Bipass UEFI provided product key to install Windows 8???

Just purchased a brand new HP computer.


Unlike my old systems, this one is running an UEFI firmware (BIOS) and somehow HP embedded the Windows 8 BASIC product keys into the firmware.   The problem stems from trying to install my genuine retail copy of Windows 8 Professional.    I'm talking about a fresh install from DVD, after formatting and partitioning the drive (hate all that HP bloatware/trial stuff).


Booting the DVD in UEFI mode works, but when it gets to the part of the installation where it asks for my product key - the windows installer grabs the keys off the motherboard and tells me they don't match.    I'm never given the option to use the key that came with my copy of windows 8 pro.


How do I install Windows 8 Pro, so the installer will allow me to enter my product key?  

Within the bios there are options to disable the secure boot, enable legacy, and clear keys.   None of which works.   There is even an option in the bios to default to "user provided keys".   but that doesn't work either.




Found a working solution... just in case anyone else runs into an OEM computer that has product keys embedded it the UEFI firmware.


The solution was very simple and easy to complete.    First you'll need a copy of your original Windows 8 Professional DVD or an ISO of it.    You'll also need an empty USB thumb drive 4GB or larger.


Using the steps on this website - complete the formatting of the thumb drive:


Then create a file named PID.txt (as described below).


After many hours of banging my head against the UEFI firmware, the PID.txt solution works great.   When the windows installer find PID.txt, it uses that product code and ignores the one embedded in the computers firmware.


Be sure to complete the formatting of the thumbdrive for UEFI, its necessary for the secure boot requirements of many new PCs.    You could try booting in Legacy mode, but it wouldn't work on my computer.




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Question Info

Last updated July 14, 2021 Views 86,666 Applies to: