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windows 7A few days ago a Web Talk reader named Tad Ensign, contacted me explaining how to perform  a full Windows 7 installation from an Upgrade. I have to tell you that at the time I was completely unaware of this issue and his brilliant solution left me amazed. Apparently, if you try to make a full installation of Windows 7 after formatting your hard drive, the system could return you with a message saying that the key is not valid…something like this: “The Software Licensing Service determined that this specified product key can only be used for upgrading not for clean installations” Here is the workaround to solve this issue. Thanks Tad!

  1. Install Windows 7.
  2. Do not Enter the product key during setup.
  3. Once setup has finished installing click on the Registry File Named MediaBootInstall.reg and it will Reset to a Full Retail Product. To create such a file, copy and paste the following code on your Windows Notepad. Name it MediaBootInstall and give it .reg extension.
  4. Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


  5. Click Start.
  6. In the Search field, type cmd and press Enter.
  7. In the Command Prompt, type In slmgr -rearm and wait for a message to popup. Reboot your Computer.
  8. Go to Product Windows Activation and enter your Product Key.
  9. Done, you just converted from upgrade to Retail install.

To know more, read this other post of mine.

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3 Comments to “How to Full Install Windows 7 after Formatting Hard Drive (Product Key not Valid Issue)”

  1. Running a clean Windows 7 installation from DVD upgrade media « Paul's Blog Says:

    […] when you’re going from Windows Vista 32-bit to Windows 7 64-bit. Anyhow, you’ll need the following article to finish the […]

  2. tblount Says:

    Even simpler… delet ei.cfg from the iso.. or use unetbootin and make a bootable usb install… then delete ei.cfg … when you install, it will ask you what version you want to install. Tell it the version you have the upgrade key for. …that’s it.. when it installs (on a clean hard drive) it takes the upgrade key without a complaint … and activates. NO messing around with the registry or rearm.

  3. mmg1818 Says:

    but when use upgrade have option for formatting partition C ?
    .-= mmg1818´s last blog ..Christina Applegate – Interview (Ellen 01.04.2009) HD-1080i =-.

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