View Full Version : Buying computers without their operating system on DVD

17-07-2009, 02:11 PM
I've always been a bit worried about purchasing a computer without a version of the operating system on a physical medium such as a DVD. But about 18 months ago I bought a HP Pavilion notebook with Vista Ultimate 64 bit. No DVD, but a restore partition on the hard drive and a recommendation I run their program to create a restoration DVD (presumably just a copy of the restore partition) which I did.

Needless to say, when the time came to reinstall the operating system the HP restore application failed to install from the restore partition and left me without an operating system. Attempting to restore from the DVDs failed with exactly the same error messages. Examination of on-line technical forums indicate that this is quite a common experience for people trying to reinstall Vista on HP Pavilion computers, so I am suspicious that HP's restore application within which the OS is wrapped is faulty.

But all HP say is that if I want my OS restored they will need my computer to re-image it and this will cost $$$$$.

There's nothing wrong with the hardware - Windows 7 RC (courtesy of PC World) installs and works fine.

I feel aggrieved about this and view the practice of not providing basic OS DVDs with new computers pretty shoddy. Why do they do it? Surely not just to save money? Any suggestions what I can do about it? Or am I just a mug for buying a computer with no system DVD in the first place?

17-07-2009, 02:15 PM
Restore DVDs are always useless. If you already have a copy of Vista on hand, use that in the future.

They do it so that their bloat gets back on your computer when you have to reinstall. :annoyed:

17-07-2009, 03:00 PM
I think its common practice to not provide the disk. You could always make your own disk or try find one to borrow.

17-07-2009, 03:11 PM
The consumer versions of computers/notebooks usually don't come with the discs but the business/commercial versions usually do.

17-07-2009, 04:52 PM
You could always go and buy your own copy of Vista. Backup your data say onto cd/dvd then format the hd and reinstall Vista that you have just bought.

17-07-2009, 05:16 PM
What is the legality of illegally downloading Windows and installing it using the serial provided under an HP laptop for instance?

My laptop has a serial for XP Home under it, nothing preventing me for going back to XP home even if i delete the partition is, there?

Disclaimer: Theoretical question of theoretical nature. MSDN-AA preovides me with everything I need for free, and my recovery partition is intact. And there are FREE alternatives avilable.

Speedy Gonzales
17-07-2009, 05:24 PM
Nothing but its still illegal. Since you didnt buy it. And it maybe full of malware. If you delete the restore partition then that key may not work on any other PC besides the one the key is on.

The version of XP would or may have to be the same version (of what was on the laptop's partition) for the key to work

17-07-2009, 07:34 PM
^^ Provided the key works and everything else is right; I may not have bought the retail license per se, but i still own a license, don't I?

Another question, I buy a copy of Windows, but the CD is dammaged\destroyed. What do I do then? Can I download the same version of Windows and run it using my serial, am I still a thief?

Speedy Gonzales
17-07-2009, 07:39 PM
You cant download it ( legally anyway - unless youre a technet member) and get the ISO from the MS site. Or pay for it online somewhere. If its damaged, ring MS, and tell them. Read the EULA next time you install it. So yeah unless you do the above you are a thief

17-07-2009, 07:45 PM
MSDN-AA preovides me with everything I need for free, if its anything like technet - then you can download the OS in an ISO format,which will make your own install DVD - and it also provides the product Key - the one on the back of the laptop wouldn't work from MSDN as its Retail, and the one on the laptop will be OEM.

17-07-2009, 08:13 PM
Here we go.

Yeah, MSDN-AA allows me to download the OS as an ISO, and does supply a product key.

Genuine Proof of License. If you acquired the software on a disc or other media, a genuine
Microsoft proof of license label with a genuine copy of the software identifies licensed software.
To be valid, this label must appear on Microsoft packaging. If you receive the label separately,
it is invalid. You should keep the packaging that has the label on it to prove that you are
licensed to use the software.

17-07-2009, 08:16 PM
Opps - read the reply wrong at first.:o

( Deleted original reply)

18-07-2009, 06:27 AM

I also have the very same HP Pavilion PC as you. It was given to me as a xmas present from my brother, I think it was December/January 2006.

I was also very disappointed that it didn't come with a Windows XP Setup CD.

I've had PC's since the days of installing Windows 3.1 and this is the first time, that I was not supplied with a Setup CD of the OS on any type of disk.

My 'factory' software setup became trashed, due to some problem some while back, but the option to recover the system to the same state as when it left the factory, would have meant reformatting the hard drive, with complete data loss.

To hell with that! I couldn't do it, too much of a loss! Luckily, I do have a few Windows set up CD's of differing OS's, so don't have to depend on that recovery option at all.

But I have to agree with you, it is extremely shoddy, not to provide an original Windows setup CD , with a new PC, because, I'm sure we all know, PC's do get messed up from time to time,
(I have re-installed Windows 4 times in the past 2 months and have a boot menu with 4 choices now - it's mad).


18-07-2009, 11:04 AM
You should be able to remove them with EasyBCD AntiVirMan

18-07-2009, 11:34 AM
Two reasons they dont ship with the CD -

1. To save money - You may think its only a CD, but x that by 1 million computers and its big $$$$

2. Slows down people pirating the software - while it still happens it makes it harder to do so.

Phil B
18-07-2009, 01:09 PM
If you can get your hands on another dvd the same as your original one.
ie, home, home premium, full or upgrade or whatever, you can use that to install windows & enter your original key.

18-07-2009, 01:48 PM
You can use any Vista DVD to reinstall any edition of Vista. :)

18-07-2009, 01:53 PM
You can use any Vista DVD to reinstall any edition of Vista. :)Not quite true -- While all versions of Vista come on the one DVD, and the product key selects which version to install, A OEM product key "May" not work on a retail DVD.

18-07-2009, 04:54 PM
That is correct.

Also if a computer manufacture sells 1,000,000 computers it wont hurt the the 7% profit margin to put a 40 cent dvd into a computer package to save the end user 60 cents for a dvd, $1 of bandwidth to download a copy, 2 hours finding a burning program for windows disk's or paying a teckie $20-30 to reload the system for them...

I do guess we are talking about $400,000 here but I mean cmon...

18-07-2009, 06:31 PM
I do guess we are talking about $400,000 here but I mean cmon... I wouldn't say No to that in my back account -- Ta Muchly :D

18-07-2009, 11:05 PM
Do any of these proprietary brands supply discs?

18-07-2009, 11:40 PM
Well I was looking at dell and its turnover is in the Billions so something like .01% shouldn't be that nasty for what its worth to the customer I think we need to force them to provide it or boycot them into providing it.

21-07-2009, 05:18 AM
Hi tuneznz,

When you say:

'You should be able to remove them with EasyBCD AntiVirMan '

Do you mean the boot menu entries?

I don't want to do that, as I think at the moment, it's useful for me to have them.

A couple of them seem to be okay, at least, as for the others, I could install
another version of Windows in place of them I suppose.