4
Magical Jelly Bean Key Finder can get your Windows CD key out of your registry if you don't have it.
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