What are the steps I'm to take to move my Windows 10 license from HD to SSD?

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I've asked questions like this one before, I think it this forum or other forums. I still don't have the answers I need. That's entirely my fault, I've done a poor job explaining what I need and why. So, I'm going to ask again, with what I hope is much better background and reasons.


I've got a 5+ year old Dell XPS desktop. The hard drive (HD) in it is failing. I've purchased a new Solid State Drive (SSD) to replace it. I'm just waiting for the 4.5" to 3.5" adapter case to arrive, so I can put the new SSD into it, then put it into my Dell XPS case.


My Windows 10 environment is seriously messed up. Profiles are really messed up. Therefore, I do not want to have some third party software that backs up my Windows 10 environment to reinstall it somewhere else. If I follow that path, then I'm only propagating my currently messed up Windows 10 environment from my old HD to my SSD. I do not want to do that. I want to remedy this messed up situation and get all of the profiles fixed, working with the software that's installed, etc.


So, here are the things/steps I need help with, please:


How do I get my license key/Activation Code/whatever it's called?

I've got a valid Windows 10 Professional license. Its my understanding that it's associate with something in the old HD - I don't know what. How do I get that license key, activation code, or whatever it's called, so that when I get the new SSD in place and turn on the machine, during the installation process, when it asks for the license key/activation code/whatever, I can then give it?


How do I initiate the installation of Windows 10 Professional?

Is this something I download from somewhere? Or is it a web page I navigate to? If I ever had the installation media for my Dell XPS desktop I've long since lost it and it would have been probably for Windows 8x. I've upgraded from Windows 8 Pro to Windows 10 Pro. So, how do I get the installation of Windows 10 Pro?


After I turn on the PC, with the new SSD in place, how do I proceed?

Once I've got the new adapter and put the new SSD into it, put that into my XPS drive case bay, and turn on the XPS desktop, it must at some point say or indicate in some way that I've got to provide an installation medium. What is that point? Since I don't have a DVD with the installation media, I'll have to point whatever this thing is, to some web page to download Windows 10 Pro. How do I do that?

3 Replies

@Rod Falanga 

You can use installation media (a USB flash drive or DVD) to install a new copy of Windows, perform a clean installation, or reinstall Windows 10.


Download here: Windows 10 (Then select Download tool now.)


To create the installation media, here's what you'll need:


A PC with a reliable internet connection. The download time will vary, depending on your internet connection.


A USB flash drive or DVD. A blank USB flash drive with at least 8 GB of space, or a blank DVD (and DVD burner). We recommend using a blank USB or blank DVD because any content on it will be deleted. When burning a DVD from an ISO file, if you're told the disc image file is too large, you'll need to use dual layer (DL) DVD media.


Then boot (you may need to change the boot drive starter depending your BIOS. Normally you need to press an F key - F8 sometimes to select the flash drive.) with the USB flash drive and perform a clean installation.



@Luis_Guicho I've got a new USB drive. I've downloaded the MediaCreationTool. Now comes the part I'm not sure of. I doubt that I'm simply going to place the MediaCreationTool onto the USB drive. My guess is I'm supposed to run the MediaCreationTool.exe drive and have the USB drive plugged into my computer, correct? And if so, what's supposed to happen next?

@Luis_Guicho How do I get the keys for my Windows 10 license?