Windows 10 product key cheap: How to Get Windows 11 or Windows 10 for Free (or Under $20)

How to Get Windows 11 or Windows 10 for Free (or Under $20)

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You can spend thousands on components for building a PC, but it won’t boot without an operating system (OS). Linux is a viable option, but most prefer Windows because it runs all their favorite software, including the latest games. Obtaining a copy of Windows 11 or 10 for a built-from-scratch computer can be costly – if you don’t know what you’re doing. Microsoft charges consumers a whopping $139 for a Windows 10 or 11 Home license and $199 for Windows 10 or 11 Pro

This is profoundly unfair to PC builders, because large OEMs such as Dell and Lenovo likely pay a tiny fraction of that to put Windows on prebuilt systems (though these costs are not made public).  Fortunately, there are many ways to get Windows 10 or 11 for free or for as little as $18 , depending on what flavor of Windows you want, what you already have and what caveats you’re willing to accept. 

 How to Download Windows 10 or 11 For Free 

No matter how or whether you pay for it, you can download Windows 10 or download Windows 11 for free from And, in fact, you should only download it from Microsoft, as grabbing it from any other site or from a P2P network could give you malware. Microsoft offers a free media creation tool, which grabs the latest code from the Internet and then burns itself to a USB Flash drive or outputs a Windows 10 or Windows 11 ISO file you can write to a drive yourself. 

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Once that’s done, you can boot from your installation media and start the process. During installation, Microsoft asks you to enter a Windows 10 or 11 product key. If you don’t have a key, you can skip past this step by clicking «I don’t have a product key,» but there are drawbacks to using an unactivated copy of Windows, which we’ll talk about below.  

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Below, we’ll also show you the different methods for saving money on Windows and compare them. If you need a product key and don’t have one available already from an existing build or copy, you’ll want to check out method 5, which involves using a low-cost key marketplace.

1.  Upgrade from a Prior Windows Version: Free 

If you already have a prior version of Windows installed on the computer, you can likely upgrade it for free (obviously this method doesn’t help if you are building a new PC). Windows 7 and 8 will upgrade to 10 and Windows 10 will upgrade to 11, if your computer meets Windows 11’s stringent system requirements, which include TPM 2.0 support, at least 4GB of RAM and at least 64GB of storage space (you can bypass Windows 11’s TPM and RAM requirements but we don’t recommend it). 

If you are still on Windows 7 or 8, you can upgrade to Windows 10 for free. Whether you’re going from 7 / 8 to 10 or 10 to 11, you can upgrade either by using an install disk (created with the media creation tool) or with Windows update.  

2.  Use an Old Windows 7, 8 or 10 Key From Another PC: Free 

If you have an old, retail (non-OEM) copy of Windows 7, 8 or 10 you are no longer using on another PC, you can likely use the product key when you do a fresh install of Windows on your new PC. If you need help finding the product key on your old computer, there are several ways to find it, but using Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder, a free download, is probably the easiest.

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Note that if the product key comes from a prebuilt computer that came from the factory with Windows on it, it has an OEM key that may not work on a different new PC. Feel free to try it, though, because if it works you have Windows 10 or 11 for free.

If you are massively upgrading your own old PC build, replacing the motherboard and other internal components, try following Microsoft’s instructions for reactivating Windows 10 or 11 after changing hardware . Just make sure that you don’t use Windows on the old computer afterwards, because that key will already be in use.

3.  Don’t Activate Windows 10 or 11: Free

If you don’t have a valid product key, you can opt not enter one during the install process and live with an unactivated version. The good news is that you only have two serious disadvantages from not activating Windows 10 or 11. The first is that there’s an embarrassing (if someone is looking over your shoulder) watermark on the lower right corner of the screen, which says that you’re using a non-activated copy of Windows. 

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The second drawback of using unactivated Windows 10 or 11 is that you can’t use personalization options such as changing the wallpaper, mouse pointer or desktop theme. However, if you are using a Microsoft account that syncs with another computer on which you have custom wallpaper, that wallpaper will appear on your unactivated Windows. 

Microsoft blocks out your personalization options if you get Windows 10 for free and don’t activate it. 

You also can’t get tech support from Microsoft should you call for help with Windows. But come on; does anyone actually do that?

Other than those inconveniences, unactivated Windows should work just fine and receive automatic updates too. We’ve known folks who used unactivated Windows for months or years without a problem, but we can’t guarantee that Microsoft won’t crack down and limit functionality further in the future.

4. Microsoft Student or Teacher Discount: Free 

If you’re in college, you may be able to get Windows 11 for free, just by being enrolled. Microsoft offers students attending certain universities and high schools the ability to get Windows 11 Education at no cost (it’s unclear if you can get Windows 10 this way anymore). Windows 11 Education is actually more full-featured than Windows 11 Home and has most of the same features as Windows 11 Pro, including BitLocker encryption, Remote Desktop and Hyper-V virtualization. 

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Meanwhile, teachers may be able to get Windows 11 Education for $14.99. You can see if your school is eligible and download your free Windows 11 key here.  

5.  Buy a Cheap Windows 10 or 11 Key From a Third-Party Seller: $20+ 

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If you don’t have any way to get a Windows 10 or 11 product key for free and you don’t want to live with the drawbacks of an unactivated copy of Windows, there are some third-party sellers that offer keys starting at less than $20. At the time of writing, Kinguin, a popular key marketplace, was selling Windows 10 Home for as little as $18.22 or Windows 11 Home for $31.62 . Windows 10 Pro started at $20.90 and Windows 11 Pro was $34.30 .  These are all OEM keys and likely can’t be used on another computer after you activate them on the first one.

Windows 10 / 11 Product Key Prices (Kinguin) at Press Time
Version Price (USD)
Windows 10 Home $18.22
Windows 10 Home (Online Activation) $32.16
Windows 11 Home $31.62
Windows 10 Pro $20. 90
Windows 10 Pro (Online Activation) $35.37
Windows 11 Pro $34.30

Now, let’s address the elephant in the room. While we can’t vouch for all of them, websites selling cheap Windows 10 or 11 keys are likely offering legitimate codes. Kinguin has more than three dozen merchants worldwide selling Windows keys. Mark Jordan, Kinguin’s VP of communications, told Tom’s Hardware in 2019 that Kinguin’s merchants acquire the codes from wholesalers who have surplus copies of Windows they don’t need.

«It’s not a gray market. It would be like buying Adidas or Puma or Nike from a discounter, from TJ Maxx,» Jordan said. «There are no legal issues with buying it from us. It’s just another marketplace.»

Once you complete a purchase, you’ll be emailed a product key that you can use either during the Windows install process or to activate an unactivated copy of the operating system you already have installed. However, in some cases, these keys can only be activated by using Microsoft’s phone activation service so we recommend that you pay extra for keys that are specifically labeled as “online activation” keys, because the phone process is not anonymous.

Recently, we bought a Windows 10 Home key from Kinguin to activate a copy of Windows on a newly-built PC. The instructions on the product page warned that we might need to call Microsoft’s activation phone number to make the key work and, indeed, the first time we tried using the key, Windows wouldn’t accept it. So we tried calling the number and waited on hold for a few minutes. 

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We thought activating via phone would be an automated process where we just punched in the key and got an approval code, but instead we got a live representative who immediately asked for our Microsoft account ID. Though these are supposed to be legitimate keys and we shouldn’t get in trouble for using one, we were uncomfortable giving out personal information so we hung up and tried the key again and strangely it now worked. 

According to Jordan, Kinguin’s merchants have sold “several hundred thousand” keys and are not one-time sellers posting listings for codes they don’t want. As part of its fraud protection, a Kinguin employee randomly buys a key “every now and then” to make sure they’re legitimate, he said. Jordan added that it’s rare for a customer to get a key that’s been resold, but if they did, customer support would help them get a new one for free.

“If there’s ever a problem with a key being already activated or something like that, our customer support team helps you get a new key… And that merchant would be in deep trouble, so they are very careful with it,” Jordan said. 

If you’re not comfortable with buying from a key marketplace like Kinguin, you might think you’d be better off buying a slightly-discounted boxed or downloadable copy of Windows from Amazon or Newegg. However, both sites play host to a number of third-party sellers whose product keys may or may not be legit. 

At first glance, it looks like you can get Windows 10 Home for as little as $98 on a USB Flash drive from Amazon. However, if you look at the seller’s name, you might notice that it’s not Microsoft or Amazon but a third-party named UNILOVO and there are several complaints in the user reviews about the key not working. You can find Windows 11 Home on a Flash drive for $139 on Amazon and Microsoft is listed as the seller so that’s probably legit, but no cheaper than what charges.

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7.  Buy Windows from Microsoft: $139 — $199

The easiest but most expensive way to get Windows is to buy your key directly from You can get Windows 10 Home or Windows 11 Home for $139 . And you can get Windows 10 Pro or Windows 11 Pro for $199 . You can get these either as downloads or on USB drives. 

