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I have tried to install a new xp pro sp3 disc on a new computer but have been getting errors in the installation. I have tried 3 different times but it says that the disc is missing some components and when it is final it does not work properly. I talked to microsoft but they are of no help. I finally talked to a tech person that asked me if I had another disc and I have an older sp2 disc. He said to install that but when I put in the key for my new disc it does not work with my older disc. I finally put in my old key and it worked fine. THe installation went off without a hitch but I won't be able to use my old key when I activate it. When I install the sp3 download will I be able to change my key to the new disc key? Can someone help me here? I have never had this problem before.

If you have Regestered/Activated the first key with MS (and it is a legal key) then you can call them up and advise them that you have replaced your PC or formatted it etc and reinstalled your OS.

In which case your old key will be re-issued for activation and you can then just install SP3.
This situation will resolve you issue, unless of couse the first key is still in use on another PC!

If so (and this is an additional PC with an additional instance of XP) then you will want to read on.

You can change you windows product key after installation as described in this KB on the MS site:;en-us;328874

However, if i were you i would just reburn my media (your SP3 disc) as long as it is LEGAL and within all copyrights etc!
If it is a downloaded and LEGAL ISO then redownload from you supplier or Technet or whereever you purchased it ...

but this time burn it sloooooooooowwwwwwwwwer!
As your error sounds very similar to a disc being burned to fast! ISO's need to be burned on a very low speed setting, usually the slowest speed available is advised.

If it is an illegal copy, dont tell us anymore!


Hi, I have a copy of Windows XP SP3, i can give you an Image copy of it if u still in need, it is my personal copy and needs no activation. just send me your email add so i can send you the copy

Hi, I have a copy of Windows XP SP3, i can give you an Image copy of it if u still in need, it is my personal copy and needs no activation. just send me your email add so i can send you the copy

Although I love you enthusiasm in assuming that a honest genuine software owner requires a pirated version of XP to resolve his issue, I'm sure that if he wants a pirated copy of XP with a VLK ... he'll know where to get one... and this really aint the place for that...

A pirate copy of XP is not really going to resolve his issue is it?
He wants to install HIS GENUINE product key not a VLK slammed into a unatended.sif or a disk with an activation crack slipstreamed. He will still have the same issue...

If he has bad media... fair enough he can copy any XPSP3 disc or download one that does not have a VLK or an activation crack slipstreamed ... Microsoft dont care where we get our media from as long as the KEY is legit... and thats the issue we have posted here...

His media is faulty, but he has a LEGIT KEY. Using your "no activation" disc means he still has not used his LEGIT KEY (as yours will no doubt be a Corp VLK with the key slipstreamed) and if by some miricle he does get to use his own key on your "no activation" CD ... it will be running the latest ETH0 activation crack to disable activation ... which in all honesty is pointless on a machine running a LEGIT KEY?!? See!

Using a unatended install disc with a VLK or activation crack is not reeeeeeally helping the initial issue posted.... is it... :-)

That said, i still love your enthusiasm to immedietly suggest using a cracked version to resolve an IT issue.
Your new sig should read... If you cant fix it... Crack I.T :-)


As an other option, you could slipstream SP3 into your XPSP2 disc using tools like nLite etc (although as it does mess with the media it can be frowned upon) However i use it at work to slip stream my CDs every patch Tuesday.

Come to think of it, Im sure MS have the Official XPSP3 available for direct download somewhere... google "msdn xp sp3 download cd" and you will find it knocking around somewhere on a MS server.
Use your LEGIT KEY and hey presto!

No mystical magical "no activation" CD's required :-)

does your error message look something like the picture of the error i get? that's what i've been getting on two different computers. i'm upgrading from xp home sp2 to xp pro. i've tried 2 different xp pro sp3 disks, an xp pro sp2 disk and an xp pro sp3 image i had on my pc at home and they all do that. it happens right after putting in the key when it copies it's files.

if this isn't your error, then ignore my post. :)

think i'll just tell them they need a fresh windows install, because this ain't gonna work.