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These won't work with OEM keys supplied by the manufacturer. You would need to acquire your own key (enterprise, retail, etc.).

That is incorrect, at least for most retail OEM keys anyway.

I noticed that starting with Vista, the distinction between OEM vs Non-OEM key seems to have been reduced. This makes life easier when there is no recovery partition or the hard-drive is hosed. Whereas with XP, you did have to use an OEM version for the key to work.

I have not had any issue validating windows using the above versions of Win 7, as well as a few vista cds that I believe are retail, as long as there is an OEM sticker on the laptop. Every so often I have to call in and do the automated telephone activation, but they are valid CD Keys and I think that is probably tied to how often the key was activated.

Having said that, at least with Vista, the disc the manufacturer gives you is often locked to a specific laptop/bios/board.

>Every so often I have to call in and do the automated telephone activation

reason number 1001 why I hate windows

It takes exactly 30 seconds and it is fully automated. Punch in a string of numbers, hear back the activation code. No personal information, no humans involved. I too was dreading doing over the phone activation, but it was remarkably nice experience.

sure, they make it easy as possible, but it's not optional. And I like to change the hardware in my desktop, which makes it a pain.

>No personal information //

So, not your phone number, or the match of the given code with your computer's IP and usage when you go online?

They worked with three different OEM keys I had just fine, all from different manufacturers.

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