What’s the Best Way to Get Windows 10 or 11? 

Upgrade From Windows 7, 8 or 10 Don’t Activate Windows Student Discount Buy a Cheap Key From a Third Party Buy a Key From Microsoft
Price Free Free Free (Windows 10 Education) $18+ Home: $139, Pro: $199
Pros Access to all personalization options; Microsoft support access; Free Free Access to all personalization options; Microsoft support access; Equivalent to Windows 10 Enterprise; Free Access to all personalization options; Microsoft support access Access to all personalization options; Microsoft support access; Refunds
Cons None Desktop watermark; Personalization options restricted; Can’t use Microsoft support You have to be enrolled in an eligible school There’s a chance your key won’t work, and you’ll need to get customer service Expensive

If you have an old Windows key you can carry over from a previous build, that’s your best option and effectively gives you Windows 10 or Windows 11 for free. If you don’t have a key on hand, you need to decide whether you’re comfortable using an unactivated version of Windows 10 or 11, which limits your customization options, has an ugly watermark and leaves you ineligible for Microsoft support. 

Many would argue that downloading Windows without paying for or already owning a product key is ethically wrong. That said, Microsoft has made this process easier over various Windows iterations and lessened the limitations and nagging that happens when you don’t activate. The company isn’t trying to close this loophole, probably because it’s more interested in driving user numbers. We’ve even seen well-known vendors and Microsoft partners do press presentations with watermarks on their desktop.

If you need to buy a Windows 10 or Windows 11 key, you can save a lot with a low-cost seller such as Kinguin , although there’s always a chance your key won’t work and you’ll have to rely on customer service. We strongly recommend that you buy a key with online activation so you don’t have to explain yourself and give out personal info to a Microsoft operator.  

It’s hard to recommend paying MSRP for Windows 10 or 11, because Microsoft’s price is astronomically high. You can save $100 or more by buying a key from one of these third-party sites, which is money you can spend on one of the best graphics cards, one of the fastest SSDs or a few AAA games for your new PC.

Avram Piltch is Tom’s Hardware’s editor-in-chief. When he’s not playing with the latest gadgets at work or putting on VR helmets at trade shows, you’ll find him rooting his phone, taking apart his PC or coding plugins. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram developed many real-world benchmarks, including our laptop battery test.

Tom’s Hardware is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Visit our corporate site .

Future US, Inc. Full 7th Floor, 130 West 42nd Street,
New York,
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Windows 10 Pro Key OEM Preis

Veröffentlichung: 29/07/2015

Holen Sie sich einen günstigen Windows 10 Pro OEM Product Key!

Windows 10 pro ist die neueste Version des beliebten Betriebssystems. Nach den neuesten Updates präsentiert es eher eine angepasste Schnittstelle, die die Hardware des Geräts erkennt. Einfach gesagt, es ist ein System, das Sie auf jeder Art von Maschine verwenden können. Darüber hinaus ist es sicher und schnell: genau das, was Profis, Gamer oder Studenten brauchen , besonders wenn es mit dem neuesten Ms Office-Paket ergänzt wird.

Windows 10 verkörpert auch die Windows 7-ähnliche Startschaltfläche und das Startmenü, die in Windows 8 weggefallen sind. Aber was am wichtigsten ist, Windows 10 ist die perfekte Wahl für Gamer und professionelle Benutzer gleichermaßen.

Obwohl die „Pro“-Version dieses weltberühmten S0FTW4R3 entwickelt wurde, um professionellen Benutzern zugute zu kommen, wird kein Spieler enttäuscht sein, da der Windows 10 Pro-Spielmodus dazu beiträgt, dass Spiele schneller laufen, maximale Hardwareleistungen erzielen und die neuesten Grafiktreiber zur Unterstützung der High- Grafikkarten beenden.

Das bedeutet, ob Sie ein Profi sind, der effiziente Softwarelösungen benötigt, um Ihre Produktivität zu steigern, oder einfach nur nach einem leistungsstarken System suchen, um das Beste aus Ihrer Hardware herauszuholen und Ihre Spielergebnisse zu verbessern, ohne Ihr Budget zu sprengen, Windows 10 pro kann es alle Ihre Anforderungen erfüllen .

Mit Windows 10 werden Sie den Unterschied spüren, unabhängig davon, wie Sie Ihre Hardware verwenden. Kommen Sie vorbei und kaufen Sie noch heute Ihren Windows 10 Key.

Hauptvorteile des Wechsels zu Windows 10 Pro

Windows 10 Pro ist für den geschäftlichen Einsatz konzipiert. Hier sind einige der Geschäftsfunktionen, die Sie vom Professional OS erwarten können.

  • Sicherheitstools
    Windows 10 Pro wird mit einer Vielzahl von Sicherheitstools geliefert. Diese Tools sind einzigartig in der Professional-Version von Windows, da sie für Unternehmensbenutzer von Vorteil sind. Dies liegt daran, dass Unternehmensbenutzer möglicherweise vertrauliche Daten auf ihren Geräten haben, die sie privat halten möchten.
    Zusätzlich zum Datenschutz werden Unternehmensanwender mehr Netzwerke nutzen als Heimanwender. Das bedeutet, dass ihre Daten durch Cyberangriffe stärker gefährdet sind als der durchschnittliche Heimanwender.
    Während die Standardversion von Windows 10 Home mit grundlegenden Sicherheitsfunktionen ausgestattet ist, umfasst Windows 10 Pro Sicherheit auf Unternehmensebene. Dazu gehören Domänenbeitritt, Gruppenrichtlinienverwaltung, Bitlocker, Internet Explorer im Unternehmensmodus, Remotedesktop und Direktzugriff.
  • Geräteschutz
    Device Guard ist ein neues virtualisierungsbasiertes Sicherheitssystem. Dieses System unterstützt eine Vielzahl von Sicherheitsfunktionen auf Ihrem Gerät, einschließlich UEFI-Sperre und On-Device-Virtualisierung. Device Guard wurde für Sicherheit auf Unternehmensebene entwickelt und ist somit perfekt für die Bereitstellung in Unternehmen geeignet.
    Die Windows 10 Pro-Version verfügt über noch mehr integrierte Funktionen zur Stärkung der Netzwerksicherheit. Das bedeutet, dass Ihr Computer und Ihr Büronetzwerk sicher bleiben.
  • Verwaltungs- und Bereitstellungsfunktionen
    Es gibt einige in Windows 10 Pro integrierte Funktionen, die speziell für größere Unternehmen gedacht sind. Diese Funktionen erleichtern die Verwaltung einer schnellen Installation und Bereitstellung. MS hat dedizierte Software integriert, um Servermanagern und internen IT-Teams den Fernzugriff und die Konfiguration Ihres Systems zu erleichtern.

Häufig gestellte Fragen

Haben Sie noch ein paar Fragen zum Windows 10 Pro Key und wie man ihn aktiviert? Hier sind einige der am häufigsten gestellten Fragen.

  • Was ist ein OEM-Produktschlüssel?
    Ein OEM-Produktschlüssel ist ein eindeutiger Code, der vom Hersteller entwickelt wurde, um eine Kopie eines Programms zu zertifizieren. Dadurch weiß das System, dass die Software echt ist. OEM steht für Original Equipment Manufacturer
  • Wie kann ich MS Office außer dem billigen Windows 10 Pro-Schlüssel zu einem günstigeren Preis finden?
    Sie können günstige Windows 10-Produktschlüssel auf verschiedenen Marktplätzen kaufen, wo Sie Verkäufer mit viel niedrigeren Preisen finden, als Sie normalerweise auf der offiziellen MS-Website oder anderen Online-Shops sehen. Auf die gleiche Weise finden Sie auch Schlüssel für andere nützliche Software, einschließlich MS Office 2019 und MS Office 2021 .
  • Warum sollten Sie Windows aktivieren?
    Durch die Aktivierung von Windows wird das Aktivierungswasserzeichen entfernt, während das volle Potenzial von Windows 10 Pro freigesetzt wird. Dazu gehören die Sicherheitsfunktionen, die es zu einem so leistungsstarken Betriebssystem machen.
  • Wie aktiviert man Windows 10?
    Die Aktivierung von Windows war noch nie so einfach. Um Ihnen dabei zu helfen, schauen Sie sich gerne unseren ausführlichen Aktivierungsleitfaden an.
  • Rechtlicher Hinweis:
    OEM-Versionen (Original Equipment Manufacturer) bieten dem Käufer den großen Vorteil, die gleiche Software zu einem deutlich günstigeren Preis zu erwerben. In Deutschland ist der Kauf, Vertrieb und die Nutzung von OEM-Versionen völlig legal. Mit anderen Worten ist der Handel mit OEM-Versionen auch ohne Hardware rechtlich erlaubt.

