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  1. kingbobyjr's Avatar
    I have upgraded my two devices, a Surface Pro 2 & my home PC, and noticed that the Windows 10 Product Key is the same for both devices.

    They were using different Windows 8.1 keys though so I guess it is safe to assume that the Windows 10 Product Key is now tied to your Microsoft account?

    Do we know how many devices you can use the Windows 10 Product Key with for clean installs in the future? I have another laptop I will be upgrading to 10 and I assume if I set that laptop up with my MS account, it will use the same Windows 10 Product Key.

    Has MS said anything about this yet?
    Last edited by kingbobyjr; 07-30-2015 at 07:44 AM. Reason: spelling errors...
    07-30-2015 07:26 AM
  2. mon_Wentworth's Avatar
    I just checked my SP2 and PC and you are absolutely right. They both have the same windows 10 key. I hope Microsoft sheds some light on this topic.
    07-30-2015 10:28 AM
  3. PepperdotNet's Avatar
    *every* device in the world that was *upgraded* to that particular edition, has that same key.

    Activation is tied to your hardware. It grabs information about several pieces of your computer and does some math computation to come up with a value. That value is stored on a MS server somewhere. Next time you install on the same machine, it matches and activates. Doing the original upgrade from a validly activated machine verifies your eligibility, it stores the hardware value the first time and matches against it on subsequent installs. Therefore, you can't use that key for a clean install on a machine that hasn't previously been through the upgrade process.

    You can make changes to your computer without necessarily invalidating the activation, as long as you don't change *too much* at the same time.
    07-30-2015 11:32 AM
  4. kingbobyjr's Avatar
    *every* device in the world that was *upgraded* to that particular edition, has that same key.

    Activation is tied to your hardware. It grabs information about several pieces of your computer and does some math computation to come up with a value. That value is stored on a MS server somewhere. Next time you install on the same machine, it matches and activates. Doing the original upgrade from a validly activated machine verifies your eligibility, it stores the hardware value the first time and matches against it on subsequent installs. Therefore, you can't use that key for a clean install on a machine that hasn't previously been through the upgrade process.

    You can make changes to your computer without necessarily invalidating the activation, as long as you don't change *too much* at the same time.
    Thanks PepperdotNet!!! This is exactly what I was looking for.
    07-30-2015 12:51 PM
  5. carlcamera's Avatar
    Me after upgrading 4 machines from three different OS versions and seeing the same product key in every one



    Me after reading @PepperdotNet's explanation above.



    Honestly, Windows Central should write an article about this new key situation.
    Attached Thumbnails minions-excited.gif   gru-crush.jpg  
    09-01-2015 09:19 AM

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