Windows 8/Up a creek


  In Dec. I purchased a Asus q200e notebook.  It had Win8 on it.  Then I was notified I could upgrade to Win8.1 for free.  Since upgrading the computer constantly freezes.
   I called Microsoft and they said it was Asus' fault and I had to call them.  I called Asus and after 3 days on the phone and finding that the Win 8.1 can't be fixed and holding f9 down the recovery is not working.  I have a Win 8 USB stick and it won't boot to it but I got it running in desktop.  It asks for a activation key.  Asus won't provide one, they say it is embedded on motherboard and they won't give it to me.  Asus says they will look at it if I provide shipping.  NO THANKS GUYS
  So I am stuck with a $600 paperweight.  Is there a way I can find the activation key myself so I can restore the Win 8?


The product key for Windows 8 is indeed coded in the BIOS.  The only way to get it is to run a program called RWEverything (ACPI section, MSDM tab).

Also, if you are using legitimate installation media for Windows 8, it should read and pull the product key from the BIOS and automatically activate.

Feel free to follow up with any additional questions!

Good luck!

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks for your quick reply,
   It is indeed genuine, the laptop is not yet a year old.  It came with no restore disks and when I push f9 it lists no recovery, it says something about corrupted files.  I have a Win8 usb from my other computer but it asks for an activation key.  I will try what you said and hope it works but if it doesn't my only other hope is to run a Win8.1 evaluation disk I have and hope it sees the key in the bios.  Do you think this would work or would it erase everything and when it runs out in 90 days I am out of luck?

"I have a Win8 usb from my other computer but it asks for an activation key."

It is possible you will have to enter a product key if you use a disc from a different brand (not all brands keep their media "open" and lock them to their brand only).  You "might" be able to use one of the product keys below to get past the prompt, but it will NOT work for activation - you will need to run RWEverything to get the legitimate key from the BIOS and THEN try to activate.

"my only other hope is to run a Win8.1 evaluation disk I have and hope it sees the key in the bios"

You cannot permanently activate (or upgrade from) an evaluation version of Windows.  Also, the evaluation is the Enterprise version, which you cannot purchase a legitimate license for publicly (and your OEM license will not work, as the version is different).

You will need to contact Asus for an installation disc for Windows 8.

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I can answer nearly all questions about Windows 8 - installation, upgrade, virtualization (Hyper-V, etc.), configuration, how to get the most out of it, how to buy it, etc. I won't pretend to know it all - nobody can - if I don't know, I will try and find the answer. If I can't find it, I'll tell you.


I worked as an analyst in Dell server support for 2 years, and have since worked with many Dell PowerEdge servers. I am currently employed as IT Manager. I have been using Windows 8 since the early Developer Preview days and use it on all of my primary PC's for a number of activities.

I have a BS in Computer Science and have earned the following certifications: CompTIA Security+, A+, Project+; CIW Web Design, Database Specialist; Microsoft Windows 7; Dell DCSE Server. I am also an expert in Windows 7, Servers, and Hard Drives (I don't normally do XP - not because I don't know it inside and out, but because I have "retired" personal support for XP, and I want to see it die :)).

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