Our final Q & A of the week comes from Larry via the reader feedback
page. Remember to try our friendly forums for help too.
Q: I created a slipstreamed winXP SP2 boot disk as per your article, which was excellent by the way, but when I
attempted to use it it would not accept the winXP key. I was trying to restore a
Dell system for a friend of mine so when it prompted me for the key I naturally
used his key that came with his Dell system, but it was rejected as being
invalid. Can you shed any light on what I'm doing wrong? I made the slipstreamed
disk with a brand new unregistered copy of XP Home which is the same edition his
Dell came with.
A: From your description, I'm assuming you tried to use a retail copy of Windows XP Home
with your friend's Dell XP Home CD key. As far as I'm aware, Microsoft identifies the
copies of Windows XP it ships to Dell and other major manufacturers differently, so
your version of XP Home would not identify his CD key
as being legitimate for a retail copy.