Windows 8 is an operating system that has stood the test of time. It is used all over the world and is the chosen operating system for professional and household computers. The software has copyright over their code, and for Windows operating systems, a product key is necessary to obtain licensed software. The product key for Windows 8 is a series of numbers that need to be typed in to activate the software. It is provided in terms of the licensing agreement that is made between the buyer of the Operating system and Microsoft, which is the licensing entity. It is an infringement to use a pirated operating system. Microsoft uses the product key input as a system of checking the authenticity of the product and if it has been sold by a registered vendor. It forms an essential barrier to piracy.
Need for product activation
During the initial installation of the operating software, a tab opens up wherein the key must be disclosed in order to continue the process. A product requires authorization from the company. Approval is done when the system accepts the Windows 8 activation key. This signals that the product has received its license and is ready for use. Counterfeit software is stalled from being used through this mechanism. Most software in the market uses this mechanism. Operating systems are the fundamental requirement for the smooth functioning of a computer. The operating system allows the smooth running of all ancillary applications. Licensed software is required to run the system. It can be achieved through the proper input of the product key. An unlicensed product causes unnecessary obstacles that can be avoided. Different Windows edition has separate product keys.
Where to find product key
The activation number is usually provided to the customer by the entity from where the software is bought. When a transaction between the buyer and seller is completed, the customer is given the software activation code via email, or the product packaging has the serial pasted on it. The disk is used to install the software. At the halfway stage, the product key is requested.
In some situations, the computer or laptop has pre-installed software. It may be a package deal. The operating system is sometimes sold in conjunction with the computer hardware in order to entice the customer. The documentation for the equipment may contain the product key. Sometimes the activation code is on a sticker that is posted on the back of the hardware. It can be found underneath the laptop or on the CPU in case of a desktop.
There are various manners in which a lost product key can be found. Often the documentation is lost, or the sticker on which the product key is printed may be undecipherable. In such a situation, they can be extracted from the Windows 8 registry. The product key may be required while re-installing and uninstalling the operating system. Windows authenticity is essential for running the desktop. The product key indicates the genuine nature of the software. A digital copy from an authorized retailer is essential for finding the key in a registry. In case the key does not work, Microsoft’s support can further help the customer. The code is of 25 characters and thus may be input wrongly due to human error. The wizard gives multiple attempts during software installation.
In some cases, the pre-installed Windows operating system does not require activation by a product key. In these cases, the product key is pre-embedded. Microsoft allows fresh re-installation of Windows 8 users. There is also a specialized program called the user’s product key finder in order to acquire the keys. There are specific errors that may occur during the period of installation. Troubleshooting advice is provided in terms of support online. In the case of the windows registry, the product key is stored in a binary format.
Methods for recovering activation code
Third parties offer product key finding utility software that can be used to find a lost key. Microsoft tries to stop the re-use of the activation key as it cuts into the company’s profits. Thus authorized CDs are sold at a price by the company. Students can download free versions of the operating system. Windows 8 product key is required to install the software. It is an essential investment for the smooth running of the device. It can cause other software to malfunction if the product is not licensed. Pirated versions of the software may cause damage to the computer. Such computers are also prone to viruses and other digital attacks.
There are many different vital finders online and include the below mentioned.
- License Crawler
- Magical Jellybean Key finder
- Belarc Advisor
These programs allow a product key to be found easily. It is relative hassles free. An older product can be installed without having to pay the price for a new one. Windows 8 key is generally displayed in the software license section. It is alphanumeric. Requesting a replacement for older software is a time consuming and costly process. Many people opt for a new activation key due to this barrier. One must attend various formalities in order to obtain the older product key. Using a key finder narrows down the process and takes a much lesser amount of time. The cost is also saved. While Windows 8 is not sold by Microsoft, the same can be obtained from DVDs over the counter or at other electronic stores. Windows 8 may be required to run some software that has not gone through an update to run on later versions; in such scenarios, the older Windows 8 can be found and used. When the product key is required, it may be imperative for the customer to use a key finder in order to extract information to install the operating system. There is a manner in which the wizard functions. The software can be installed following a few simple steps. The product key can also be typed in. The process is explained in detail online. A step by step explanation is provided along with diagrams so as to ensure speedy installation at minimum time and cost for the customer. The step by step process is provided as under.
