Retail vs. OEM

Can someone tell me the advantage of spending the extra money for the retail version of WindowsXP Pro verses the OEM version. What do you lose buying OEM? Thanks

M$ support and a users manual.

In a world without fences or walls - would we need Gates and Windows /.

M$ support and a users manual.

in other words no advantage to spending the extra money for the retail version…LOL

Yup, no advantage that I can see.

Yes I want a free iPod. Send me the money to buy one./.

You can only by an OEM version of the software if you are buying internal hardware as well it is part of the OEM liscence and if a shop sells it without following this they risk a suit by MS. So to buy it you would have to buy someting like a stick of memory, a drive, etc.

OK, I think I can muttle through without Bill’s help, especially with the great help available in the forums. If you change hardware alot, is there any difference in how many times you can change major pieces? I.E. motherboard, cpu or harddrive.

Last time I checked you can change your hard ware 3 times before you have to re-activte XP, though I don’t know if there is a limit on the number of activations you are allowed in one year. Technically OEM goes with the PC built so if you change too much, new mobo,HDD and CPU, it may be considered a new PC and so the OEM liscence becomes void.

I assume you are referring to having to reactivate XP. every time XP starts there are ten things it looks for. 1. Processor model 2. Processor serial number 3. Ram size 4. graphic adapter 5. IDE controller 6. SCSI host adapter 7. Harddrive 8. Cd Rom Drive 9. Volume serial number 10. MAC address. as long as seven of the above are found to be the same windows will not require reactivation. (except of coursing changing a hard drive if windows is reinstalled on a new hard drive obviously it will have to be activated.)

Also…once you change one of the above…say CDrom, you can then change it as much as you like it wont count against you. once the original item is gone windows doesnt care how many times you change that item.

there is a nice little utility called XPInfo that will show you how windows views your computer( regarding how many changes have been made since activation)

That problem has been solved numerous times by online vendors. Almost all will include a piece of hardware for no additional cost, and some even stipulate that the hardware item may not work.

Where do you want to go today? . . . Do you think Microsoft cares??

Nope but some shops do, believe it or not as do some trading standards. I just buy a floppy drive as they are only £3.


Let’s hope that there’s intelligent life somewhere out in space 'Cause there’s bugger-all down here on Earth. /.

Thanks for all the answers. I’ve got my new oem disk now. I was googling for winxp install guides and found a few, but some of them contradict the others. Does anyone have a favorite comprehensive install guide they can point at me?

Stick the win xp cd in your cd/dvd drive and boot off of it and do a normal install.

There is also a guide for an optimised install somewhere. It’s a bit crazy, you have to install with certain hardware only (ie a really old sound card).

try this: