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Windows OEM v. Box version.

By SturmteK ยท 5 replies
Sep 20, 2004
  1. Hello Friends.
    I was wondering what is the differences with Windows OEM which you can buy with your new PC, and the box version which you can buy at the local software store?
  2. AdrianScotter

    AdrianScotter TS Rookie Posts: 39

    Usually no difference at all. OEM's (Original Equipment Manufacturers) have access to additional software tools like OEM CDROM's that contain the wjole operating system plus some other stuff but no licence key (or COA). With Win98 it was software like OFORMAT and OFDISK that had certain 'bits' changed so you could do things like get a factory state (completely blank) hard disk and quick FDISK and FORMAT it, with the ordinary software you couldn't do that. With XP there are such things as SYSPREP and the ability to creat 'ANSWER FILES' and WINBOM.INI plus the ability to perform networkable installations of Windows images and install this via a (fast hopefully) network, especially useful in 'UNATTENDED MODE). Once I have a completely up to date Windows installation, I can run SYSPREP, reset the SID's (Security IDentifiers) and perform a completely working installation of Windows XP in less than THREE minutes! All the end user has to do is put their name and licence key into it at start up. What this means to an OEM is the ability to hand build PC's at the rate of 10 per day in less that 6 hours. When you work alone as a self employed person, 10 per day can work out to a reasonable income. Hope this helps. Regards.
  3. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    Buying a separate OEM version of Windows XP (as in not buying it as part of a new PC) does also NOT entitle you to direct MS help.

    Then again, with a Forum like TechSpot, who needs M$?
    You can save a tidy sum by buying OEM Win XP Pro for about $80.- (and you probably get a free CD-ROM soundcable to boot!)
    OEM software has to be accompanied with ANY old piece of hardware, like the above cable.
  4. pizzada

    pizzada TS Booster Posts: 72

    Oem ?

    AdrianScotter...you said:

    Does this mean that you have to already have a license key to get the OEM version to work ? I hear that Windows XP will quit after 30 days without registration, which requires the key #.

    I am about to build a new system, and was planning on getting the OEM XP bought with my hard drive.. Will I be able to register with that ? or will I need a 'full' version to get a key so that I can register ?

  5. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    Proper (not 'hot') OEM CDs (should) come with a key. An OEM-key is different from a retail-key. Hence MS can decide to give you service (or not). The disks contain the same XP as retail, plus perhaps some extras.
  6. pizzada

    pizzada TS Booster Posts: 72

    Do you figure NewEgg isn't going to be selling 'hot' OEMs ? I hear they're a good place to buy from, I'm just not familiar with them.

    Whatever happened to the days when you could jus buy something, and it became yours to do with as you saw fit ?

    All this hassle (and $$$) over something that will be outdated in a couple years anyway...sheeesh.

    Anyway, thanks for the info. I was looking into Lindows (from Linux, I think) yesterday, it was only $50 U.S., for the 'full' version, ....buuuuut, it doesnt run any Windows software hardly.

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