Windows 8 pre-installation
- Buy the product. An old version of Windows 8 is available online. The product may not be present if an older CD version is available.
- A backup of computer files is necessary. In the case of re-installation, the software and data that are available in the present operating system will be wiped clean. In order to safeguard and protect these documents, a separate backup must be present before re-installation. A removable storage device with sufficient memory may be used for the same.
Windows 8 installation
The installation method varies depending on the circumstances. There may be a few ways in which installation can differ.
- Pre-installed software
- Software on Cd or DVD
In the case of pre-installed software, the laptop or desktop may have a product key below a sticker stuck on the product. In some cases, the product key can come pre-embedded within the product. Upon running the system, the product key may be input by the system itself.
In the case of software that is present on a CD or DVD, the following method is to be followed.
- Insert the CD into the CD drive
- Restart the computer. Press the restart button upon clicking on the start and the power button.
- The BIOS key needs to be clicked. It may be the F key, the ESC key, or the DEL key.
- Find the Boot Order section. You can use the arrow keys to select the advanced or boot article.
- Use the arrow keys to select the CD-Drive.
- Move the CD-Drive to the top of the boot list.
- Check the on-screen legend and press the keys to save and exit.
Upon exiting, the Computer should begin booting the windows 8.
- Select a language time and keyboard setting from the drop-down box in case the nay of the information is incorrect.
- After clicking next on the bottom right corner, and INSTALL NOW tab shall appear.
- Upon clicking this tab, the wizard shall begin installation set-upset-up
Entering the Windows 8 key
The wizard requires a 25 character code that must be put in to begin the installation. This can be found in several ways
- In a Purchased Confirmation Email- During the purchase of the software, the receipt for sale is sent via email. Enclosed in this email is the product activation key, which can be copied on to the wizard.
- In a Retail Windows box- If the product has been from a registered vendor. The windows box in which the CD sold will typically have a card along with the product activation key written inside. This can then be copied into the set-upset-up wizard to complete the process.
- If the software is pre-installed, the hardware may have a sticker under which the product key is mentioned.
There may be a situation where the product key is illegible or lost due to another reason. In such a case, steps can be followed to find the Windows 8 pro product key. A key corresponding to the version can be located, be it Windows 8 or 8.1
- Download Belarc Advisor. It is an audit program that is free for personal computers. It is an essential finder tool for Windows 8. Alternatively, other vital finders can be used to locate the activation key.
- The file can be installed by locating it manually and setting it up like a standard software via the set-upset-up wizard.
- Upon running the Belarc Advisor or similar product key finder, the initial analysis reveals a 25 digit activation code that may be printed in the software licensing section.
- Each and every number displayed should be put accordingly into the initial windows set-upset-up wizard at which point installation can begin.
- In some instances, the product key finder may be unable to locate the activation key. Different software can be present in such cases.
- In a case where no essential finder software can locate the product key, there are two options available to the customer.
- Buy a new product along with an activation key. Windows 8 is not sold in the market by Microsoft. However, CD and DVD versions are available at retail outlets. They have package licensing. A card may bear the product activation code.
- Request a replacement for the lost key. Due to the proof of sale required by Microsoft, it is a costly and time-consuming process. People tend not to ask for a replacement as the more natural solution is to buy a new product.
It must be noted that the above two solutions are available only if the product key finder fails to find the activation key. This happens on rare occasions when the registry may not have the requisite information. Due to the widespread nature of Windows 8, people continue to use this software even though Microsoft has provided several new versions. Thus activation codes for the operating system are still in demand, as is the utility software that can find the key from the Microsoft registry.