    Das Bundesgerichtsurteil erlaubte den Verkauf von OEM-Versionen und DSP-Versionen ohne zugehörige Hardware.

    Aufgrund dieses Urteils dürfen Sie diese Version auf jedem Computer installieren und verwenden. Dies ist im Urteil des Bundesgerichtshofs vom 06.07.2000 — I ZR 244/97 dokumentiert und heißt es: Im Urteil vom 6. Juli 2000 hat der Bundesgerichtshof (BGH) entschieden, dass der Erschöpfungsgrundsatz nicht ausgehebelt werden kann Zulassungsbestimmungen der Hersteller (Az I ZR 244/97 — OEM-Entscheidung — Urteil in GRUR 2001, 153).

    Damals klagte Developer gegen den Weiterverkauf von sogenannter OEM-Software, die zum Zeitpunkt des Verkaufs vertraglich an neue Hardware gebunden war, aber vom Zwischenhändler isoliert worden war. Die Klage wurde abgewiesen. Der BGH stellte in seinem Urteil fest, dass die Weiterverbreitung wegen Erschöpfung des urheberrechtlichen Verbreitungsrechts kostenlos ist.

    Die angegebene Marke ist urheberrechtlich geschützt und dient hier nur der Produktbeschreibung.

    How to get Windows cheap (or even for free)

    Windows licenses are expensive—almost painfully so. Shelling out $139 for Windows 10 Home or $200 for Windows 10 Pro feels rough when Linux is free, since that much cash is easily a third of a budget PC build. Even if you want to run Windows 11, you’re best off getting a Windows 10 license on sale first, then upgrading to Windows 11 (and trying these 10 awesome Windows features that you probably don’t use, but should).

    Deal alert: The PCWorld Software Store frequently sells Windows 10 editions at reduced prices. Make sure to check our Home and Pro listings before settling for full price—at the time of publication, we were selling them for $50 and $70, respectively.

    But with less developer support for Linux, Windows 10 is an inescapable necessity for most of us. What’s not a given is paying full retail.

    Yes, it’s possible to snag a discount on Windows 10. The amount you’ll save depends on how much hassle you can tolerate—as well as your circumstances. If you’re lucky, you could technically get Windows 10 for free. Legitimately for free, since installing Windows 10 without ever activating it doesn’t count as getting a full, sanctioned copy of Windows.

    Here’s how, in several different ways.

    Packrat’s loophole: Try a Windows 7 or 8 key

    • Price: Free

    If you have an old Windows 7 or Windows 8 PC lying around, you may still be able to reuse its key to activate Windows 10.

    When Microsoft first launched Windows 10 back in 2015, it offered Windows 7 and Windows 8 users a truly free, no-strings upgrade to the new operating system. The promotion was only available for one year—presumably to accelerate Windows 10 adoption rates—and expired in July 2016.

    But even though Microsoft officially ended this program three years ago, it still has yet to completely shut everything down. The activation servers have been allowing Windows 7 and 8 keys on some Windows 10 installs.

    The Windows 7 or Windows 8 product keys that commonly work for this method are the retail and OEM varieties. Only sporadic success has been reported for volume license keys (i.e., enterprise or educational licenses) working with this loophole.

    While there’s no exact science for what works, the following guidelines take into account various data points floating around in articles, forums, and Reddit. First off, you’re limited to using keys for a specific version of Windows 7 or 8 with the equivalent in Windows 10. If you have a Windows 7 or 8 Home license, that will only work for Windows 10 Home. Windows 7 or 8 Pro only work for Windows 10 Pro.

    If using a Windows 7 or 8 key works for activation, a digital license will be issued to you.

    An additional rule of thumb is that you may need a retail product key if you’re doing a clean install of Windows 10 on a new computer. OEM product keys should work if you’re doing an upgrade or clean install of Windows 10 on the machine the Windows 7 or 8 license is tied to.

    If you don’t have your license key easily accessible, you can find it by using a program like Magical Jelly Bean Product KeyFinder. (Need help getting it to work? Use our step-by-step guide.)

    Once you have that on hand, you’ll enter it one of two ways: Either when prompted during the installation process if you’re doing a clean install, or through the “Change product key” option in the Activation section of Windows 10’s settings.

    If the product key is recognized, you’ll be issued a digital license that associates your machine with the key, so you should be good to go for the future if this method ever expires, as Microsoft had previously said it would.

    Easiest discount: An OEM license


    • Price: $110 (Windows 10 Home), $150 (Windows 10 Pro)

    Our next suggestion is a method that’s available to everyone and has the least amount of hassle: purchasing an OEM license.

    License types are different than operating system versions. They dictate what you can do with the software, while OS versions are distinguished by the features available. Multiple Windows license types exist, but the two commonly available to a home user are the retail and OEM varieties.

    When you walk into a store or pop over to Microsoft’s website, handing over that $139 for Windows 10 Home (or $200 for Windows 10 Pro) gets you the retail license. If you visit an online retailer like AmazonRemove non-product link or Newegg, you can find both retail and OEM licenses for sale. You can usually spot an OEM license by its price, which tends to run about $110 for a Windows 10 Home license and $150 for a Windows 10 Pro license.

    All the features of the operating system version are the same for both license types. The difference is that with a retail license, you can transfer the license key to a different PC later on.

    You can’t do that with an OEM license. In exchange for a lower price, you get to use the license key on only one PC, period. If you build a system but roll a new one four years later, you can’t transfer the license to the new machine.

    Also, if the hardware used to identify your system fails—namely, the motherboard—Microsoft’s registration servers won’t recognize your license as valid after you replace the dead part. Microsoft has historically been kind about such situations, however; you can usually call to reactivate the license after replacing a fried mobo. But it is an extra hassle.

    For further savings, you’ll have to wait for the rare sale or Black Friday, when you can get an OEM license in the neighborhood of $85 (Windows 10 Home) to $120 (Windows 10 Pro). Otherwise, if you want to shave down costs further, it’s going to take work—or a deep locus of calm when people criticize your life choices. (Skip down to “Low prices with a caveat” for details.)

    Deepest savings: The education discount

    • Price: $0 to $15 (Windows 10 Education)

    Not all student discounts are reserved for the under-24 set. Your local community college might be a source for a free or extremely discounted copy of Windows 10—and it’s nearly the equivalent of Windows 10 Enterprise, to boot. You’ll just have to put in some legwork (perhaps literally) to get it.

    As mentioned above, license types determine what you can do with Windows—and who can use it, as well. Through the Academic Volume Licensing agreements, schools can purchase access to Windows 10 Education for their students, faculty, and staff. Some make it available only on campus machines. Others will grant a license for use on a home machine.

    In that latter camp are a number of community colleges, and they often make the Windows 10 license free or supremely affordable (usually $15). The catch: You have to sign up for at least one course to qualify for campus discounts.

    The site your college uses to administer Windows licenses will vary. Many state schools use OnTheHub, which has a tool to look up your school.


    To get access to the software, you’ll typically need to register for your class first, then find and register separately at whatever online store your campus uses for software purchases. (Many community colleges use OnTheHub as their distributor, so you can use their lookup tool to begin research about your school’s options.) The storefront will require verification of your student status before you can “buy” Windows 10.

    A one-unit class usually counts though, and depending on your state, it can cost as little as $76 including administrative fees. Typical options are usually of the physical education or dance variety (swim, ballet, jazz, boot camp workouts, etc.), but you can also find the occasional class on topics like Beginning Drawing, Intro to HTML & CSS, and Video for the Web.

    If you were already planning on taking a class in one of these subjects, you’re getting an amazing deal. Windows 10 Education, which is similar to the enterprise version of Windows 10, includes popular Windows 10 Pro features like Bitlocker encryption and the Windows 10 May Update’s Sandbox feature. You’re essentially getting Windows 10 Pro (and then some) for as much as 60 percent off and you get to learn something new.

    Windows 10 Pro’s Bitlocker feature makes encrypting a drive a very easy process.

    Even if you aren’t interested in the classes, you’re still paying considerably less than what you would for even a Windows 10 Pro OEM license. We don’t encourage truancy, but there’s nothing saying you have to show up for class, so long as you’re comfortable with a failing grade on your record.

    Obviously, if your local community college doesn’t have an agreement with Microsoft in place, this strategy won’t work. Also, if the total cost of the class, administrative fees, and license fee adds up to more than the retail cost of a Windows 10 Pro license, and you wouldn’t have otherwise taken the class, that negates this deal, too. In those cases, your main options are the OEM license (outlined above) or buying through a reseller (detailed below).

    Note: If you use this method, also keep an eye out for other software deals through your school. For example, your school might offer a free Microsoft 365 account, or a heavily discounted Adobe Creative Cloud account (usually $20 per month, but we’ve seen it for as little as $80 per year).

    Low prices with a big caveat: Resellers


    • Price: Under $30 (Windows 10 Home and Pro)

    Scoring Windows 10 at an 85-percent discount (or more) is possible, and it’s not even difficult. But this approach comes with a salt mine of caution.

