After spending almost an hour on the phone with Microsoft, speaking with 8
different technicians, I finally have a Windows 7 upgrade installation
activated. You can't do a "clean install" of a Windows 7 upgrade and get
the activation to work without intervention, even though they admit that the
huge majority of people upgrading to Windows 7 will be coming from XP and
will want to do a clean install. In order for the activation to work,
apparently, you have to install "over" XP, leaving the files there, and it
will copy the windows directory to windows.old and allow the activation to
work. So if you have an "upgrade" key, the old NCC adage of "fdisk" will
just cause as much pain as the problems you are trying to fix

At one point the technician told me he needed to take control of my computer
and I told him I couldn't let him do that <g> - so he walked me through the
registry changes manually. Now I know how to do it if something goes wrong
on the second computer I have to upgrade <heehee>. Turns out, it's just
changing one little registry entry, and running a command from the command
line to reset things, reboot and the activation works fine!

Also, I was told at one point by a different technician that if he couldn't
help me I might have to contact my COMPUTER MANUFACTURER to resolve the
issue. I didnt want to tell him that my computer manufacturer was Apple

But it was one of the most frustrating calls ever.

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