How to Reload Windows 8/8.1 on a notebook or PC with a Windows 8 BIOS Key

As of Windows 8 Microsoft has asked vendors to start putting the Windows key in the BIOS. This make it easy for the vendor to preload windows and the cuistomer not to have to activate. BUT what happens (as is the case we see) when your hard drive dies, and you have no backup discs ? Since the computer vendors dont supply CDs/DVDs anymore – you have an issue. Well you did !

To complete this process you will need a copy of Windows 8/8.1 (that is the same version you had on the computer), and a valid key that works with that version. Note you will be changing the key over to the correct one at the end of the process.

So step1 is to load windows, and use the valid key you have to install. If its an unused key make sure you dont connect to the internet after installing as it may auto-activate windows and use that key! Then step2- once windows is setup you need to then get the BIOS windows key – and thats where the great program called pkeyui comes in handy – which will allow you to read BOTH the installed key and the BIOS key. So run that, get your BIOS key, then run the following command to be able to change the Windows 8 key (do it at an elevated command prompt) -

slmgr.vbs /ipk <Your product key>

And then activate – it should be instant ! Job done.


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