    Platforms like eBay and Kinguin allow buyers to purchase product keys from third-party sellers. Some sites, like Kinguin, specialize in digital software sales—to buy Windows 10, you’ll find the Windows 10 Home OEM or Windows 10 Pro OEM listings, pick a seller, then add their product to your cart and check out.

    What makes the license keys so cheap is that they’re gray market at best. In other words, the keys aren’t illegal, but they’re likely extras from a volume licensing agreement and not meant to be sold individually to home users. So they come with risk. Critics of this method rightly point out that you can buy keys that don’t work, or eventually lose their activation status because of their unknown origins. And that has happened to some people. Customer service is often poor for these kinds of sites too, leaving you high and dry.

    Fans of this method say many people never run into issues, and in fact urge you to find the keys as cheap as possible (usually through eBay) to minimize problems. You can also buy with a credit card for some added protection. If you go this route, you should only get Windows 10 Pro keys. The cost difference is often negligible from Home and you get better features like Bitlocker encryption and other Pro features.

    But what we actually recommend is to buy through reputable sources of cheaper keys instead. For example, some professional organizations are able to negotiate deals for their members—we suggest starting there. You can also check to see if your favorite media sites have special pricing for readers. PCWorld’s own software store is a good place to investigate—it offers retail Windows 10 Home and Pro keys at sizable discounts (sometimes as low as $50 for Home and $70 for Pro!), and those keys are guaranteed to work.

    How to Legally Get Windows 10 Key for Free or Cheap (2022)

    Windows 10 is by far the most popular desktop operating system in the world. In February of 2020, Windows 10 managed to cross over a billion users. However, we also know that Windows is the most pirated OS in the world. The reason behind its piracy is that users think that owning Windows OS is expensive. So to clear up the misconception, we have come up with this article where we share some easy ways to use Windows 10 without pirating it. In fact, you can use Windows 10 for free without buying a Windows 10 key. There are also many other ways to get a Windows 10 key at a much cheaper price. So, abstain from piracy as we show you how to get Windows 10 Key for free or cheap in 2022.

    Get Windows 10 Key for Free or Cheap in 2022

    There are many ways to legally obtain a Windows 10 key and we will discuss all of the methods in this section. You can jump to any section you find desirable. So without taking much time, let’s begin with the recommended method.

    Table Of Contents

    1. Get Free Windows 10 from Microsoft

    Two years back, Microsoft quietly made Windows 10 free to download, install, and use. However, the sad part is that users are still unaware of it. If you are looking for a Windows 10 key, the better alternative will be to use the free version of Windows 10 instead of buying a new license key. It comes with all Windows functionalities and you will get feature and security updates too. Basically, everything works similar to the activated Pro version.

    The only limitation is that you can’t personalize Windows appearance, but it hardly matters. Also, an “Activate Windows” watermark always appears on the bottom-right corner of the screen. However, both these limitations are actually not much of a big deal. There are no intrusive prompts forcing you to buy a Windows 10 key or any sort of lockout from your PC.

    Let me make it clear, there is no difference between the free and paid version of Windows 10 other than visual customization and “Activate Windows” watermark. You are absolutely free to use it, any way you want. Using the free Windows 10 seems a much better option than pirating Windows 10 Key which is most probably infected with spyware and malware.

    To download the free version of Windows 10, head over to Microsoft’s official website and download the Media Creation Tool. After that, you can download the ISO file and create a bootable USB. If you want a step by step guide, follow our tutorial here.

    2. Get Windows 10 Free or Cheap Through OnTheHub (For School, Colleges and Universities)

    To bring more students and researchers under the Microsoft ecosystem, the company has partnered with schools, colleges, and universities from many countries. Under this partnership, students can avail many Microsoft products at a discounted price or even free of cost.

    If you are a student at any educational institute, you can get a Windows 10 key, Microsoft Office 365, Oracle software and access to many other Microsoft goodies. Microsoft has a dedicated OnTheHub website for students where you can find all the details about the offerings.

    Just head over to OnTheHub page and scroll down to the bottom. Here, select your Country, State, and School. After that, it will provide you a WebStore link of your institute.

    Open the WebStore and you will find all the products offered by your institute. If your institute has included Windows 10 in the partnership program then you will find it here. Just search for Windows 10 and you are likely to get it. Do note that you must have an active email ID from your school, college or university to register on the portal. You will have to use your student email ID to finally obtain the Windows 10 key.

    3. Upgrade from Windows 7/8/8.1

    If you missed the Windows 10 upgrade period in 2016 and want to update your PC now then let me tell you the upgrade period has not ended. Also, you don’t need to buy a separate Windows 10 key to upgrade your PC. You can still upgrade your PC with your older Windows license and the activation works without any issue. Here is how you can do it.

    Download the Media Creation Tool from here and run it. Just choose “Upgrade this PC” option and click on “Next”. That’s it. The tool will download and upgrade your older Windows PC to Windows 10 without requiring a Windows 10 Key.

    If you want to check the activation after updating to Windows 10, navigate to Settings-> Update and Security-> Activation tab on the left pane. Here, you will find the activation status. This way you will save yourself from buying a new Windows 10 key.

    4. Get Windows 10 Key from Authentic Sources at a Cheaper Price

    If the free version of Windows 10 doesn’t cut for you or you are not a student anymore or you no longer have an old PC to upgrade then you can buy a new Windows 10 key at a cheaper price.  Here I will share some authentic sources from where you can get a genuine Windows 10 key at a much cheaper price.

    But before that, let me explain briefly the reason behind the low cost. You can get a Windows 10 key from Microsoft at around $200 which is generally called a retail license. A retail license can be used to activate Windows on one system to another as you upgrade your hardware over time. It basically follows you and remains with you.

    Whereas, cheaper license keys which you mostly find online are actually OEM keys that are tied to hardware and not you. Once you use an OEM key to activate a single system, it gets tied to the motherboard and it’s exhausted then and there. You can’t use the same license key again in case you replace your motherboard in the future or move to a new PC.

    These OEM keys are generally distributed to large companies in bulk so the prices are significantly low in comparison to the individual retail keys. As you can see, OEM keys are absolutely legal and are no different than retail keys. You can definitely go ahead and buy it. Now having cleared the confusion, let us find some great deals.

    There are many shady portals that offer Windows 10 keys for as low as $5 (₹500). However, most of them don’t work and are a complete scam. I suggest you to stay away from those shady deals. To make sure, you are buying from an authentic seller, follow these tips.

    Always look for the highest-rated seller and go through the reviews. Also, look for older sellers which have been on the platform for some time. Now having said all of that, here are the deals to go for.

    • Buy Windows 10 Key from Flipkart (₹2,500)
    • Buy Windows 10 Key from eBay ($19.99)

    Note: The Windows 10 Key on eBay regularly gets sold out. So, if our link is not working just search for Windows 10 Key on eBay buy from a trusted seller.

    Many people suggest to buy Windows 10 keys for cheap, but I would not really recommend it. There have been many instances of credit card fraud to buy cheap keys which are later sold on After the fraud is reported, the keys are revoked by Microsoft. So to put it straight, always buy the Windows 10 OEM keys from authentic sources.

    5. Buy Windows 10 Key from Microsoft

    If you want a clean copy of Windows 10 without any question of legitimacy, you should buy a retail Windows 10 key directly from Microsoft. Just head over to Microsoft’s page and buy it without any hesitation. If you are a student, you can avail some discounts. As for the price for general users, the Windows 10 Home Edition costs $139 and Windows 10 Pro Edition costs $199.99. Similarly, Windows 10 Home is priced at ₹9,299 and Windows 10 Pro costs ₹14,799 in India.

    6. Windows 10 Volume Licensing

    If you run a business and need Windows 10 on multiple machines then it would be better to go through Volume Licensing to procure Windows 10 keys in bulk. It will be much affordable and easier to manage all your Windows 10 machines. Having said that, there is no fixed price to get volume licenses and you will have to negotiate with Microsoft to get a better deal. But generally, the cost gets reduced to more than half (~$80) of what you pay for retail keys. You can learn more about Windows 10 Volume Licensing from here.

     7. Download Windows 10 Enterprise Evaluation

    If you want to try out Windows 10 before going for volume licensing, you can download the Windows 10 Enterprise Evaluation for free. Keep in mind, this is not for individual users but targeted to mid to large size organizations. On top of that, it’s designed for IT professionals who want to evaluate if Windows 10 can help the organization manage businesses, networks, and devices. You can try out Windows 10 Enterprise Evaluation for 90 days and can get started from here.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q. Why Buy Windows 10?

    Under the free version, you can’t customize your PC’s appearance, access tools like Group Policy Editor, and other organizational software. For individuals, buying Windows 10 is not necessary, but if you are a professional and need all the tools then buying Windows 10 is highly recommended.