Windows 8 Product Key Free
Windows 8 Pro Activation Key
Windows 8.1 Product/Serial Key
Is using a free Windows 8/8.1 Product Key Illegal?
Windows and Microsoft products in general come with a lot of regulations, so it isn’t surprising that many users are often confused about the legality of using free product keys.
The subject needs to be treading with caution since it isn’t black and white. The way you acquire the free product key and use them to activate the Windows OS is what makes all the difference. If you are using the system for illegal purposes, using a free product key can land you in trouble.
The only time you might find yourself in conflict with the legal side of things is when you are caught using the free product key for business and auditing purposes. Under the Software Licensing Audit, you might be found guilty in a select few states and countries.
Also, if you aren’t using any third-party application for the activation process of Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 using the product key, you should be good to go. Most of these unwarranted third-party apps are infiltrated with viruses and malware, which might end up affecting the integrity of the device you are using.
Additionally, if Microsoft detects the free product key as counterfeit, it will immediately disable the device you are using, so keep that into account.
What are the main features of the Windows 8/8.1 Product Key?
We have sorted a variety of Windows 8/8.1 product keys in this article that you can test out to your benefit. But, before it comes to activating the product key, there are certain factors worth considering.
Following are the main features of the Windows 8 product key you should keep a check on:
- The 4KB advanced format of the Windows 8 product key is now compatible.
- Most of the downloadable software is free.
- A genuine product or activation key will last forever.
- It supports effortless data transfer, even of larger files.
- It supports USB 3.0 devices.
- The imported data can now be processed and managed effortlessly.
- It features a redesigned Task Manager layout.
Since Microsoft 8/8.1 is a much older OS version, it isn’t surprising that you might not find it directly in official Microsoft stores (online and offline). In that case, relying on the product keys mentioned in this article is your best bet. Also, we keep updating our list, so you won’t have to deal with expired keys.
Common Issues and Troubleshooting Tips for Windows 8 Product Key Activation
Although it is pretty simple to install and activate Windows 8 on the PC using the product key, there could be some errors that could complicate the process. Following are some common issues and their respective troubleshooting tips:
- Invalid product key error
If you aren’t using a valid product key for Windows 8 activation, that’s a common error that will pop up every time you try to activate the software. In that case, what you need to do is cross-check the product key that you entered. If it’s correct but you are still noticing the error, contact Microsoft’s customer support for further assistance.
- Activation error
Another common issue that’s quite prevalent with Windows 8 product keys is the activation error. Issues with the activation can happen due to multiple reasons, including incorrect product key, wonky internet connection, server issues, etc. What we’d recommend you do in that case is wait for an hour or two and try to activate the product key again.
- “Windows is already activated” error
If you are noticing this error when entering the Windows 8 product activation key, it means that Windows is already activated on your device. This happens when you have a previous device that’s running on the same product key. So, either you’d have to disable the other one or use a new product key for your current system.
- Activation limit exceeded
Windows 8 product key comes with certain stipulations. Among them, one that’s very important to highlight is the activation limit. If you have used the same activation key across multiple devices, you are bound to receive an activation limit error. So, keep that into consideration.
When it comes to activating the Windows 8 product key, these are some of the limitations that you might experience. We hope the troubleshooting tips help navigate through the issue.
1. What happens if Windows 8 isn’t activated?
If you do not activate Windows 8 on your device, you will receive an ” activate Windows” notice containing a build number. After 30 days of using unactivated Windows 8, the device would ask for activation whenever you shut it down. Also, a few settings might get locked. However, that won’t cause any hindrance to use your device. If you can manage to ignore the activation messages, you are good to go.
