How To Check Product Key Version & Edition In Windows

A few days ago, I happened to came across an interesting question while browsing Microsoft support forums. A PC user wanted to know the edition and version of Windows a product key belongs to, so that he can download and install the right version and edition of Windows on his PC.

Let us assume that you have a bunch of Windows product keys but you are not sure the version and edition they belong to. Although it’s possible to try them on virtual or physical machines, the approach doesn’t make sense when you have a bunch of keys, and especially, if you are not sure if they belong to Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 10.

Check version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to

That said, if you know that a particular key is for Windows 10, then you can determine the edition of Windows 10 the key belongs to by entering it on a PC running Windows 10 as there are only two editions: Home and Pro. Once the job is done, you can uninstall and deactivate the key if you wish to do so.

Determine the version and edition of a product key

Luckily, there are a couple of ways out there to easily determine the version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to. You can use one of the given below utilities to check version and edition of Windows you can activate using the product key.

ShowKeyPlus

ShowKeyPlus is a free software designed to retrieve product key from registry, BIOS/UEFI, and Windows.old folder. In addition to that, the tool can be used check the version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to.

Here is how to use the ShowKeyPlus software:

Step 1: Visit this page, download the latest available version, extract the zip file to get ShowKeyPlus.exe file, and then run ShowKeyPlus.exe with admin rights.

Step 2: Once launched, click the option labelled Check product key.

Check version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to pic1

Step 3: Enter or paste the product key that you want to know the version and edition of Windows the product key belongs to. The version and edition of Windows operating will be displayed just below the product key field.

Check version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to pic2

Ultimate PID Checker

Ultimate PID Checker is another free tool out there to determine the version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to.

Ultimate PID is not as superior as ShowKeyPlus, as Ultimate PID Checker requires you select a version of Windows to know the edition, unlike ShowKeyPlus which easily displays both version and edition upon entering a product key. That is, with Ultimate PID Checker, you might need to do trial and error to know the version of Windows operating system a product key belongs to.

Step 1: Download Ultimate PID Checker from here, extract the RAR file either using 7-Zip or WinRAR, and then run the executable.

Step 2: Select the version of Windows operating system that you believe the product key belongs to, enter the product key, and then click Go button to know the edition of the product key.

Check version and edition of Windows a product key belongs to pic3

If the product key entered doesn’t belong to the selected version of Windows, you will not see the edition it belongs to. In that case, select another version of Windows, and then click Go button again.

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Comments

  1. jasray says

    Okay, I get that part, sort of. I went to this site and ran the .vbs script. The Key that appears is apparently invalid when using ShowKeyPlus:

    http://www.howtogeek.com/206329/how-to-find-your-lost-windows-or-office-product-keys/

    What I was hoping to find with ShowKeyPlus was the Windows 7 key which would have been in Windows.old. Naturally, when I upgraded, I ran into odd/ends problems and went with a clean install after the upgrade. Of course, this left not Windows.old from the Windows 7 upgrade, but Windows.old from the Windows 10 install. Retrieving the Product Key from Windows.old in my case only resulted in the same generic key.

    So, back to the Macrium Reflect disc image I made before any upgrade; I was able to mount the disc image on Windows 10 November, go to the Windows/System 32/Config section as one would do by going to Windows.old and retrieve the Windows 7 Product Key with ShowKeyPlus. The program did provide an valid, authenticate key for Windows 7. Other products may work, but I rather doubt it, and this is an odd scenario.

    So with the Windows 7 Product Key intact, it is possible to clean install on any computer as long as I have the Windows 10.iso on USB or DVD? Or something random I would have to try? Or just install Windows 7 and start over.

    The reason I ask: Windows 10 isn’t free if I am giving away a perfectly valid Windows 7 key in order to receive a generic Windows 10 key hard coded into the BIOS. As a consumer, it’s actually pointless to upgrade and say to MS, “Here’s my old key and OS; let me have the new one.” Nothing is “free” in the exchange; it’s a simple trade in. Yes?

  2. admin says

    @ Jasray
    You have the same product key as mine because you upgraded from Windows 7/8/8.1 to Windows 10 using the free upgrade. All users who upgraded to Windows 10 for free have the same generic key.

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