    Q. Are Cheap Windows 10 Keys Legal?

    So far, Microsoft has not taken a staunch position on the legality of cheap Windows keys. However, what I can say is cheap Windows 10 keys are not entirely illegitimate. The keys are procured by organizations and later sold to third-party sellers for a much lower cost. Apart from that, in some countries, the keys are quite cheaper so you get it at an affordable price.

    Q. How Much Does a Windows 10 License Cost?

    As I mentioned above, the Windows 10 Home Edition costs $139 and Windows 10 Pro Edition costs $199.99. However, you can find a better deal on Amazon or other online stores. Just make sure to check the authenticity of the seller before placing an order.

    Q. What About OEM Copies of Windows?

    OEM copies of Windows are entirely legitimate and you can use it without any issue. Just that when you switch to a new machine, you can’t transfer the license key.

    Q. How Can I Get a Windows 10 Key for Cheap?

    We have mentioned 7 different ways to get Windows keys for cheap so go through all the points. You can find some sweet deal from section #4.

    Q. Can I Just Buy a Windows 10 Product Key?

    Yes, you can get it from Microsoft Store. Go through section 5 for more details.

    Q. Is Windows 10 Illegal Without Activation?

    No. Microsoft now allows users to use Windows 10 for free and without the need to activate your PC. Just that, there will be a watermark and some customization features will be disabled under the free version. You can use an inactivated Windows 10 for as long as you want.

    Q. How do I Activate Windows 10 Without a Product Key?

    You can’t activate Windows 10 without a product key. However, you can buy the license key for cheap from the portals mentioned above.

    Q. How Can I Get Windows 10 for Free?

    If you don’t mind the watermark and the lack of customization feature then you can easily get Windows 10 for free. Just follow section #1 of this article and you can use Windows 10 for free.

    Buy a Cheap Windows 10 Key and Activate Your PC

    So that was our complete guide on how to find Windows 10 key for free or at a much cheaper price. You can go through the article and choose the best method for activating your PC. Personally, I have no problem using the free version of Windows as it allows me to do every single thing of importance.

    Besides that, I have mentioned the other options as well so go through them. You can also buy cheap Windows 10 keys from Flipkart. It works pretty well and without any issues. So that will be all from our side. If you still have some questions, you can let us know in the comment section below. We will try to clear up your doubts.

    Windows 10

    How to Upgrade Windows 10 Home to Pro Using an OEM Key

    While Windows 10 Home already comes with a suite of extra features compared to Windows 8.1, including the digital voice assistant Cortana and Virtual Desktops, Windows 10 Pro offers greater connectivity and privacy tools.

    If you want to take advantage of tools like Bit-locker for disk-encryption and Assigned Access for locking user accounts or to connect to a Windows domain, you may want to upgrade to from Windows 10 Home to Pro.

    But, first, let’s first see where you can get Windows 10 Product Key

    Best Website to Buy Windows and Microsoft Office for Cheap and Securely


    Compare Windows 10 Home Vs. Pro

    Let’s break down the differences between the versions of Windows 10 — Home vs. Pro — to help find the best fit for your needs.

    Note: Check out our product offerings to see which Windows 10 version checks all of your boxes.

    Windows 10 Home Vs. Pro

    If you don’t have time to read to the end, watch this video:

    Windows 10 Home Vs Pro: Which one is best for you? (2021)

    Getting Windows 10 via Insider Preview

    Getting Fall Creators Update Build 1709 using Windows Insider Preview requires you to register with This may require a Microsoft account.

    Windows 10 updates will not affect the OS key itself. You can keep working as you always have, with the latest Windows 10 features, programs, and features at your fingertips. You can stop receiving future updates at any time by going to the familiar Windows 10 Insider submenu and clicking the Stop Getting Insider Preview Builds button. «.

    The main thing is to understand the cause of the problem. Sometimes Microsoft itself becomes the culprit of the error. But whatever the reason, restoring Windows 10 activation is easy if you know how.


    Methods for recovering a failed Windows activation

    What actions should be taken when Windows activation constantly flies? Today we will consider this problem on two versions of the OS at once: Windows 10 and Windows 7. We will develop such methods, after which you will not face a similar problem in the future.

    The main point that decides which way to move on is the type of OS: licensed or pirated. In the first case, the developers have thought of everything in advance: there must be a special key on your PC or on the installation disk, after entering which you will successfully pass the test, and the program will no longer disturb you. If for some reason it is not possible to find the key, then the user can easily turn to Microsoft for help, where experienced employees will tell you the next steps.

    The situation with pirated Windows is quite different, even if it does not differ from the official version. If you are the happy owner of the key, even if you installed a pirated version, then after overcoming the check, the OS will turn into a licensed one. In general, many installation packages from the network are already activated, but recently Microsoft decided to start a war. The company invented the update «KB971033». Subsequently, activation flies, and the cunning user is urged to register.

    Do not worry, there are simple ways out of this situation, about them below.

    Reasons for termination of Windows activation

    To begin with, why activation on the seven flies. The keys found by the owner via the Internet will not necessarily work. Most likely, this will happen after the introduction of the fifth code. All this is because Microsoft tracks violators and blacklists such keys. It may also be that the key is simply expired or is a trial OS code. And the last point: some developers stick an important addition to the automatic update. Its purpose is to authenticate.

    Now let’s move on to the higher OS. First, as usual after installing a new version, the system will require the user to enter a key. As you understand, this process is carried out with the aim that the copy does not spread to countless PCs. Secondly, if you decide to replace one of the components of your iron friend (processor, motherboard or RAM), then a dozen will ask you to enter a key. This is its main difference from other versions. Windows 10 is linked to the PC ID by hardware. Therefore, already in this state of affairs, you will have to call Microsoft.

    Restoring activation

    Based on the reasons described above, we have divided the solutions.

    If you have the code

    When you have lost the activation of licensed Windows 7 or 10, you will need a few seconds to restore it. Enter the key and that’s it.

    When replacing components

    But what to do if Windows activation failed when replacing parts?

    It happens that the user changed the motherboard, and after that, as it turned out, the activation of Windows 10 or Windows 7 failed. If we are talking about the seventh version, then everything is extremely simple here, since the key can be entered an unlimited number of times.

    With the tenth OS, things are a little different. As we have already reported, a dozen license is tied to a specific user and PC, and a personal identifier is also assigned to the computer. Due to the fact that the ID number is made up of the main components of your installation, after replacing one of the important parts, the user must, as it were, prove that he did not purchase a new PC and can still use his license. Of course, if you decide to upgrade your computer mouse, then you don’t have to do anything, this only applies to serious details, such as the motherboard.

    Now the whole procedure is automated, so you only need to take the following steps:

    During your attempt to fix the error, the system will check if you are the real owner of the license and if you have already tried to fix the error so far. In any case, if you are denied recovery, then call technical support.

    Features of solving the activation problem on Windows 10

    Separately, it is worth considering the situation with the most current version of Windows 10.

    There are several options for how to restore the system if the activation of Windows 10 suddenly crashed. The most common of them are as follows:

    Next, you need to separately consider several effective and efficient solutions for an emerging problem.


    It is not uncommon for a user to lose activation of Windows 10 after an OS update and he does not know what to do next.

    In fact, when the operating system is updated and installed, there is a process of re-checking the activation of the system. If at this moment the connection is lost, the Internet connection is broken, it is impossible to exclude failures when checking the license key.

    In such a situation, it is recommended to try the following:

    This method will work provided that the user has a Microsoft account. It takes very little time to create a profile there. You will also need to identify yourself. To do this, use a mobile phone or email address.

    Using the Slui.exe module

    If the user’s Windows 10 activation constantly crashes and does not want to work normally, you can use the special Slui.exe application.

    It is important to note here that we are talking about an integrated application that is inside the Windows 10 operating system. You do not need to download and install it separately. The module is activated automatically. It supports the activated status of the OS.

    The application is running in the background. It automatically not only starts, but also shuts down. Work parameters are registered in the scheduler and protection in integrated levels.

    It happens that Slui cannot be found when starting the task manager. You can start the process with command C:/Windows/System32/slui.exe .

    To activate a crashed OS using Slui, you need to:

    The task is not difficult, because every user will surely be able to cope with it.

    When crashing after updating or reinstalling the system

    Have you already regretted the decision to update the operating system? After updating Windows 7 to Windows 10, there are cases with bugs such as an activation rally. Here is a detailed step-by-step guide to system recovery:

    After restarting the PC, it only needs to be activated again. There are specific applications for such operations. Their work proceeds under the condition that the antivirus is turned off, due to the fact that they interact with system files. Below we will provide a list of programs that have been checked in advance: using a dedicated application.

    The Media Creator Tool was specially created by Microsoft developers to migrate from old operating systems to newer and newer operating systems. Currently, this is a transition from Windows 7 or 8 to Windows 10.

