Re-installed Vista..Product key is invalid..M$ will not help me over the phone



Hi Everyone,I just recently re-installed vista onto my brother's computer. He is not computer savvy so he asked me to do it (the computer person of the family).So I first downloaded this program called ProduKey to get his product key for his computer. The reason I did this b/c I tried using my vista disc to re-install his OS and his product key ON THE BOTTOM OF HIS LAPTOP is supposedly invalid.Anyways, I re-installed his OS. Got all of his drivers. Tried to enter the product key that I got from his computer before I did the re-install and I get an error stating that the evaluation failed. So my mindset is...lets call M$ and get some help. Well they tell us that it is gateway's problem that they suspended his product key. So I call gateway, and they state that we have to deal with M$'s licensing department. I call the dept. and they say that I must call gateway to get a new product key. After that phone call, gateway tells me that they can not re-issue us a new product but M$ can. So immediately I am pissed and at the point where I wanna say screw you both I'll just get a crack but I am trying to be a good customer and sort this out.So I have come to you guys to help me.Here is some basic info.Computer: Gateway MD7818u and came pre-installedOS: Vista Home PremiumDisc: Was issued to me when I bought my HP dv9000I have 2 product keys, one I received from a program that showed his product key and the product key he has on the bottom of his laptop.I would try phone activation but it does not give me that option. The options I have when I go to activate his vista OS is: Buy a new product key online (which this just sends me through the genuine windows validation -- which was validated), type a different product key, or let microsoft find a solution (which is pointless b/c their solution is: I should call gateway)What can I do?

Post Originated from Vista Support Forums


The key on the PC is for the version of win / recovery disk that was
supplied with that PC
Your HP recovery disk will only work on your HP PC, using the key provided
by HP which would usually be on the PC
Any o/s supplied with the PC is supported by that PC maker and not MS


You need the Gateway Recovery Disk set that usually (maybe) came with the system
originally. If it did not come with then you most likely have a hidden recovery
partition that
is accessed by pushing an F? key on boot.The manual that came with the Laptop
should explain
exactly how to do that.
The key on the bottom of the computer is for the original OS that was installed
when purchased.
The sticker should also say what that OS was.... was it Vista?? or was Vista an
upgrade and the
system originally came with XP installed???
If the system originally came with Vista and you have lost all means of putting
that original OS back on the
Laptop any OEM version of Vista that was NOT supplied by another computer
company will work with
that product key on the bottom of the laptop.
If the system came originally with XP then that sticker will only have the
product key for XP..
and again any OEM version of XP that was NOT supplied by another computer
company will work
with that key.
OEM versions of XP or Vista that are supplied with laptops or Systems are the
sole responsibility of the vendor...not MS.
The Vendor has to supply tech support.
I suspect that the sticker is for XP and Vista was a free upgrade and what you
pulled from his computer
was a Vista product key for that free upgrade edition...and that its what is
going to work with.. nothing else.


Rick Rogers


The key you pulled is the volume key used by Gateway for their images. It is
not valid for a reinstall, that is what the key on the bottom of the laptop
is for. This type of key must be done via phone activation. First, go to
activate and use the option to type a different key. It will not pass
automatic activation and should prompt for phone activation. If this does
not happen, click start, type "slui 4" and hit <enter> to manually start
phone activation. Select your location and hit next. On the phone, you will
have to enter the activation code displayed in the phone activation dialog,
and the return code you are given. It may require that you wait for a live
person for assistance to complete it.

Best of Luck,

Rick Rogers, aka "Nutcase" - Microsoft MVP

Windows help -

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