2. Is it worthwhile to upgrade Windows 8 to Windows 10?
Yes, even the first version of Windows 10 performed extremely well. It was surprisingly faster than Windows 8. However, some areas have received marginal improvements, but are expected to improve with further updates. So far, Windows 10 is the best version to have existed. The only aspect where it lags is its user interface.
3. What do to if you have lost your Windows 8 product key?
Users mostly require a product key for reinstalling or uninstalling any version of Windows. If you have bought a physical copy of Windows, the product key is supposed to be on the card or label inside the packaging box. If Windows 8 was preinstalled, the product key would be on a sticker attached to your device. If you have lost it under any circumstance, you must immediately contact the manufacturer.
4. Does Windows 8 still receive updates?
Apart from Windows 10, no other Windows version is supported by Microsoft. As a result, Windows 8 has stopped receiving updates as early as January 2018, while its updated version, Windows 8.1 has got extended support till January 10, 2023.
5. Does Windows 8 require a product key?
Yes, for the activation of Windows 8 or during installation, users need to provide the system with a unique product key. If you can’t find it, you can extract the number from the Windows registry using a product key finder program. However, this program will only be useful if you have Windows 8 installed and active on your device.
6. Is Windows 8 still safe to use?
We do not recommend users to use any expired version of Windows. Windows 8 users are requested to upgrade their OS to Windows 8.1 immediately because you won’t receive any security update from Microsoft. This might put your system at serious risks. If you are using Windows 8.1, it’s advisable to upgrade it before it expires because accessing an unsecured operating system is extremely unsafe.
7. What is the Windows 8 product key?
A Windows 8 product key is a 25-character code that is used to activate your copy of windows. If you don’t have a serial key, you won’t be able to activate your operating system.
8. Where to get a Windows 8 product key?
The Windows 8 product key is provided to you when you buy a physical copy of Windows. You can find the product key on a card or label inside the box that Windows came in.
9. Can you use a Windows 8 product key to activate Windows 8.1?
No, you cannot use a Windows 8 product key to activate Windows 8.1. You will have to use the product key that is provided with your Windows version.
10. Are Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 the same?
The system requirements for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 are almost the same. So if you are already using Windows 8 on your PC, then you easily update it to Windows 8.1. By updating to the latest version you can enjoy more features and specs.
11. Is Windows 8 good for a laptop?
First of all, Windows 8 runs are any day better than Windows 7. Windows 8 is faster and can easily run on laptops, ultra-books, and even tablets. Not just that, but you can also try running it on some of the old laptop or PC models.
12. How do I find my Windows 8 8.1 product key?
Locating the product key depends on the mode of purchase. If you bought the Windows 8/8.1 from the online store, you can go ahead and check your registered email because that’s where the product key is sent. If you bought the physical copy of the software, you’d have to check the box or the CD for the product key.
13. Is Windows 8 to 8.1 free?
If you installed Windows 8 initially to your system and have been wondering if the upgrade from 8 to 8.1 is free, the answer is yes. You can comfortably go ahead to Microsoft’s website and click on the relevant keys to complete the upgrade for free.
14. Which 8.1 version is best?
Among all the available versions of Windows 8.1, the 8.1 Pro is considered the best version of the lot due to its extensive features and the extra bonuses that are ideal for business professionals. The security and encryption features are a lot better in the Pro version.
15. Is Windows 8.1 still good?
Windows 8.1 has reached the end of support in January 2023, which means that no further support or update will be provided by Microsoft. But, the OS is still responsive and working efficiently if you are wondering.
Microsoft Windows 8 is an essential operating system, and along with its latest versions, it is used worldwide in home and office computers. The product activation key is necessary to install the operating system. It may, however, be lost or unavailable to the users. As discussed above, there are third-party applications that can be present to find a lost activation key without having to buy a new software. An operating system ensures the smooth functioning of the entire device and is essential for a customer. An unlicensed operation may cause glitches and be prone to virus attacks in the future. In order to avoid such long-term problems, it is essential to install the licensed software along with the requisite product activation key.