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Depending on the type of Windows 10 license you have installed, you can transfer it to a new computer if necessary. Over the years, Microsoft has distributed its desktop operating system through various market channels. New computers are often pre-installed with an OEM license. There are many other channels through which Microsoft distributes Windows, such as retail, volume licensing, universities, and sub-groups such as upgrade licenses.
In 2015, Microsoft released its latest version, Windows 10, and offered the operating system free of charge for PCs and devices running Windows 7 or Windows 8 for a limited period of time. Microsoft continues to offer Windows 10 as a full retail product for unlicensed computers or for people who build PCs.
Determine if your Windows 10 License is Transferable
Microsoft describes the free upgrade to Windows 10 as a full version, not a trial. Contrary to these claims, the free upgrade to Windows 10 has certain limitations.
- If you have upgraded from a retail version of Windows 7, Windows 8, or 8.1, the Windows 10 license includes the retail rights from which it was derived – it is transferable. However, according to Microsoft rules, you are only entitled to a one-time transfer.
- If you upgraded from an OEM license for Windows 7, Windows 8, or 8.1, these are pre-installed licenses on a new computer from a manufacturer, and your Windows 10 license retains the OEM rights – it is not transferable.
- If you have a complete copy of Windows 10, you can transfer it as often as you like.
- If you upgraded to Windows 10 Pro Pack easily from Windows 10 Home, you can transfer it with a digital license. This is possible because, although the Pro Pack is an upgrade, it is a retail license that is attached to the Microsoft account with which it was purchased.
To transfer a product key to a new PC running Windows 10
If you own a device that runs a retail copy of Windows 10, you have the right to transfer the license to a new device, and the process is to remove the license from the old computer and then apply the same product key to the new computer.
Disabling Windows 10 from the old installation
To uninstall a Windows 10 product key, follow these steps
- Open Start.
Locate the command prompt, right-click the highest result, and choose Run as administrator.
Type the following command to delete the current product key and press Enter
- Type the following command to remove the license from the registration and press Enter :
- Once you have completed the steps, you can use the product key to activate another computer running Windows 10.
Although the above steps uninstall the product key from your computer, the process does not remove the activation from Microsoft servers. This process prevents the same product key from being used in multiple devices.
If you change computers because the other computer is no longer working, you do not need to follow the above steps.
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