How To Extract Your Serial Key For Windows

12/13/2021by admin

After pondering over this issue, I realize that the old hard drive is running on Windows 7, and that product/serial key must still be on the system. After some research, I found a great way to extract his Windows 7 product/serial key from his old hard drive.

Active5 years ago

My friend's laptop motherboard died and he needs his Windows 7 product key from the hard drive (which is still working).

I connected the old drive as a secondary drive to my own computer and tried using a key finder utility, but it just keeps showing my own product key and not his.

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Is there a way to retrieve the product key from the old drive using my computer?

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1 Answer

It’s possible, but a little tricky. You need to extract the product key from the Windows registry hive files from the target drive.

There’s different ways to do it, but probably the quickest and easiest way is with Nirsoft’s ProduKey:

  1. Download, extract, and run the program (it will show your own key by default)
  2. Press F9 to bring up the Select Source dialog
  3. Select Load the product keys from external Software Registry hive
  4. Browse to the SOFTWARE registry hive. For example, if you have the drive from the other system mounted as drive Z:, then you would probably select Z:WindowsSystem32ConfigSOFTWARE
  5. Click [OK]

It should read the hive file from the other copy of Windows and display the appropriate product key.

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In this screenshot, I ran ProduKey in Windows XP (installed in C:) and then extracted the key from Windows 7 (mounted as T:). Note how it still says C:Windows since Windows 7 was indeed installed in C:, even though it’s files are currently accessible from T:.

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protected by CommunityAug 20 '14 at 19:04

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