    You do not need to use flash drives or installation discs here. The algorithm of actions is as follows:

    On average, unpacking and installation takes about 15–20 minutes. As soon as the user welcome screen appears, the process is complete.

    To log into the account that the user created earlier, you only need to provide your own secret password.

    Insider Preview Utility

    Users have another activation tool at their disposal. With Insider Preview, you can get your hands on the new build of the OS. But here you have to register on the official Insider Windows server. It is important that the user has an account with Microsoft.

    To restore activation, you need:

    If we are talking about official OS updates, they should not affect the key in any way.

    Recovery point

    When the user’s activation for Windows 10 has failed, and the system should be restored as soon as possible, using an access point will be a good solution.

    Here you need to do the following:

    After that, the OS will throw back some time, and the activation will not fail.

    That, perhaps, is all. Failed activation is not a serious problem. Unfortunately, even at Microsoft, sometimes they don’t know why Windows 10 activation fails for users. They need time and resources to fix bugs and errors.

    We are confident that you will be able to cope with it on your own, of course, not without the help of our tips. We hope that the information was useful to you. Leave comments below.


    Windows 10 license lost. How to recover the key??

    Good evening, as the name implies, I lost the sticker I paid for. There is a check, I did not have time to install and maintain the key.

    Communicated with support, they promised to send instructions to restore the key. (I repeat, it is not installed to go into Windows and you can’t see something.) They couldn’t see the mail correctly! Didn’t receive instructions!

    How can I recover a lost key? (It’s hard to call to be connected with the operator, you need 111011110112121011) and as you can see, it’s useless.
    But you can restore as I understand, there is a short number in the checks. Network of stores DNS.

    Report abuse

    Replies (8) 

    Good afternoon.
    Yes, your problem can be solved.
    During business hours, call the toll-free number in Russia 8 800 200 8002, wait for a response from a Microsoft activation center engineer.
    You will definitely be helped with activation.

    Life hack. Don’t press 1,2, don’t press anything. After a while, the robot itself will switch the call to the operator.

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    Good evening, as the name implies, I lost the sticker I paid for. There is a check, I did not have time to install and maintain the key.

    Communicated with support, they promised to send instructions to restore the key. (I repeat, it is not installed to go into Windows and you can’t see something.) They couldn’t see the mail correctly! Didn’t receive instructions!

    How can I recover a lost key? (It’s hard to call to be connected with the operator, you need 111011110112121011) and as you can see, it’s useless.
    But you can restore it, as I understand, there is a short number in the checks. Network of stores DNS.

    OEM stickers are not legally sold separately. They are sold by scammers:

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    No, without cunning, oem is sold with a ready-made dexp pc, I just bought a pc, windows and a 2nd rgb case. where does the iron go? legal?)

    Specify in what form you bought Windows (list everything except the sticker)?

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    C COA

    Protective measures. Certificates of Authenticity should never be sold, shipped, or purchased separately without a connected computer. They also cannot be sold with bundled Microsoft software (full boxed product or Microsoft OEM software purchased by system builders). Don’t be a victim of offline certificate of authenticity scams.


    If you lost your Windows 10 license key

    You may need a Windows 10 license key to restore the OS or transfer it to another drive or PC. CHIP will tell you how to find the key in the system using special utilities and how to take care of the Windows recovery disk.

    Modern PCs in most cases already come with Windows 10 (Home or Pro) activated. At the same time, the manufacturer does not think about restoring the OS, without attaching either a boot disk or a license key to the device. CHIP will tell you how to find it yourself and where to download the recovery disk.

    First of all, it should be emphasized that if you already had registered Windows 10 on your computer, then reinstalling it, in the event of a system failure or just need to transfer the OS to another disk, will not require an activation key. Even if the program asks you to enter a key during installation, click the line «I do not have a product key» (this is a Microsoft recommendation). After installation and connection to the Internet, the system will automatically activate itself.

    The license key may be required if you have replaced the motherboard or several components at the same time, for example, a video card and a hard drive.

    Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder

    In order to extract information about the key from the system, you need a special legal utility Magical Jelly Bean Keyfinder (free of charge). It can read license keys for Windows and other software.

    Ultimate PID Checker

    You can also use the Ultimate PID Checker utility to check your licenses. But this program is useful only for versions of Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 and 8 / 8.1, including all options.

    In addition, the utility analyzes the MAK (Multiple Activation Key) counter, which documents the possibility of activating a multi-user license.

    If the licenses are in a text file in TXT format, Ultimate PID Checker can also check multiple Windows keys at the same time.

    Win Product Key Viewer

    You can also use the Windows Product Key Viewer utility to read Windows license keys.

    If for some reason you, having a license key for Windows 10, cannot activate it, then you should shamelessly contact Microsoft support by calling the toll free number 8 800 200 8001.

    How to get an official Windows 10 image for a recovery disc

    As practice has shown, even if you made a system recovery disc using the built-in Windows 10 tools in advance, in difficult cases when the previous system did not save the required information, this disc will not work and will throw an error.

    The only option is to clean install the system to a disk from the original Widnows 10 bootable installation disk. You can download the ISO image by running the MediaCreationTool utility.

    But that’s not all. If you do not have a DVD drive in your laptop or PC, then you will have to install the system from a USB flash drive, and it must be formatted in FAT32. This is due to the UEFI security system.

    To create a bootable USB flash drive with a Windows 10 installation image, we recommend using the special Rufus utility, in which you can specify the desired file system.


    How to find the activation key for Windows 7, 8 and 10

    Table of Contents

    Table of Contents

    System reinstallation, an unexpected crash, and a plain illegible sticker can be a hassle if you ever need to restore your Windows license key. You should not despair: scripts and numerous programs designed to obtain the desired key will come to our aid.

    Let’s look at several ways to find a 25-digit activation key, where each user, regardless of the version of Windows OS they use, be it version 7, 8 or 10, will find the most suitable option for themselves.

    VBS script

    Let’s start with a couple of the simplest methods that do not require the installation of any third-party software. To implement the VBS script, we need to create a simple text document. After that, we add the following script text to it.

    Set an arbitrary name for the file, add the extension «.vbs», then in the sub-item «File type» select the value «All files» and save.

    We just have to run the created script by double clicking the mouse. A window with a license key will appear. Clicking on the «OK» button will display more detailed information — the product ID and the full version of Windows. Pressing the OK button again will close the script.


    To implement the script using PowerShell, you need a file created in Notepad and run as administrator. We add the appropriate script to it.

    Save the file: set a name and add «.ps1», file type — «All files». We select the directory of the local drive «C» as the save location.

    Next, we need to run the created script. To do this, right-click on the «Start» button and select «Windows PowerShell (Administrator)». In the window that opens, enter the command:

    To confirm the command, enter the letter «Y». It remains to enter the path to the script, in a particular case it looks like this:

    If you did everything correctly, the product name, ID and key will appear on the screen.

    To save the key to a separate file, enter the letter «Y» and confirm. A corresponding text file named «WindowsKeyInfo» will appear on your desktop.

    After obtaining the key, you can restore the default settings of the script execution policy. You only need to enter the following command:

    Confirm this procedure with «Y» and close the application with «Exit».

    If Windows was pre-installed on your PC, the embedded OEM key in the UEFI of the motherboard can be seen using the following command:


    Let’s move on to specialized programs. Produkey is a simple utility designed to display the keys and IDs of various programs. After downloading Producey, just click on the program icon to open the main window.

    In addition to the Windows key, we will also receive information about other installed products — Office and Explorer. The corresponding columns contain information about the installation location, modification date, PC name, and product ID.


    ShowKeyPlus is similar in functionality to the previously reviewed ProduKey program. After downloading the application, we get into a window where several sub-items are located on the left side, and information about the system is displayed on the right side. There are already familiar product IDs, Windows versions and, of course, the key.

    A feature that saves information about the activation key in a separate text document will be very useful.

    To do this, click on the “Save” tab, then select the name of the file to be saved and the type. In addition to the standard text file, the document is available in Word and Excel formats.

    Free PC Audit

    Free PC Audit has extensive tools for getting information about your PC. Here we will find both installed applications and currently operating processes, and detailed information about each component of the PC.

    Naturally, the developers of this utility did not ignore the operating system. By going to the «System» tab, we will find information about the PC name, ID and key of the installed Windows.

    In addition to this, you can find out the OS version and installation date. To copy the product key, just select the appropriate item and press the key combination «Ctrl + C».

    AIDA64 Extreme

    The well-known AIDA64 Extreme program allows you not only to control the temperature of components and conduct system stress tests, but also to obtain the coveted Windows license key.

    After installing the application, just go to the «Operating system» tab. The information of interest to us will appear in the right window. In addition to the product key, AIDA64 Extreme shows the operating system ID, user and computer name, as well as the OS version and installation date.

    Items mentioned

    The price of Windows has certainly become unaffordable.

