I replaced the hard drive on my laptop recently and did a completely clean install of XP SP2. The XP disk is the one that came from the manufacturer, has the key already imbedded so you don't have to enter it manually, I guess making it harder to mess up the entry, and this is the only computer that key is used on. Obviously, it has been activated before, the first time it was installed on this laptop. Has not been activated since. Well, until now.
I couldn't get it to activate via the internet. And I have been way busy with traveling for work, so it wasn't until the 30 day grace period was over and it forced me to address the issue that I did anything.
Tried again to activate via the internet, with no success.
I generated an installation ID, and used the phone method. The tech support guy couldn't get the installation ID to verify, so he had me generate a new one. The new one worked, he read me the activation code, I entered it, I hit next, and everything was great.
But. (There is ALWAYS a "but" when it comes to Microsoft), the next time I booted up the laptop, it threw a screen saying Windows needed to be activated. If I hit the OK button (which normally leads you to the choices of how to activate), it shows my desktop wallpaper, but then throws a message that says Windows has already been activated. When I hit OK on that, it forces a reboot.
Naturally, when it reboots, it throws up the "Windows needs to be activated" message again. Click OK, and the cycle continues. The software was activated after I called the tech for the activation key. I got into windows and was able to install other programs. It wasn't until I shut the laptop down and then booted it for the first time post activation that this happened.
Short of wiping everything and doing a full re-install, any tips?
I read about the trick with the wpa.dbl and wpa.bak files, but since I did not back these up prior to the install, so I'm guessing they're useless now since they're part of the OS that is having issues?