    There is a free Linux, no worse, only it’s a different world.

    This is the right world. I’ve been on it for 20 years now.

    Not suitable for work PCs. There, the software is often specific, all sorts of 1C, accounting programs, an office with macros. Devices: barcode scanners, scanners, printers. Not suitable for gaming PCs either, there are games. For video and photos, too, is not suitable, there you need adobe. But for Internet machines and servers, it’s quite for itself.

    have long been distributions for mac and linux

    1C we will omit the topic, but there is still a bunch of software for all kinds of reporting nearby. In small organizations, this is a whole zoo of programs for boos. And all under Windows. Under Linux, even sometimes there are no firewood for the periphery. And we must take into account that in such organizations, as a rule, there is no IT specialist. The transition from win 7 to win 10 sometimes causes a stupor for users. Although in fact there is nothing complicated. You just need to put in some effort. But you will not believe, they will not apply. They will demand training, which they will immediately forget. There are very few users who want to think something. The bulk can only launch shortcuts from the desktop. This is especially true for large organizations.

    Maybe so, I have not been interested in Linux for 20 years already. I remember how at first he only appeared in ASP, and then he didn’t really track it. But if so, then this is only a plus.

    Because training needs to be done, and it is not compatible in format and other things completely with Microsoft Office. In fact, in organizations, license fees are minuscule. Free software is more expensive, because there are additional. expenses.

    organizations always pay, in some organizations “cheap for a specialist, but expensive for software, for example, for Win server + MS SQL”, in others “expensive for a red-eyed, but save on software by installing * nix + PostgreSQL »

    And it’s cheaper, now, to go out for one red-eye than for software, but not all large organizations go for it, for unknown reasons. Although there are large ones and they pay the red-eyed man not sickly.

    Yes, everything there has long been compatible in formats and documents open and edit any.

    Free, then it is free. Only now, its use in our realities will take a lot of effort and, as a result, funds. There were such experiments in our large organization. They tried to transfer one division to Linux 10-15 years ago. As a result, the experiment ended in nothing. Now they don’t remember him. He himself also made such attempts, but on a small organization (medical center). The result is similar.

    10-15 years ago there were no such Linux technologies as now. For example, to manage the entire fleet of computers at once. Now everything has become much easier. Progress does not stand still.

    There are no more Linux specialists. There is also no demand for them. And the share of computers on Linux is unlikely to have changed much. There are some glimpses. Developers find a niche, make a web application, put a server on a riot and cut coupons. But it is very specific and small. But I judge by province.

    I don’t understand at all why the discussion moved to the plane of corporate application. Personally, I don’t give a damn about this. Once I once again put another Linux distribution on my home computer and I felt good and comfortable. And I don’t even want to look at Windows, let alone pay some money out of my pocket for it. By the way, the distribution is called «Pop_OS!». I recommend. Nothing superfluous, a lot of software, everything is set up and works out of the box without a file.

    It did not go anywhere, the topic is generally about Windows. In the plane of home use of computers, I personally have not met a single Linux user. Among the people I know, there is not a single one who would use Linux at home. No one. Although I tell everyone that for home use, if toys are not needed, then Linux is very good. Linux is still found in the corporate sector. Servers, network, databases.

    But to use Linux at home, you need to learn it and put in some effort. And a person must do it himself. I will never put Linux on someone, campaign for him. You yourself wanted it, you yourself set it up and deal with it yourself. There was a time when I was interested in it and I dealt with it. But now he has already jumped, because it is not in demand. And for me, as an IT specialist, this is just a waste of time. Linux used, for the general development. I don’t need to buy Windows. I have it officially. It always works for me perfectly (ttt), as well as Linux. I see no point in comparing and being an apologist for something. I can and have used anything. CP/M, DOS, System 5, BSDI, Novell, etc.



    How to find out the product key of Windows 10, 8, 7 on a computer and laptop

    How to find out the key of Windows installed on a computer and laptop

    HOW TO GET A WINDOWS 10 LICENSE KEY FOR FREE | How to Activate Windows 10 Free

    Your Windows 10 license is expiring | How to solve the problem | working way 2020 |

    Is it possible to recover the Windows key on the sticker?

    Tired of a pirate? Windows license recovery, reactivation.

    Activate Windows 10 forever for free in 2 minutes

    How to transfer, save the license (product key) of Windows 10 to another computer or drive

    Activate Microsoft Office 2019 for free

    How to find out the Product Key in Windows 10 | How to find your Windows 10 Key

    How to change your windows 10 product key read


    • 1 How to transfer licensed Windows 10 to a new computer
    • 2 How to activate Windows 10 on a new PC
    • 3 Transferring a Windows 10 license to another PC.
    • 4 Universal key for Windows 10
    • 5 How to change the Windows 8 key (windows 7, windows 10)
    • 6 How to manually activate Windows 10
    • 7 How to change the activation key in Windows 10 via command line | Useful tips for Windows 7/8/10
    • 8 See also


    You might be interested in: How to view your Windows 10 product key.

    Activation is a protection mechanism implemented in Windows 10 and earlier to combat piracy. Activation first appeared in Windows XP and has since existed with various changes and improvements in Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10. Windows licenses are not cheap. The money spent on purchasing a new official key from Microsoft can be compared to buying a solid state drive (SSD). And buying cheap keys from dubious sites is not a good idea.

    The good part is that you can deactivate Windows 10 on a device you no longer use and transfer the license to a new computer.

    How to transfer licensed Windows 10 to a new computer

    Activation verifies that your copy of Windows is not being used on more devices than the license allows. If you’ve decided to sell or donate your computer, but want to keep your Windows 10 installed while keeping the activation, it’s a good idea to unlicense your old computer. This guide will also be helpful if you want to use the product key on another PC.

    To disable Windows 10 activation by deleting a product key, follow these steps:

    1. Open command prompt as Administrator.
    2. Run the following command:
     slmgr.vbs /upk 

    1. Wait for the command to do its job. You will see the following message: «Windows 10 key removed.»
    2. Restart your computer.

    To check, go to the page « Settings» → «Update and Security» → «Activation» — by looking at the current activation status.

    After deactivating Windows 10, you may be interested in clearing the product key from the registry, this is not a mandatory item, use it as a precaution.

    Run the following from the command line:

     slmgr.vbs /cpky 

    If you did everything right your old PC will be deactivated. Everything will be the same as after installing Windows without a key. The operating system will work, with some restrictions — for example, personalization of the desktop. Windows 10 EULA prohibits the use of the OS without activation. To activate Windows, you need to enter a new key, or buy it in the Windows Store.

    How to activate Windows 10 on a new PC

    Please note that if you try to enter a key that has not been deactivated on another device, you will not be able to activate your copy of Windows and will be prompted to renew your license.

    To activate a new PC using slmgr, open a command prompt as an administrator and run the following command:

     slmgr.vbs /ipk #####-#####-#####-#####-##### 

    Where #### is the new product key.

    Note: This only works if the product key matches the OS version you are using. If you have a Windows 10 Pro key and Windows 10 Home is installed, the system will upgrade to Pro automatically.

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    —> Home » Windows 10 » How to change windows 10 product key read

    Transfer Windows 10 license to another PC.

    Activation is a protection mechanism implemented in Windows 10 and earlier to combat piracy. Activation first appeared in Windows XP and has since existed with various changes and improvements in Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10. Your copy of Windows is genuine only if it is successfully activated. There are times when you need to deactivate your copy of Windows 10 if you need to transfer your license to another PC.

    Here’s how you can disable your copy of Windows 10. Activation verifies that your copy of Windows isn’t being used on more devices than the license allows. If you’ve decided to sell or donate your computer, but want to keep your Windows 10 installed while keeping the activation, it’s a good idea to unlicense your old computer. This Disable will also be useful if you want to use the product key on another PC.

    This article will show you how to deactivate Windows 10 by removing a product key. In addition, we will see how to install another product key. To disable Windows 10 activation by deleting a product key, follow these steps:

    1. Open an elevated command prompt.
    2. Type or paste the following command:

    slmgr /upk

    1. Wait for the command to do its job. You will see the following message:

    That Windows 10 activation has been removed.

    To check, go to the Settings Update and Security page Activation by looking at the current status.

    After deactivating Windows 10, you may be interested in clearing the product key from the registry, as it can be viewed by special applications or scripts.

    Keep in mind that if you reach the limit of online activation, for example, by activating the system on several computers with the same key, you can activate your copy of Windows by phone, as online activation will fail.

    To install a new product key, you must enter the following command at a command prompt as Administrator:

    slmgr -ipk xxxx-xxxx-xxxxx-xxxx Where xxxx is the new product key.

    Universal key for Windows 10

    Please note that these keys can be used to evaluate, test, and install the following editions of Windows 10.

    New PCs with Windows 10 installed for end consumers are generally available in two editions: Home and Pro. The Home version — the home edition, of course, is inferior in its capabilities to the Pro version — this is the Group Policy Editor, Remote Desktop, Internet Explorer in Enterprise Mode, Restricted Access Mode, Hyper-V. etc.

    If you decide to upgrade your Windows 10 operating system from Home to Pro using a Master Key.

    The process of migrating from Home Edition to Professional Edition is very simple and even fast: during the upgrade process, all your files, installed applications and programs remain intact.

    How to upgrade from Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Pro using a Windows 10 Generic Upgrade Key.
    1. Open Windows Settings by using the Win + I keyboard shortcut or by clicking the gear icon in the Start menu.
    1. Go to Update and Security Center
    2. In the left part of the window, click on the Activation section
    3. In the window that opens, find and click on the link Change product key
    1. You will be prompted to enter the key for the edition of Windows 10 you want and click Next.

    1. In the next window, click Run Update

    1. The update will take some time, after which your device will reboot

    Buying a license to upgrade to the professional version is a good idea, but there is a way to upgrade from Home to Pro edition without buying a license first, but leave this question for later.

    After the upgrade, when you activate your OS, you will need to change the Generic Product Key to the actual key you purchased.

    By entering the following or your own key, you can change the edition of Windows 10:

    • Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Pro
    • Windows 10 Pro to Windows 10 Education
    • Windows 10 Pro to Windows 10 ProfessionalEducation
    • Windows 10 Pro to Windows 10 Enterprise
    • Windows 10 Enterprise to Windows 10 Pro
    • Windows 10 Education to Windows 10 Pro

    Windows 10 upgrade keys between editions are currently available:7JM-9MPGT-3V66T


    Windows 10 Home Single Language


    Windows 10 Enterprise


    g-ek. com

    How to change the Windows 8 key (windows 7, windows 10)

    Short way: winkey+X = command line (administrator)

    Changing the key in windows 8 is the same as in windows 7 , but adjusted for how to run the command line.

    So, on the start screen, right-click in any area and in the menu that appears below, select «all applications».

    The start screen will display all the programs installed on this computer.

    We are interested in «command line, right-click on it, in the menu that appears below, select» run as administrator «0003

    Enter it to remove the key and install a new one:

    slmgr.vbs /upk


    XXXX is your new key for windows 8

    The activation check can be done with the following commands:

    slmgr /dli

    slmgr /dlv

    slmgr /xpr


    arozhk. ru

    Ways to manually activate Windows 100099

    When announcing Windows 10, the developers assured users that they would receive a new system for free, provided that a licensed version of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 was previously installed on their computers. To keep the old license key, it was enough to upgrade the system to a clean installation. However, in practice, activating Windows 10 has raised many questions.

    General information

    In the article on how to install Windows 10 from a flash drive, we looked at several behaviors when prompted for an activation key during system installation. Recall the main points:

    The surest way to clean install Windows 10 is to perform a pre-upgrade.

    You have a licensed version of Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 installed on your computer. You must first upgrade the system to «tens», and no activation key is needed. Then, when the update is completed, and you make sure that the new system is activated, you can create a bootable USB flash drive and perform a clean installation with partition formatting.

    During installation, you must skip the activation key prompt. After installation, Windows 10 will automatically connect to Microsoft servers (Internet connection required) and activate using the key from your old system. So everything looks in theory and usually turns out in practice. However, many users are faced with the fact that after performing the above steps, the system does not activate, and the following message appears on the screen:

    What to do about it and how to activate Windows 10 if this procedure was not performed automatically? Let’s see possible ways to manually activate the system.

    Manual activation

    If you purchased a computer or laptop with a pre-installed system, then you may not have an activation key. The question arises, how to find out if automatic activation after a clean installation did not occur? You can do this with a few small utilities that are available for free:

    • AIDA64 (30-day trial available).
    • ProduKey.
    • RWEverything etc.

    The same operation can be performed using a PowerShell command, but it is much easier to use one of the above programs.

    Changing the key

    So you know the product key. First of all, try entering it through the Windows 10 settings.

    1. Open the Update and Security section in the system settings.
    2. Go to the «Activation» tab.
    3. Click «Change Product Key» and enter the resulting value.

    Wait for the results of the key verification. If an error occurs, go to the next method.

    Command line

    Let’s try to manually delete the inappropriate key and enter a new one. To do this, we use a number of commands:

    1. Run the command prompt with administrator rights.
    2. Run «slmgr.vbs /upk» to remove the old product key.
    3. Specify a new value using the «slmgr.vbs /ipk XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX» command (XXXXX is your key).
    4. Activate the system with the «slmgr. vbs /ato» command.

    If the key is accepted but the system still does not activate, try this operation over the phone.

    Activation by phone

    To activate the system by phone, you must first look at the number:

    1. In the command line, enter the query «slui 4» and press Enter.
    2. Please enter the country where you are located.
    3. Call one of the listed numbers (8-800-200-8002 for Russian regions).
    4. Listen carefully to the voice assistant message.
    5. Gently enter the setup code on your phone.
    6. Enter the received verification code.

    If the setup code you provided does not match, you will be connected to an operator who can help you resolve your activation problem.

    Important: All of the above steps are official Microsoft recommendations, collected on the support forum.

    If none of the described methods helped you, contact technical support yourself and describe the problem in as much detail as possible. Be sure to indicate how you installed Windows 10, whether the previous operating system was licensed, and whether the motherboard was replaced in the computer. This is important in determining the cause of the problem.

    How to change the activation key in Windows 10 via the command line | Useful tips for Windows 7/8/10

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    C:Windows 10How to change the activation key in Windows 10 using the command line

    By the time the stable version of Windows 10 is released, you may already be ready to purchase a license key for an already installed and updated system. Usually this 25-digit number is entered at the beginning of the system installation, but does this mean that in order to register your Windows 10, you will need to reinstall it? No. The key can be replaced and, moreover, not in one, but in three ways.

    The simplest and most obvious is to go to the «System» section in the control panel, click the «Change product key» link and enter a new code in the window that opens. You can also open the change key window by pressing Win+R and executing the Slui.exe command

    [Click to enlarge] [Click to enlarge]

    Using the command line is another way to change the key and activate Windows. Open the CMD console as an administrator and run the following command in it: slmgr.vbs -ipk 00000-11111-22222-33333-44444

    [Click to enlarge]

    Naturally, this awkward number should be replaced by a real key. The key will be changed, but the activation has not yet been completed. To activate Windows without closing the console, run another command: slmgr.vbs –ato

    [Click to Enlarge]

    It may take a few seconds for the key to be authenticated. In case of successful activation, you will receive a script message in a small window. After that, the command line can be closed and once again check the result in the «System» section of the control panel.

    The method of changing and activating the key in the command line works equally well in Windows 10, and in Windows 8, 7 and Vista.

    That’s it. Thanks for reading the article. I hope it was helpful to you.

    Attention! Copying of this material is prohibited without a link to the home page of the website0003

    Although this task is not something you do on a regular basis, it is something you need to allow, especially when you replace some hardware components or change settings that may require you to reactivate Windows.

    Fortunately, Windows 10 includes both easy ways to change your product key, as well as more advanced methods that will be specifically targeted at IT pros or system administrators who want to automate the process. Also, if Windows is installed with a shared key, these tricks should help you use a legitimate license in no time.

    First off, Microsoft has added a dedicated option in the Settings app that lets you do just that: change your product key by simply providing your new license right on the operating system. This option is available at the following address:

    Settings > Update & security > Activation > Change product key

    In the popup displayed on the screen, just enter your new product key and then you are good to go.

    In addition, you can also change the product key in the traditional control panel. However, you should know that Microsoft has made it their mission to stop the Control Panel and move all options to Settings, so this method will stop working in a future Windows 10 update.

    To change the product key in the control panel, you need to follow the following path:

    Control Panel > System and Security > System > Change product key

    Clicking this option will launch the Settings app with the same dialog to change the product as in the method above. You simply enter your new license and you’re done.

    There is also a third option that IT pros might find super useful when trying to activate Windows 10 on multiple computers, and it all boils down to commands that can be run from the command prompt.

    To work with the command line, knowledge of the English language will be a good help, the online study of which is offered to you by the site: http://languages-study. com/press/izuchenie_angliyskogo_yazyka_011.htm Spending a little of your time, you will gain much more. Knowing English has never hurt anyone.

    First of all, run Command Prompt as an administrator — to do this, type cmd.exe in the start menu, and then right-click:

    Command Prompt > Run as administrator.

    The command you can use to enter a new product key is:

    slmgr.vbs /ipk product_key_number

    A second command is also available for the same purpose, only in this case you need to enter the following:

    changepk.exe /ProductKey product_key_number

    In both cases, once the new product key is set up, you will see a message in the command prompt window that appears that the license has been successfully activated.

    Don’t forget that Windows 10 also has the concept of digital entitlement, which means that product keys are built into the system and you no longer need to enter a license.